Relaxed Saturdays call for relaxed lunches and I wouldn’t normally associate DIFC with a casual family lunch but clearly I had it all wrong. Dinamico, a newly introduced Italian family orientated restaurant situated on the concourse floor of the Sky Gardens, has an absolutely relaxed and family friendly atmosphere.
Not too many things struck me as particularly Italian or Tuscan in design but that didn’t matter, comfortable seating, attentive service and a lovely view was what we got instead.
We visited them for a late lunch and were welcomed with a teaser of what was to come, a slice of pesto flatbread. A good start to the meal that I quite enjoyed and while we waited for the starters and kids meals, my younger two were kept occupied with colouring in their kids menus.
Our pretty mocktails. The Refreshing, a sparkly version of the usual lime mint juice. The Red Fruit being the one I liked the most, a mixture of blueberries, orange juice, cherry juice and strawberry salad and the Mix Juice, a combination of pineapple and orange juices and strawberry salad. Ironically I found the Red Fruit to be the most refreshing but what’s in a name right?
The kids meals arrived first, just as I had requested, a plate of pomodoro pasta and a ginormous Margherita pizza. Ordinarily the pizza would be a generous portion for an adult but for a kids menu option it was quite huge. Not that I’m complaining and both of my children thoroughly enjoyed it. The pasta was good too but the pizza was their preferred choice.
Our homemade ravioli stuffed with spinach, ricotta, butter and sage; and the gnocchi with homemade tomato, mozzarella and basil sauce, were tasty starters, but it was the pinsa that we were waiting for.
Pinsa is the Latin term for a variation of pizza that is made long and oval in shape instead of the more commonly recognized round pizzas that we frequently get. The family dough recipe used in the Dinamico pinsas promised to be light and airy, and it certainly was.
We had ordered a bufalina, which was topped with a tomato based sauce, buffalo mozzarella, and basil, and a bresaola pinsa with breasaola of course, loads of rucola and grana padano cheese. The dough was delicious and didn’t leave us with an over stuffed feeling after eating it which is always a good sign. The oozy mozzarella on the bufalina had us all hypnotised and the taste was unbelievably good. I love it when a few simple ingredients like these can be transformed into a gorgeous tasting pizza, or rather pinsa such as this. The bresaola pinsa was equally mouthwatering. Though it had a tad too much rucola for us, the flavours were well balanced.
Our tummies feeling happily satisfied after that course, we waited for the steak or tagliata, a piece of meat cooked rare and then garnished with beans, olive oil and fresh lemon. In our case, we were offered the combination with porcini mushrooms. The steak was nicely presented and the enticing aroma of the mushroom sauce made us all anticipate our first bite. Unfortunately that’s where it all went downhill. The steak was overcooked and nothing about it was cooked to rare or even medium doneness. The first piece that I ate was full of grissle, so tough and chewy that I couldn’t eat it. I was hopeful that the second piece would be better but it was a repeat of the first. The sauce was delicious, flavoured by the earthy mushrooms and it really is a pity that the steak did not match up to it.
Our next course was dessert of course and we could not leave without sampling the tiramisu. We also tasted a Din Amico parfait with hazelnuts, caramel and meringue. I wish that I could say that we savoured the tiramisu but it was devoured rather quickly, seeing as it was not only creamy and more-ish but with a good amount of coffee. The parfait may be too rich for some, but since we were all feeling in a sweet tooth kind of mood that day, it disappeared almost as quickly as the tiramisu.
On cooler days, I’d recommend sitting outside. The view is gorgeous and the ambience is definitely what I’d look for in terms of a family oriented restaurant. With regards to the food, the pinsa was definitely the most successful and I’d return for that.