The Cellar has mastered the Spanish art of tapas, and has a selection of delectable Mediterranean bites to while away a balmy evening. Whilst there is an extensive selection of standard fare in full portions for those wanting a square meal on one plate, it is in the tapas selection that The Cellar really stands out, with choices such as bite-size whoopie pie, chicken liver pate with caramelized pear, saffron and parmesan arancini, grilled asparagus with cheese fondue, and grilled salmon with fennel and orange.
The Cellar, Oryx Rotana, Umm Ghuwaylina, Doha, Qatar, +9744402 3333
It’s much to the surprise of the unsuspecting hungry visitor that within the walls of the Doha Radisson Blu Hotel there is a mini-Chinatown, a bite-size Beijing, serving sizzling beef, moreish dumplings and spicy snapper. Located near the buzzing Ramada bars, Ruby Wu’s is the perfect restaurant to sample some fine food before trying out the nocturnal activities the city has to offer. Traditional Chinese dishes are tamed to adjust to international tastes, meaning that everybody is likely to find something they love. Similar to many other restaurants attached to international hotels, the quality of food here is of the highest standard, and the licensed bar is well stocked.
Ruby Wu’s, at Radisson Blu Hotel, Rawdat Al Khail, Doha, Qatar, +974 4428 1555
In a city with very few Latin American restaurants, it’s important to cover the entire range of countries and cuisines and offer a truly Latino experience. This is where Latino excels. The venue offers a fully immersive cultural experience: the Colombian ensemble Kanela Trio play regular sets to diners whilst they indulge in dulce de leche, Peruvian potato dishes and grilled meats sourced from all over the continent. An entire section of the menu is dedicated to ceviche – a seafood dish popular in the coastal regions of the Americas, no surprise given the restaurant’s proximity to the sea and fresher than fresh marine produce. A vibrant atmosphere and a constantly refreshed program of events and offers make Latino a friendly hearth on Qatar’s restaurant scene.
Perfect to spot the international businessmen signing lucrative deals, Aroma is also a prime spot for a camel burger. The sophisticated European menu, set in the refined ambiance of the Doha Kempinski Hotel, features both heavier options such as the camel patty in a saffron walnut bun with chickpea fries, but also the streamlined option, to save space for dinner, be it at Aroma or elsewhere. A delicious example includes the mango and pineapple crusted halibut.
Ric’s Country Kitchen
Far from being in the middle of a vast countryside, as one might expect from the name of this low-key restaurant, it is located in downtown Doha and is faithful to the image and ideals of quality diners to be found up and down the United States. Perhaps it is the location just on the other side of the Ring Road that qualifies Ric’s as ‘country’. Whatever the explanation, the food in this American-run establishment is homemade, genuinely friendly and highly addictive. Notably, the pancakes, T-bone steak and pillow-soft hamburger buns (not forgetting the succulent burgers encased within) come with tried-and-tested taste satisfaction.
Ric’s Country Kitchen, Ras Abu Abboud, Doha, Qatar, +974 4443 7846
In case Qatar as a cultural and picturesque destination doesn’t satisfy your get-away craving, there is a Greek retreat perched near West Bay, which can whisk diners away to the Greek islands in the time it takes to be handed a menu. Mykonos serves authentically Greek cuisine right on the waterfront – that of the swimming pool, though, as the sea is still a couple of hundreds of meters away. The pittas, moussaka and spinach pastries are all reminiscent of the Hellenistic classics appreciated internationally, as is local meat served on sticks with a creamy and aromatic tzatziki dip. Mykonos is part of the Intercontinental Hotel.
Mykonos, at the InterContinental Doha, West Bay, Doha, Qatar, +974 4484 4444
L’Wzaar Seafood Market
L’Wzaar is situated by the sea in central Doha. Fish and seafood is to be chosen, cooked and eaten all with the complicity of the diner, making for an interactive dining experience from start to finish. Whether with a view of the sea or of the open kitchen, the experience is as made-to-measure each and every time. And, as the seafood is sold by weight, splurging depends on each individual’s appetite. As well as the variety of sauces and cooking styles on offer, there is also a menu, with recognizable names such as fish and chips, and sushi to choose from.
L’Wzaar, West Bay, Doha, Qatar, +974 4408 0710
Repeatedly cited as Doha’s best Lebanese restaurant by travel reviews and tourists, Layali is a hotbed of hummus-eating and shisha-smoking which resembles the sort of setting you’d see in an Arabian Nights sequel. Layali encapsulates the best of Arabic cuisine in general and offers live Tarab music, with the oud in a prominent position. There’s an impressive 360 square meters of dining space and a good meal accompanied by live music makes for a wonderful evening in Doha. This certainly is the case at Layali, where the gentle notes of live music complement the powerful flavors of Arabic cuisine.
Layali, Salwa Road, Souq Najd, Doha, Qatar, +974 4431 0005
JG Sandwich Cellar
The British-ruled Qatari past may be far back in the memory of its youngest residents, but the British influence continues to reign in the city’s favorite sandwich shop, JG Sandwich Cellar. All things British are glorified by a menu proudly boasting bangers and mash, fish and chips, pies, and, of course, more than 50 varieties of sandwiches. The decor is as kitsch as the best of British sandwich shops, and the menu changes daily, with the only non-mover being the Sunday roast – for a roast simply cannot be had on any other day. JG Sandwich Cellar also does home and office delivery, so even if you can’t make it to the sandwich shop, the sandwiches can come to you. Surprisingly, it’s on a ground-floor location with no sign of a cellar at all – so much the better for enjoying watching the word go by.
JG Sandwich Cellar, Ras Abu Abboud, Doha, Qatar, +974 4435 7559
Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten of Doha’s Spice Market brings South East Asia to Qatar, with no qualms about flitting between countries, social origins or style of cuisine. From sushi to Thai noodles, Mongolian lamb to salmon tartare, all sorts of Asian delicacies can be found on the menu. Spice Market also offers a brunch menu and themed nights and events on a regular basis.
Spice Market, W Doha Hotel & Residences, West Bay, Doha, Qatar, +974 4453 5000