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Award-winning food critic๐Ÿด๐Ÿท๐Ÿพโœˆ๏ธ  Impartial website/app on restaurants & travel #DineAroundDubai tours Writer F&B/digital consultant Restaurant awards judge samantha@foodiva.net

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I wish I was in belle Paris, but instead guest reviewer @laylaaldabbagh is on a #CreamOfEurope press trip for #FooDiva this week ๐Ÿ˜‹. She has a sweet tooth unlike me! She is taking over FooDivaโ€™s Instagram Stories as she reports from Normandy, Brittany and Paris indulging in cream producers and patisseries from today until Friday. Any favourite spots she should check out, or a must-try French dessert? ๐Ÿฐ๐Ÿฎโœˆ๏ธ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท #creamdiva

My favourite place for a pool day in Dubai ๐Ÿ˜Ž. At AED300 a pop, @ooroyalmirage is expensive so only for a special treat, like long weekends ๐Ÿ˜‰. There are plenty of pool day deals in Dubai but no where else, in my opinion, captures the serenity and luxury of this spot ๐Ÿ’š. Or are there others? ๐ŸŠ๐Ÿผโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿ #foodivaloves #foodiva

Looks like Le BHV Marais has partly taken note of @foodsheikhโ€™s review and the staff now know the location of @izubrasserie but thereโ€™s still no signage. The good news is, itโ€™s well worth a visit ๐Ÿ˜‹. This veal chop Milanese was excellent, as were the accompanying frites - but I would have liked a more generous serving of the latter. At AED160, itโ€™s the priciest dish on the menu though. Trust the diva to have expensive taste ๐Ÿ˜œ. More in my review soon. Whoโ€™s a fan of @chefizuโ€™s cooking?๐Ÿด๐ŸŸ #foodivareviews #foodiva

I always feel so guilty for taking time out during the working week (and on weekends!) - and over six years on with FooDiva, I still struggle with finding a good work life balance โ€“ even though that was one of my key objectives when leaving the corporate world! Anyhow, yesterday morning, thanks to @foodemagdxb's #bringbackbalance campaign, I indulged myself in a yoga session, followed by an inspirational talk from @davidlabouchere, and then brekkie, all @lemeridiendubai ๐Ÿ˜‹. I suppose the latter could be construed as work ๐Ÿ˜‰. These delightful avocado, hummus and spinach bites were inspired by @deliciouslyella recipes for Bupa. If you have any tips for striking a better work life balance, am eager to hear please ๐Ÿ˜˜. Happy Hijri New Year and enjoy the long weekend lovelies ๐Ÿ’š๐Ÿด๐Ÿฅ‘ #foodiva

We are seeing a bit of a trend around the world for so-called โ€œfour handโ€ or โ€œsix handโ€ pop-up dinners, where a restaurantโ€™s chef invites another one or two chefs to cook with him/ her, each serving a different course. Chef @refaiekee kicked off a series of pop-ups at @theexperience.byreifothman last night with @rishinaleendra of one Michelin star Cheek by Jowl in Singapore โ€“ organised by WG Magazines. More dinners planned with different chefs for tonight and tomorrow at The Experience in Dubai, plus Thursday in Abu Dhabi at Roberto's starting at AED750 for eight courses (spots still available for some of these events!) ๐Ÿ“ท: my favourite dish of Rishi's โ€“ a delightful crab salad hidden in this pickled squash flower over a crab broth ๐Ÿ˜‹. Swipe for photos of one of Reifโ€™s dishes and the chefs, including a surprise visit from a well recognised name! I think we should keep it simple and just call these two chef or three chef dinners though, what do you reckon? ๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿด๐Ÿฅ‚๐Ÿท #foodivaloves #foodiva

I first stumbled upon chef Chris Galvin (and his younger brother Jeff) when they opened Terence Conranโ€™s Orrery in Marylebone in 1997. I used to work round the corner, and my boss treated us to lunch ๐Ÿ˜‹. But those were the days when concepts were ALL about the restaurants, NOT the chefs โ€“ so I lost track of his subsequent ventures, until the brothers set up shop in 2005 developing a reputable name for high quality French bistro cuisine. More in my interview with Chris now live on FooDiva (see link in profile) as he prepares to open his first licensed restaurant outside the UK, @galvindubai at City Walk next week (date not yet confirmed). Whatโ€™s your experience, if any, of the Galvin restaurant empire? ๐Ÿด๐Ÿท#meetthechef #foodiva

Who loves raw meat as much as me?! A gorgeous evenly seasoned beef tartare @lecirquedubai for lunch today catching up with @travelnow_world ๐Ÿ˜‹. Part of the daily lunch deal, weekends included, where the chef curates a three-course menu based on dietary requirements for AED125 + 10% DIFC tax. If you missed September's #DealDiva column for Dubai and Abu Dhabi see link in profile. ๐Ÿด๐Ÿ’ฐ #foodivaloves #foodiva

After too much Champagne last night over dinner at a friend's (and a morning visit to Dubai Mall), I really craved carbs and eggs. A moreishly delicious chicken and prawn Nasi Goreng @lafayettegourmet really hit the spot ๐Ÿ˜‹. One of the best I have eaten in Dubai ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ. Chef @rus_impiazzi's food never disappoints. Where else serves a good nasi? ๐Ÿฝ #foodivaloves #foodiva

I had low expectations of @seanconnollydubai atop @dubaiopera - thinking it would be just another Atmosphere, i.e. an overrated tourist trap. But I was pleasantly surprised. More in my review soon. In the meantime, I leave you with this luscious prawn cocktail from dinner last night ๐Ÿ˜‹. If you have dined there, how was your experience? ๐Ÿด๐Ÿค๐Ÿท #foodivareviews #foodiva

It's good to see a restaurant serving different oysters to what we typically find in Dubai. These gorgeous, meaty molluscs at the opening of @galvindubai last night hail from Cumbrae and Brittany. Decent sized no 2s as well ๐Ÿ˜‹. Paired with a wonderful Galvin own-label Brut Champagne (special import from MMI) that sells for AED480 a bottle. Surely that's the cheapest bottle of Champagne in a Dubai restaurant?! Or have you come across a better deal elsewhere? Galvin officially opens towards the end of next week. ๐Ÿฅ‚๐Ÿพ๐Ÿฅ‚ #foodivaloves #foodiva

Last night's mystery #DineAroundDubai unveiled ๐Ÿ˜‹. Ruinart Champagne and caviar aperitif; three secret restaurants each serving a different course and cuisine paired with wines; meet the chefs; culminating with an Absolut Elyx martini cocktail class before desserts. Thanks to our partners @mmidubai @toniqueconsultancy @thetastingclass @amsturcaviar and @uber_uae - and of course the delicious company of our guests ๐Ÿ˜˜. Like to hazard a guess at our three restaurants? Next event on the 30th October - eight spots left! (see link in bio for bookings) ๐Ÿด๐Ÿฅ‚๐Ÿท #foodiva

We start tonight's mystery #DineAroundDubai with a caviar masterclass by @amsturcaviar - a US producer of sustainable, hand-crafted sturgeon caviar. Paired with @ruinart Champagne of course ๐Ÿ˜œ. Any guesses where we are? ๐Ÿด๐Ÿฅ‚๐Ÿท #newitinerary #foodiva

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