Sunday, January 22, 2017

Syed Al Biryani - Bring on the heat!

This review is totally from an outsider looking in. I've mentioned that disclaimer since the consensus is divided amongst reviewers whose probably had Biryani from their home countries in Pakistan or India or have compared it with their parent's recipe that they had since kids. I, on the other hand, had only started eating this dish when I came here in UAE 3 years ago and had my fair share of Biryanis to say at least which is good and which isn't, and this is place is definitely one of the best Biryani I've had, probably top 3. More on this after the break. 

It was our monthly date and have decided to eat a biryani, did a quick Google search and there's only one place near that has biryani part of the restaurant's name. If they are confident enough to put that food as part of their name then I can only expect good things from that. 

We got to the place and it's not your generic looking Indian or Pakistani restaurant. It's "hip" and full of printed memes about biryani even has this poster of its history. They've really embraced and built their business around that dish. 

The items on the menu are really affordable, a mutton biryani good for 2 people only cost 25 dirhams. When it was served, I and my wife looked at each other and smiled because, at first glance, it's a steal for the price to serving ratio. They also served it with a small salad (just cucumber and cabbage) and raita (some yogurt that goes along with it) which are free and comes with the meal. 

We've dug into it and checked the pieces of meat because we've encountered at times that though the serving looks big, it's all rice but that is not the case here. There's enough meat to go along with that mountain of rice and it also has a potato, something I've never seen before in a biryani.

Took a spoonful and man, that first bite was an explosion of flavor and heat in my mouth! The meat has zero gaminess in it, it was flavourful and juicy. The rice was really well spiced, it is moist unlike others where their basmati rice tastes like it has been sitting all day somewhere, and each spoonful packs a heat in every bite, my nose and forehead were sweating bullets. It was the exact amount of heat for me, but my wife found it a little too spicy, so she had to balance it with the cucumber and raita. 

I wasn't checking how much meat I had left and didn't notice it's done, so like every biryani restaurant we've been to, I kindly ask if we could have a few more pieces and they gladly gave us two. A definite plus for that. 

The ambiance was good, service was fast and professional, the food was excellent and again, probably one of the best biryanis I've had. Without a doubt, I'll definitely come back here and have more and to experiment on some of the things they have on their menu which I have no idea what they are but if the taste of their biryani is any indication of its quality, then I'm confident it'll be good. 

Best biryani place in Sharjah, they can definitely wear the biryani name in their restaurant with pride.

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