Pier 7 has hosted many of Dubai Marina’s most exciting new F&B venue launches in recent months, and Fümé, which means ‘smoked in French, is no exception.
Since opening, the restaurant and bar has drawn attention for its combination of international ‘comfort food’ to share and no thrills service. We were therefore interested to see how the concept would translate into the business lunch scene and ventured down one afternoon to find out.
From outward impressions Fümé is clearly looking to differentiate itself from other venues within the Pier 7 tower. For starters there is no outdoor terrace, while the interior smacks alternative with exposed concrete and pipework in its large dining area and a boxed off bar that draws on elements of the prohibition.
The dining space is well lit, thanks to floor to ceiling windows that stretch across the exterior wall, offering views of the surrounding marina. While the distance between tables is relatively tight, which makes for a good atmosphere, although may not be ideal for the serious lunch meeting.
Service is meant to be a little more hands off, although aside from having to pour our own water it wasn’t noticeably less attentive than we’ve seen elsewhere.
Our main point of curiosity though was the food, given the competitive pricing Fümé has opted for. Business diners are offered one course for Dhs35, or two plus coffee for Dhs65, which certainly places the venue at the cost friendly end of the market.
This left us wondering if the dishes would live up to the reputation Fümé has developed since opening, but we were for the most part pleasantly surprised.
While the light bites, sandwiches and hot dishes available are not quite as fancy as the main menu, the selection we tried was a hit with our group. The sharing concept a clear draw for those looking for a bit more interaction than the standard sit down meal.
We opened with the quinoa, roasted vegetable, pickled radish and feta cheese salad, which proved to be a light and refreshing entry with an interesting combination of flavours. The grilled asparagus was also unexpectedly memorable, thanks to the soy and sesame dressing, although we didn’t take to the slow roasted beetroot with horseradish dressing quite as much.
Sandwich options are split between focaccia bread and sour dough, with grilled tuna and crispy jumbo soft shell crab in the former and smoked salmon and eggplant in the latter. We sampled the sour dough collection, with the house cold-smoked salmon, avocado, cream cheese and caramelised red onion filling the superior of the two.
However, it must be said the clear highlight of the meal was the hot dishes, which somewhat overshadowed the sandwiches. Business lunchers have a choice of minute steak, coconut chicken curry, and classic malay curry Laksa, with all three worthy of consideration, although the lack of vegetarian option may leave some disappointed.
While not staking any claims of fancy beef in its description, the minute steak with chimi churri and french fries, proved a tender option for those wanting mouthfuls of meat without pretentiousness. The Javanese opor, coconut chicken curry with green fried rice, also impressed with its sweet and mild flavours, while the curry Laksa, with fresh prawns, udon noodles and eggs, had its own wet and spicy appeal, although was among the messiest dishes for sharing.
Overall we left feeling impressed by the Fümé business lunch experience, which suits a team lunch or more laid-back client meeting, especially for those on a budget.
Although diners with specific tastes or requirements may want to check the menu beforehand just to make sure the options, particularly for the hot dishes, appeal.
The Fümé business lunch is available from 12-4pm Monday to Thursday. For more information email email@example.com or call 044215669.