RARE is the restaurant at Desert Palm. Half boutique hotel, half polo club, the resort is a very popular getaway from the city without having to travel very far. It's just past Dragon Mart, so if your anywhere in the general vicinity of downtown or Jumeirah it'll take you around 15-30 mins to get there.
We, of course, visit for the restaurant, which is run by Brazilian head chef Joanna Portello. Friday is brunch time at RARE and if you're looking for a chilled and unique place for brunch, and are willing make the short journey out here, it's well worth your while.
What to expect
Great for both small and larger groups - brunch at RARE is a small, laid back but fun affair - perfect for a lazy afternoon of indulging in some top notch oak fired meaty delights, all surrounded by the staggeringly green polo field of the Desert Palm resort.
Arriving at Desert Palm. It's always great when you arrive somewhere and it puts a smile on your face. The entrance to Desert Palm is one of those places. A modern courtyard with a clever sculpture - a horse head drinking fountain.
The open kitchen. During brunch, the main spread at RARE is served on the open kitchen allowing you to chat with chefs during service and order directly from the live cooking station. Here you'll find a smoked salmon and shrimp station, oysters, tempura, sliders, a great selection of grilled meats and fish and some extremely delicious and buttery vegetable side dishes.
The centrepiece of the kitchen at RARE is an oak-burning wood fire grill, meaning the dishes are designed to be cooked over slow burning wood. This unique cooking method alone is a reason to come to RARE as it delivers extremely juicy meat.
RARE is all about high quality and rich . During the week, RARE is a steakhouse up there with some of Dubai's best, so it makes sense that on weekend they serve up a rich and satisfying selection of comfort foods.
Something you don't see everyday. The terrace at RARE doubles as the viewing platform for Desert Palm's massive polo field. We were a bit unlucky with this when we went, but come on a clear day and you can see Dubai's skyline rising out of the polo field.
Cocktails! Cocktails! The cocktails here are unusual. Some have an equine theme, some are served in funky ways. The Bloody Mary for instance arrives amusingly in a Campbell's soup can.
Live stations. RARE has a few things on a made to order menu during brunch, which adds just a little bit of fine dining to the whole experience. Each week it changes, but we had foie gras, lamb tagliatelle, spinach ravioli and duck with quail egg and asparagus.
The terrace of RARE. The perfect place to relax into the afternoon.
Stick around for the polo. At around 4.30 move to the comfy seats at the other end of a terrace and watch the polo as the sun begins to set over the city.
The food at RARE Friday brunch
In no particular order, here are a few our favourite dishes from the brunch at RARE.
Trio of beetroot
Lobster with aubergine puree