The evening began with a drink at the World Trade Club perched on the 33rd Floor of Dubai World Trade Centre’s Sheikh Rashid Tower. I was enjoying my grape, admiring the twinkling city lights below when a bearer asked me to gear up for mind-blowing culinary experience. In a food-obsessed city could anything surprise us anymore, I wondered! However, Le Petit Chef’s Dinner Time Story - a show that fuses 3D projection mapping with a dining experience - was unlike anything I had ever seen in my life!
We were first led to an intimate dining area the dark interiors of which lent it a touch of a theatrical mystique but what followed was nothing short of drama! It began with a thick plain book being placed in front of us, with a projector above. The spotlight from the projector shone on the pages and soon began a story where, where optical illusion techniques were used to depict a mini chef jump out of the pages and narrate the tale of traveller Marco Polo. The commentary was complemented by some stunning, colourful images that took on a movie experience with sound and light effects. In a nutshell, it was like watching an animated film with the book being the canvas!
This was followed by the food. A six course menu, culled from Arabic, Indian and Chinese cuisine, inspired by Marco Polo’s trips to these regions, had been specially created, with the serving of each course preceded by the chef’s narration about his adventure in these countries. It was a unique gastronomic journey which, as Nadine Beshir, the concept creator, describe is “full of fun and surprises.”
The only grouse was that the food, in itself, could have been better. I was a bit disappointed with the Indian segment that had a prawn filled puri and a jackfruit cutlet though the Arabic dishes including eggplant and labneh and a walnut shell muhammara among other things were excellent. The best was for the last – dessert comprised a stunning looking rice pudding with saffron, nuts, raspberry sorbet, rose petals and kunafa – a delicious melange of different cuisines. At the end of it all, you don’t quite get what you just witnessed – was it a movie, a theatrical show or a dinner? In a nutshell, it was simply the celebration of all senses coming together – taste, sound, touch and feel.
INFO: Experience this amazing journey until May 27, every weekend at World Trade Club. Each evening offers two showings at 7pm and 9:30 pm. Dhs450 per person.