Oh, and serves high quality pub grub…welcome to The Lion by Nick & Scott.
A British-style pub was probably wasn't the guess of most and Scott, for one, admits it was initially out of his comfort zone.
Not surprisingly, perhaps, seeing as he and Nick are more readily associated with fine dining, both with their Souk Madinat restaurant and previously alongside a certain shouty celebrity chef.
That’s not to say the likes of beef in Murphy’s pudding with mash and gravy has been turned all fancy – it’s just made better and presented with a tad more finesse in a setting that has an easy-going vibe.
In a nod to the Friday brunch tradition, The Lion is offering a set menu of favourites with selected unlimited beverages, all served to your table (also on Thursday evenings).
The result makes for a civilised afternoon, or evening, in a setting that is casual and ready built for socialising amid plenty of open space.
The selection of music alone made for much discussion during our visit as some of us searched deep into our memory banks to identify songs and bands from a generation ago – Sleeper, The Bluestones, House of Love and Pigeon Detectives providing much head scratching.
Landing as part of the sharing starter section of the brunch, these impossibly tasty spheres feature a quail egg at their heart and are lifted by a gentle wholegrain mustard dipping sauce.
Close behind are veal sausage rolls, whose light pastry and finely herbed meat filling rendered the accompanying BBQ dip a little redundant.
Also easing you in is a silky chicken liver pate with a generous zesty chutney and plenty of really good toast. Finally, buttermilk chicken wings are taken to a different level by lime and chilli seasoning to surely make a bucket of these essential on a future visit.
We’ve already touched on the Murphy’s pudding – great pastry and an intense meaty taste, only slightly let down by mash that could have benefitted from a little more butter.
You’ll struggle to find a UK pub that doesn’t have a take on curry and The Lion is no different.
It offers a lamb biryani that again secures gentle sophistication in its execution.
A good amount of tender meat chunks appear in a well-flavoured, handsome portion of vibrantly coloured fluffy rice topped with crispy shredded onion and cashew nuts. The result is flavoursome rather than spicy and very filling.
For dessert you choose feom a sticky toffee pudding – as good as it looks according to the neighbouring table – and a deconstructed apple crumble.
Bathed in a perfect vanilla custard, the latter bowl of comfort food vanished in seconds.
All this nourishment is complimented by a “wash it down” list of drinks that boasts come canny cocktails.
Alongside selected beer and house wine (including an often elusive rose option) there’s the playful Tequila Tipple passion fruit and lemongrass margarita; a Maybe Martini of apple, basil and vodka; and the Spicy Sling, shrewdly combining gin with chilli, soda and pineapple.
Instead, a relatively simple and pleasing place that wouldn’t look out of sorts in London’s cooler suburbs given some subtle nudges above Dubai’s other English pub wannabes.
Along with business partner Viktorija Paplauskiene, the pair confirm they have taken inspiration from pubs where they spent time while living in the UK.
“We’ve always wanted to be landlords so when the opportunity to take over came our way, it was something we couldn’t really say no to," reveals Scott. "Myself and Nick are big sports fans so to combine that with our love of food...it’s the perfect mix."
THE brunch deal is available on Thursday from 7pm and on Friday as a flexible rolling three hours beginning at 2pm (until 9pm).
THE package costs AED300 for three hours, based on house beverages. Reservations can be made at firstname.lastname@example.org or via 971 (0)4 359 2366
THE Lion has other themed specials during the week, including Ruby Tuesdays, with unlimited curry; Wednesday steak & ale pie and a pint night; and fish & chip Thursdays.