By Thomas Shambler
While the name doesn't rightly convey it's a lunch-friendly establishment, Cocktail Kitchen's power lunch satisfies at speed
What's in a name? For Cocktail Kitchen there isn't much more to be said; you know it will involve a bar and food, it says so right there on the tin. But there's nothing about the name that screams business-friendly.
Indeed, while much business has been done over the odd lunchtime drink, in Dubai at least, it's a bit of a faux pas. Even the mere suggestion of taking clients to the so-named venue might be fraught from danger, not least from the man counting receipts in the finance department.
But for those willing to forego assumptions and take on the wrath of finance, Cocktail Kitchen is a bit of a lunchtime gem. Walk in between the hours of 12 and 2pm, and you'll find the crowds of boisterous revellers replaced with unassuming tables of diners. In daylight, the minimalist interior really shines, and with laid-back music instead of the usual tub-thumping bass from the DJ, it feels like an entirely new venue altogether.
The 'power lunch' lets you mix and match from plates of starters and mains. Choose one of each, pick a complementary drink, and you're ready to go. Food is perfectly portioned, with nothing too big or filling. Expect the likes of beef bresaola and seafood salads, sitting alongside mains of pasta and open-faced sandwiches.
Many rank business lunches on the basis of flavour, but it's speed that's most important when there's work to do. Happily, dishes fly out of the kitchen, and 45-minutes is plenty of time to enjoy two courses and a post-lunch latte.