If you are a carnivorous individual seeking a haven filled to the brim with every cut of beef known to man, this place is a slice of heaven. T-Bones, rib-eyes, tomahawks, striploins, short ribs, back ribs – this place specializes in Black Angus cuts and dry aged beef, a process they showcase upon entry in their eye-catching dry aging climate-control chamber. We visited on a weekday evening for a quiet dinner and left without a centimeter of stomach space to spare. Lucca Steakhouse might just be the best restaurant that offers steak in Sheikh Zayed.
Type of cuisine: Beef, beef, and more beef. There are other options like chicken, salmon, pasta, salad and soups … But why visit if you can’t enjoy the main attraction?
Signature dishes: Meatballs stuffed with cheese, anything from the dry aged section of the menu, and the Lucca Special – slices of beef fillet seared in a live cooking demo at the table and served on slices of fresh baguette with rocket leaves.
Dishes sampled: Upon arrival, we were escorted to a display counter where a knowledgeable butcher explained each cut of beef available and helped us narrow down which choice would best suit our taste. Back at the table, it was very difficult to make a selection as everything sounded amazing but we started with the meatballs stuffed with cheese and the steak tartar as appetizers. Both did not disappoint, the meatballs were juicy, perfectly seasoned and packed with gooey melted cheese while the steak tartar was prepared right in front of us at the table – raw lean steak mince mixed with chili, mustard, fresh onion, egg yolk, Worchester sauce and fresh sliced bread. This isn’t an appetizer for everyone, but tartar lovers will be pleased to know that Lucca’s version is a winner.
For mains, we ordered the striploin steak and the Lucca Special with side dishes; mac and cheese, a baked potato, fried potato slices, and grilled mushrooms with herbs. The steak needs only to be described in one word: tender. It is always a relief to have meat cooked perfectly to order, and for the steak to be at the level of quality for which you don’t need a marinade or sauce is a delight. The Lucca Special was cooked at the table in an awe-inspiring flame ball of a show, which looked a little hazardous, but the staff is well-trained and seemed unfazed by the job. Generous heaps of rocket leaves were served with the fillet slices, and a touch of lemon was added on top for zest. The sides were equally good – the mac and cheese was loaded with four different types of melted cheese and topped with crunchy Japanese tempura breadcrumbs, the herby mushrooms were juicy and well-seasoned, the perfectly crisped potato slices were yummy, and the baked potato would have benefitted with some herby butter or sour cream and chives, but we can’t really complain. Simplicity can be appreciated when the starring role is the meat.
We capped the meal with a simple dessert of ice cream topped with caramel sauce and traditional Turkish ghazle, angel hair wisps of halva, which was a nice sweet note after such a filling meal. All in all, a highly recommended dining experience for an innovative date night (make sure your special someone loves steak!) or an impressive meal with friends and family. You will not be disappointed!
Other menu options that appealed: Having tried the Black Angus cuts, a return visit to sample the dry aged beef and ribs is a must. The smoked beef and cheese platter also sounded amazing.
Beverage options: Soft drinks, fresh juices, and local beer and wine is available, as well as hot drinks.
Décor: Wooden interiors, murals and indoor wall vines create a rustic and masculine feel. This is a place that makes you feel hungry and rugged, and how can you not with hanging cow carcasses on display? It is a memorable and novel dining experience.
Ambience: Intimate, low-lit, good spot for conversation and great service. Impeccable and polite staff, attentive without being intrusive. You will want to come back again and again.
Clientele mix: Couples, business colleagues, groups of friends in their 30s.
Price range: Splurge, but well worth it.
Opening hours: 12pm – Midnight.
Address: Guezira Plaza, main level.
Tel: 0110 200 5599