Carribean dining: Miss Lily's brings Jamaican flavours to Dubai
Punchy colours, tasty flavours
W ith already two successful venues, Jamaican restaurant Miss Lily's is a true New York culinary institution and when the time came to launch its first overseas outpost, Dubai was the natural selection. Homed at the Sheraton Grand Hotel, Miss Lily's is now undoubtedly the on-trend food spot for Jamaican cuisine.
A quick trip up the elevator to the fifth floor and you will be greeted by nothing more than a stark black shipping container but once inside, it's an explosion of vibrant colours – think red, green and yellow – that sets the mood for your gastronomic adventure. The space is roughly divided into several dining areas – including an exclusive 16-seater Chef's Table right next to the kitchen – as well as a dance floor, complete with disco ball and large yellow audio speakers stacked one on top of the other. The influence of music flows onto the walls, which are covered in vinyl record covers. In fact, everywhere you turn, touches of the arts are clearly evident.
Once you've settled down, it's time to navigate the delectable menu. While the popular choice would be the jerk chicken, the menu also holds other culinary surprises, including options for vegetarians, Japanese-inspired dishes as well as dishes that have been created exclusively for Dubai. Whichever you choose, do note that spiciness is a part of Jamaican cuisine so expect a little kick in every dish.
Start with a trio of appetisers: the hot pepper shrimp (marinated local prawns flash fried and then topped with Scotch Bonnet Sauce), the kale salad (Miss Lily's take on the Caesar which replaces lettuce with kale and croutons with panko bread crumbs in jerk spices) and the divinely delicious jerk corn (steamed corn treated in in-house jerk mayonnaise before being rolled in sweet toasted coconut).
For the mains, the jerk chicken is the quintessential Jamaican dish, with this spicy in-house speciality served with a side of cool chutney made from mango, apricot and raisins. Continuing the authentic Carribean experience are the ubiquitous curry goat stew and oxtail soup. Away from the Jamaican fare, Miss Lily's Dubai offers several dishes exclusive only to the outlet including the pan-roasted sea bass, the chilli crab as well as the slow-roasted short ribs, all designed for the discerning Middle Eastern palate. Other show-stopping dishes are the crispy okra and potatoes, the jerk ramen and the pimento and tamarind-glazed lamb ribs.
Whether it's your first time tasting Jamaican cuisine or you're an aficionado, Miss Lily's Dubai offers authentic flavours, colours and vibes. Couple that with an easy-going but knowledgeable crew and you can expect a truly satisfying Carribean adventure.