I finally got to dine at Asian Flavors, a Filipino restaurant that trended on social media last year. The location is too far from home, more than 10 metro stations away plus a short bus ride, hence I never got to visit despite the curiosity and a few requests from blog readers. But last month, I finally took the long journey because a family member chose to celebrate her birthday in the restaurant.
|Asian Flavors restaurant in Al Qusais|
Asian Flavors is located in Damascus St in Al Qusais. I'm a stranger in that area, so I was glad we went with a family member who has been there before. After a short walk, around 5 minutes, from the bus stop, we arrived to an unassuming restaurant in a dimly lit street.
Inside, Asian Flavors has a homey vibe. The simple restaurant is pleasantly accentuated with bricks, plants and some artworks. The restaurant area is quite small with more or less 10 long tables, so for a large group, reservation is a must. We were only a family of six, so we just walked in the restaurant hoping there's still a space for us on a weekend night. And thankfully, it wasn't that crowded at 7pm.
|the homey interior|
Asian Flavors, as the name implies, offers Chinese, Filipino and Indian cuisines. It sounds like your ordinary Asian restaurant around the corner, but it's not... and it's because of Boodle Fight.
Boodle Fight is a traditional Philippine military style of eating. A variety of food is piled on top of banana leaves laid out on a long table and people eat with hands. Boodle Fight doesn't mean fighting over food, in fact it's the other way around. The concept symbolizes brotherhood, sharing and unity. I think that is why it became such a hit. Us, Filipinos, love to share our food and to eat with bare hands!
|Boodle Fight at Asian Flavors|
|family bonding over fresh seafood and lots of rice :)|
Asian Flavors offers six kinds of Boodle Fight. For seafood lovers, there is Lab-as Seafood which includes prawns, crabs, squid and fish, along with vegetables and fruits. For birthday celebrations, the restaurant has Birthday Boodle which has the usual dishes we serve on birthdays; like pancit, fried chicken, lumpia shanghai, chop suey, plus a beef dish and appetizers, and of course a birthday cake! The four other types represent the festivals in the Philippines; Buglasan, Masskara, Ayuquitan and Sinulog de Tanjay.
Since it was a birthday celebration, we initially planned to order the Birthday Boodle, but unfortunately no cake was available. So, we decided to go with the bestseller; Lab-as Seafood. I think we made the right choice. The seafood were served fresh and perfectly seasoned. I love that it came with different kinds of sawsawan (Filipino dips), ensaladang manga and fish kilawin. My mouth waters as I type these!
|a simple soup to start off the fight... I mean the boodle fight|
|yummy garlic butter prawns (glad I was seated exactly in front of this)|
ensaladang manga (the appetite booster)
|grilled to perfection fish and slices of fresh vegetables|
|two juicy steamed crab and a dollop of shrimp paste|
|grilled squid stuffed with tomatoes and onions|
fish kilawin (raw fish cured with vinegar / Everybody's favorite!)
|a platter of fresh fruits to share after the heavy seafood meal|
Asian Flavors' boodle fight is good for 4 to 6 people. It is a complete meal package which includes a soup, a pitcher of iced tea and fruit platter for dessert (cake for Birthday Boodle). The rice serving is hefty and the dishes are enough for six adults to share. For the price of only 199 AED, it's not a surprise why Asian Flavors became a popular dining spot for Filipinos in Dubai despite the location. It's so sulit that it's really worth the long travel!
Asian Flavors restaurant
Damascus st, Al Qusais
Contact # 04 235 9690
How we got there?
We took the metro to Al Nadha station (Green Line).
Then, we took the X28 bus to Damascus Road 3.
Asian Flavors is located on the other side of the road, 5 minutes walk from the pedestrian overpass.