Gather ’round friends and families at this cool venue…
Words: Ferdinand Godinez
It’s a sure sign the UAE weather is taking a pleasant turn when al fresco spaces begin to pop up left, right and centre.
Enter Balcon Lounge & Terrace, an al fresco dining spot nestled at Southern Sun Abu Dhabi.
Charming, stylish and relaxing are the best words to describe the open-air lounge, which is spacious enough to accommodate large groups of guests.
The centrepiece is a reflecting pool with multi-coloured LED ball lamps that illuminate as soon as the sun sets, adding a dramatic effect to the laidback setting as the evening unfolds.
Guests can choose to sit around the comfy seats and tables or, if they prefer, gather in the plush cabanas complete with curtains for a bit of privacy.
The menu carries an international selection ranging from Arabic to Indian to Asian and Mediterranean to best appeal to different palates.
We order the Mediterranean platter, a generous dish composed of bresaola (aged salted beef), diced melons, lobster arancini (rice balls stuffed with lobster), marinated olives, chicken bruschetta and tomato mozzarella skewers and basil pesto. The platter – good for sharing for two or three people – comes with a trio of dip: chilli, pesto rosso and lemon mayo.
We also try the crunchy spicy tuna maki rolls for added variety. It tastes good and we love its spicy kick. Needless to say, the plate is cleared in no time.
But the showstopper is the new fondue menu with flavour options that include classic Swiss cheese and blue cheese.
The fondue comes with a choice of side dishes and we opt to pair ours with bread cubes and mini meatballs. We take turns dipping the side dish into the hot melted cheese. The scrumptious dish is perfect for the cooler weather and we highly recommend it for guests to try.
The meal is over but the relaxing ambiance is just too good to make a hasty exit.
We stay for a few more minutes, soaking in the cool air while enjoying a few drinks in between – what a way to end the day and greet the evening in style.
Need to know
We say: Cool down while enjoying good food and drinks | AED 355 for two (and even three) | Southern Sun Abu Dhabi, Al Zahiya | Daily 3pm-1am | Contact: 02 818 4888, tsogosun.com/southern-sun-abu-dhabi