Al fresco dining is something that we’re lucky enough to cite as pretty much a year round occurrence thanks to living in this part of the world and no where quite does outside eating like Shimmers on the Beach.
Nestled in one of Dubai’s best locations, right on Madinat Jumeirah’s stretch of private beachfront, this casual restaurant and lounge boasts spectacular so-close-you-can-touch-it views out towards the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah.
Recently refurbished, Shimmers offers a barefoot luxury take on dining where white washed woods and turquoise textiles that match the colour of the sea take centre stage, creating an unrivaled Mediterranean feel outside of the Med itself.
Reached via Jumeirah Mina A’Salam, arriving at Shimmers is a treat in itself. Hidden almost from view of the hotel, it’s private seclusion only marred by the swaying of neighbouring palm trees. Shaded from the searing Dubai sunshine by a wooden canopy, Shimmers keeps its decor to a minimum, reminiscent of a Greek taverna. The odd ceramic plate adorns a painted stone wall and giant planters dot the decking. On the white sand that forms the bar area of Shimmers, low sofas and beanbags sporadically line the sand lit up only by the faint glow of a candle. It’s impossibly romantic yet super stylish at the same time. The sort of place you would come with your other half one night then your friends the next.
The menu comprises of authentic Greek cuisine curated by Greek Chef Yiannis Katsikas. With both a lunch and a dinner menu you can choose to dine against the backdrop of the brilliant blue sea, listening to the waves crash against the shore at lunchtime or under the twinkle of the stars in the evening; both just as mesmerizing an experience as the next.
The menu (both lunch and dinner) begins with traditional sharing dishes such as Tzatziki which is a creamy concoction of cucumber,Greek yogurt and olive oil and Tyrokafteri which is an amazing Feta cheese spread with Dill and Capsicum. Not only did we opt for both of these dishes, we also accompanied our dips with some rustic breads for the table and succulent beef meatballs off the dinner menu.
Main dishes are a plenty with expertly grilled seafood, oven baked traditional dishes and tasty, fresh salads and pastas.
Stand out dishes on the lunch menu into Pappardelle Pasta, a mouthwatering mix of braised beef and rich tomato sauce and the Mushroom and Veal Bacon Pizza which is the perfect light snack in the sunshine.
The dinner menu boasts even more choice with Baked Lamb Chops accompanied by Greek style Sautéed Potatoes and topped off with crumbled feta cheese a stand out dish alongside our the traditional Greek Mousaka made with eggplant, lamb & mince beef and Béchamel sauce. A must try dish for anyone that is a fan of Greek cuisine.
Deserts follow the Greek theme with lots of fresh fruit and custard based dishes for you to try (and enjoy).
Shimmers is one of those venues that you might stumble upon accidentally, but when you do you feel as if you’ve discovered one of Dubai’s best kept not-so-secret-secrets. The food is delicious and about as authentic tasting as you can get in a Middle Eastern country, the view is incredible and the service is typical of Jumeirah. In two weeks I have visited Shimmers twice and that as they say, is the very best testament; repeat custom.