View of part of the Fujairah Corniche and the Hajar Mountains in the Background

Monday, June 29, 2009

Longing for the Emiratization of the Food Industry

The Emirates Palace is welcoming a new master chef with superb credentials in Italian cuisine but when are we going to see Emirati food being showcased in the best hotels and restaurants of the UAE?

This is no disrespect to Andrea Montella who comes to Abu Dhabi with vast international experience gained over three decades in New York, London, Brazil, Thailand, Italy and the Middle East. With his award-winning Mezzaluna (Italian for half moon) Montella is well equipped to fulfil his ambition in making the Emirates Palace “the best provider of Italian food and to deliver the very highest standards of culinary expertise and service.”

Fine Italian flavours served by the maestro will be very welcome in the UAE especially at the ‘star-studded world class events’ hosted by the Emirates Palace.

But wouldn’t it be good for the nation, if in the pursuit of the Palace to be the epicurean flagship, its new master chef was given the mandate for making the Emirates Palace the mecca for Emirati cuisine?

Wouldn’t it be marvellous if the master chef was given the freedom to discover the ancient recipes from this part of the Arabian Peninsula and the menus that were served throughout the year and particularly during the religious festivals?

Can you imagine the Palace kitchen being turned into a school for Emirati chefs to be trained in their national cuisine under Andrea’s tutelage?

The Emirates Palace in time could in time become the powerhouse for producing Emirati chefs who will take their epicurean delights to all the emirates and to the tables of distinguished hotels all around the world.

Try Camel Milk, Camel Meat and Now Gourmet Quail in the Emirates, ETE.
Eating the Emirates, ETE.

Dr Geoff Pound

Image: One of the restaurants in the Emirates Palace and welcome to Andrea Montella.