The new menu at Prime steakhouse, Doha in a nutshell:
Prime steakhouse, Doha, located on the first floor of Intercontinental Doha the City, has long been a date night favourite of Mr Sunshine’s and mine. It was the second restaurant we ever visited in the city shortly after I moved to Qatar and it only took one meal to have us hooked. To this day, we still reminisce about ‘that’ Wagyu tenderloin on a regular basis, but due to busy schedules and the small matter of a baby catapulting herself into our lives, we sadly don’t get the opportunity to go back to get our fix nearly as much as we would like to.
Last week, however, was different. We had heard that the restaurant had just launched a brand new menu that had been four months in the making, and that each dish had been so meticulously contrived by the expert team at Prime, that the result was nothing short of exceptional. We just had to go along and see for ourselves whether it lived up to the hype.
Why is it worth it?
We were happy to see some of Prime’s standout staple signature dishes remained on the menu: the 36-hour braised shortribs, Australian tenderloin beef tartare, and the range of 1824 Australian USDA Prime Wagyu cuts (albeit in different weights). However, it was the new additions to the menu which really caught our eye. The dishes are varied and eclectic, but have something in common: their creativity and flair have taken Prime from just another one of Doha’s better steakhouses, to the only steakhouse you should visit if you’re interested in more than just steak.
What are the best dishes?
Let’s talk about the oldies but goodies first.
Our 36 Hours Braised Shortribs which we chose as an appetiser were sticky and sweet, accompanied by crunchy roasted butternut squash crisps and an earthy spinach sauce with a tang of wasabi, which was incredible (I just wish there was a little more of it!).
The Wagyu Tenderloin that we had for our main course was everything we remembered it to be: soft and tender, and oh-so delicious with lashings of sauce and accompanied by some of the best truffle mash in the city.
The new dishes are invariably inspired, but alas, we couldn’t try them all! The ones which came with a special recommendation from the chef and which we particularly enjoyed included:
The Crab and Sweet Pea Panna Cotta; a surprising twist on the popular dessert, combining a sweet pea panna cotta base, topped with delicate crab and a soy and peach dashi granite, with an additional pippette of lemon and soya for the patron to add extra depth, to taste. Mixed together, the result is a gastronomic flavour sensation.
The ‘Not Your Traditional Seafood Chowder’ which, unlike your traditional chowder, doesn’t contain cream and is flavoured with rich saffron. It’s thick and comforting, served in the softest freshly baked crusty rye cob loaf bowl (be careful to restrain yourself from eating the entire loaf like Mr Sunshine and I did, as it may ruin your appetite for the rest of the meal!).
The Chef’s Slow Cooked Brisket. If you like brisket (not all do, but I’m a fan), you’ll love this take on this muscular cut, which is often quite difficult to get your jaws around. This one, however, has been smokey dry rubbed and then braised for 72 hours in a sweet Tennessee Whiskey sauce until it’s surprisingly melt-in-the-mouth. Accompanied by an Asian quinoa salad and a dusting of spinach and parsley dust, it’s affectionately named the ‘woodland brisket’ by the staff as its presentation makes it look like a fallen log.
Now we come to the pièce de résistance of the entire meal. The triple cooked crispy lamb ribs are everything I look for in a dish. They’ve been boiled, braised and then crispy fried, to create a texture which is crispy on the outside and softer than butter on the inside. The Asian soya glaze is lick-your-fork-clean sweet (luckily they pop an extra jug of sauce on your table, in case you fancy an extra slug), and the homemade chips add a contrasting crunch to the meaty ribs. The attention to detail that’s gone into the creation of this masterpiece is obvious in every element of the dish, and the resulting texture and flavour combinations are just about perfect.
You know a dish is good when you’re still thinking about it three days later. I actually have a feeling that this will be the new menu item that we reminisce on three years later when we’re discussing where to head out on our next date night.
Finally, for desert, we tried the After Eight: a chocolate sphere enclosing mint gel and granite, surrounded by chocolate soil. We felt this one was beautiful to look at but didn’t quite deliver the warm and cool contrast of the chocolate against the mint that we were expecting.
The Chocolate Indulgence, however, was just what we were looking for to hit that sweet spot at the end of the meal. With single origin Venezuelan chocolate mousse, gold chocolate Earl Grey Rocks, hazlenut dacquoise, mango dulce de leche and beetroot cherry jelly, it’s a dish which plays with complex technique, texture and flavour combinations and gets it spot on.
What will it cost me?
Appetisers range from QAR 45 – 100.
Mains range from QAR 100 – 780 (for the largest weight Wagyu Tenderloin).
Average. One to enjoy over a protracted evening when you can leave the kids at home.
Prime, 1st Floor Intercontinental Doha The City, Dafna, Doha
+974 4477 4542
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