Ramadan Iftar at Channels in Media Rotana | Lady & her Sweet Escapes

Jul 8, 2015

Ramadan Iftar at Channels in Media Rotana

Residents and tourists alike are spoilt for choice in Dubai's dining scene. Ramadan season is no exception! For those who are not fasting, some restaurants serve food discreetly during the day. And when sundown comes, thousands of Iftar options are being offered. 

Last weekend, Ed and I were invited to experience one of the thousands of Iftar buffets in town. It was my fifth invitational Iftar for this season, but I was excited like it was my first because of the venue. It is in Channels - Media Rotana's all day dining restaurant!

Channels is a casual dining venue which is already quite popular for themed buffets on regular nights. This Ramadan, Channels harmoniously combines Arabic and International specialties. So, I was expecting an extra-special Iftar buffet in which I can have a glimpse of the Themed Nights.

Iftar at Media Rotana
Iftar at Media Rotana

It was already Iftar time when Ed and I arrived at Media Rotana. The hotel lobby was as calm as the streets outside. Honestly, I thought it's naturally that way as the hotel is quite far from the crowded city center. I thought Channels would have the same vibe, but I was wrong! 

Channels was brimming with diners! The staff were busy here and there, but we were still welcomed with smiles while we were ushered to our seats. The table reserved for us was the only table unoccupied. Half of the guests were already heartily feasting on their buffet finds, while half were on queue in the counters. Although it means I need to queue for food as well (I hate queues!), I took it as a good sign. Channels wouldn't be that packed if the food isn't good!  

Channels restaurant in Media Rotana
Channels - all day dining restaurant at Media Rotana
Ramadan Iftar at Channels
a treasure trove of Ramadan staples

The Iftar Buffet at Channels is teeming with International cuisine and traditional Ramadan items. The counter nearest to the entrance is a treasure trove of golden bowls filled with dried fruits, nuts and dates, and beside it is a variety of drinks. I spotted a jar of Jallab - a classic Ramadan beverage and my favorite lemon mint! 

Ed and I were very much impressed with the array of starters. Aside from the huge selection of dressed salads, there were Italian caprese, Japanese rolls, Mediterranean mezze, the classics and the exotic kinds from different parts of the globe! To top it off, there's seafood on a bed of ice!      

seafood at Channels Media Rotana
a selection of seafood 
starters at Channels Media Rotana
salads and starters
sushi rolls at Channels Media Rotana
sushi rolls
mezze at Channels Media Rotana
Arabic mezze

The choices for main course were just as fantastic as the appetizers. A good line up of dishes from around the world was continuously flocked with diners. There's a live cooking station for shawarma and of course, a Lamb Ouzi station!

We queued for a minute or two before we reached the buffet spread where we had a little bit of almost everything! For us, the dishes that stood out were Fish Biryani, Thai Chicken Curry, Mixed Grill and Philippines' very own Pancit Bihon with seafood!

Pancit Bihon at Channels Media Rotana
Pancit Bihon
buffet counter at Channels Media Rotana
vibrant buffet counter at Channels

Although the desserts occupied a small corner in the buffet, it was overly filled with choices! There, I got some chocolate-coated melons from the fondue station, cake slices, Umm Ali and a Lebanese sweet called Mohalabiya. It could have been great with a cup of tea, but our server forgot our request. I saw him on his toes with a lot of requests to attend to, so I didn't bother to ask again.  

On the other hand, I noticed a staff refilling the counter before we left, so options were still endless for those who arrived later than us and for those who can't get enough of sweets. 

dessert at Channels Media Rotana
sweet Arabic dumplings 
cake at Channels Media Rotana
one of the cakes in the dessert station
mohalabiya at Channels Media Rotana
 Mohalabiya - milk pudding in mini glasses

Channels has a family-friendly environment for Iftar. The service had a bit of flaw, but was still commendable. The buffet spread, two long counters crammed with delicious options, was just right! It's not too grand, not too simple either, but it is undoubtedly one of the best in town. The queue and the crowd said it all!

Iftar at Channels: 175 AED per person

Check out theses Ramadan offerings at Media Rotana:

Media Rotana
TECOM, Dubai
Contact # 04 435 0000

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