We all felt a little excited to be going out after the restrictions were eased. How different is this from the usual Marhaba foodie outings? Read on and find out.
Izu restaurant at Mandarin Oriental, Doha faces the open-air covered square of Barahat Msheireb. The place carries the usual chatter of people out for lunch. All staff were wearing face masks and gloves. Menu cards were ‘disposable’ but you can opt to scan the code instead and view the menu using your own phone.
Izu, named after popular celebrity Chef Izu Ani, offers French Mediterranean cuisine. Their menu features dishes inspired by Chef Izu’s travel around Europe and the Middle East – refreshing, simple and made for sharing. Izu’s chef de cuisine, Stavros Chatziantoniou, is a close friend of Chef Izu.
If we were to judge the restaurant based on their appetizers, Izu would be on top of our list. The bread alone is enough to spoil you – soft and buttery on the inside, with just the right crispiness on the outside. They also serve a tasty burrata with sweet cherry tomatoes on the side. If you’re going to Izu, this is one dish you shouldn’t miss.
Then came the main course.
The steak is tender and meaty and sweet, enough to feed our group of three. As if that wasn’t enough to overwhelm, they also gave us a serving of their sea bream fillet!
The meal overall is very satisfying. The dishes were flavourful and garnished with enough vegetables to balance out the richness of the meat and the fish. Even the rice on the side hint of nuts and herbs. If you plan to have lunch at Izu, we recommend skipping on your breakfast sandwich, or better yet, come hungry!
For dessert, we head out to Gelato, the ice cream bar right beside Izu (how convenient). If you’re fond of ice cream or anything that’s sweet and cold (who isn’t?), this is a place for you. Their colourful display matched with their diverse flavour offerings are sure keys to happiness.
Unsure of which one to get? You can always ask for samplers. The staff allowed us to sample each flavour! Oh and don’t forget the toppings. They have the best meringue sticks!
Marhaba foodie verdict for Izu and Gelato: Totally worth our time!
Please note that safety measures are still in place in all establishments in Qatar. Make sure to follow all precautions and that your Ehteraz Green code is active. Masks are required as you go around the hotel vicinity.
Author: Lalaine Turqueza
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