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Sat 1 Jun 2013 11:02 AM

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Michelin-starred chef eyes more UAE restaurants

With one venue already in Dubai, Abu Dhabi is the most likely location for Indian chef Vineet Bhatia

Michelin-starred chef eyes more UAE restaurants

Vineet Bhatia, India’s first Michelin-starred chef, is considering opening a second UAE restaurant, with Abu Dhabi the most likely location.

The celebrity chef, who already has an outlet in Dubai, Indego by Vineet at the Grosvenor House in Dubai Marina, is considering opening more venues in the UAE, with Abu Dhabi the most likely location.

“I’d do something completely different; not fine dining, but more tapas bar style. For now though, I would be more likely to open in Abu Dhabi,” he told Time Out Dubai.

“But Dubai has been booming in the last nine months. It is an international hub and will soon be the biggest airport after Heathrow.”

Bhatia first visited Dubai in 1993 and wasn’t won over by the city but a later nearly ten years later was the catalyst to open a restaurant.

“In 2004 I opened Rasoi in London. On the first night, three gentlemen asked me to open a restaurant in Dubai. I laughed it off... I said, ‘if you’re serious, come back tomorrow at 7.30am’ and they did. I came to Dubai again to take a look, and I was shocked. The city had changed. Firstly the airport; in 1993 the airport was a dump! The whole city had mushroomed,” he said.

His Dubai venue is not Bhatia’s only link to the Middle East: he is one of the celebrity chefs who devised the in-flight menus for Qatar Airways.

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