Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 16 September 2019

Jeddah Season: Dubai restaurants Gaia and Scalini head to Saudi Arabia

The pop-ups are part of the Saudi Seasons festival and also include L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon

Saudi Seasons — the Kingdom's drive to promote Saudi Arabia as a tourist destination — is celebrating Jeddah Season until July 18. To mark the event, Dubai-based hospitality firm Bulldozer Group has opened three restaurant pop-ups across the port city.

L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon will rule the roost at Assila Hotel on Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Street. The brainchild of acclaimed chef Joel Robuchon, the eatery is known for its Michelin-lauded French fare and boasts a dozen restaurants across the world, from New York to Tokyo.

The Saudi pop-up will serve an a la carte menu from 7pm to 1am each evening until July 18 — and will incorporate signature aspects of the global Robuchon brand, including allowing customers to observe the preparation of their dishes and select a meal according to their appetite.

While an outpost is yet to make its way to the UAE, the two new chefs who have joined Burj Al Arab both happened to train under Robuchon, who was named Chef of the Century by the Gault Millau restaurant guide in the 1980s.

The other two restaurants, Scalini and Gaia, already have Dubai branches.

Scalini will serve its decadent Italian dishes — veal Milanese, lobster linguine and paccheri with layers of black truffle — on Jeddah's New Corniche from 3pm to midnight. The restaurant opened in London in 1988 and is credited as upping the demand for Italian cuisine in the UK. It launched in Dubai at the Four Seasons Resort Jumeirah Beach Road in 2018.

The Greek restaurant Gaia, meanwhile, runs a full house at its standalone DIFC space, overseen by chef Izu Ani. On the menu at Gaia's Saudi pop-up in Jeddah's Obhor area are its Greek salad, succulent oysters, sea bream carpaccio and other fresh seafood, which will be served from 3pm to midnight, also until July 18.

Updated: June 17, 2019 03:42 PM

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