Let me make one thing clear while we’re at it: I’m not a food critic. I simply don’t know enough or have it as my passion. If you want to read splendid food reviews covering the world’s fine dining scene I recommend TableNo.7 instead.
With that said, I know what food I enjoy and can now continue my story. Very recently I got selected as winner when Grosvenor House (luxury hotel within the Royal Meridien Group) and one of their restaurants held an Instagram contest to celebrate their social media success! I very rarely enrol in these kind of competitions and as you all know, I never use my Instagram feed for SFS, contests of to repost Giveaways. I definitely don’t mind others doing it, I just want to keep my feed very stream-lined. To be chosen as winner was such a fantastic treat and I got extremely happy about the prize: a Dinner for Two at the luxurious Toro Toro: a Latin American Fine Dining restaurant inside of Grosvenor House, overlooking the stunning Dubai Marina.
This could only mean one thing: Date night!
How do you guys prepare for a night out? Is it the venue, the food, the drinks or the outfit you start with? For me, it is always the #motn. The makeup is central – I often only wear a black dress, nice shoes and some fun accessories, but the makeup is where I allow myself to elaborate and explore. It can be anything from very classic, romantic to more artistic and interesting depending on the location and what we are doing for the evening. Same goes for Breakfast or Brunch.
A date night in a five star hotel – Dubai-style – could only be made for some Tom Ford Beauty.
There’s no point denying that Tom Ford makes some of the world’s best eyeshadows. For the rest of the world, the new line of quads has been available for quite some time now. Unfortunately, in Dubai, we still haven’t had the chance of trying them out. I decided to go for my all time favourite TF shadow: 02 Cognac Sable. As we all know (and absolutely can’t grasp) is that this stunning quad is now being discontinued? It makes me love it even more and I really treasure it. For our night out I went crazy and added all four shades just for the sake of it.
With my caramel-dark skin, this range of colours can sometimes disappear or look “nude”. They are so close to my natural skin tone. But as TF always make such opaque and pigmented shades, these layers beautifully on me and I can use the darker shade as eyeliner and smoke it out. What I love the very most with this look is the glittery, shiny metallic shade that turns gold/copper/rose gold depending on how the light hits! I wouldn’t say I’m a huge fan of metallic eyeshadows but this one, layered at the centre of my lid on top of the other shades just lifts the whole eye look! It is mesmerising and gorgeous. My dark brown eyes really love this quad.
I have a thing where I try to wear a maintenance free lip-look if I’m going to eat and drink. I don’t mind reapplying lipstick at all, but I dislike the look of a worn-off lipstick at dinner. Often enough I opt for a lip pencil all over the lip to make a great stain and then top it off with a clear balm. Now, Tom Ford himself doesn’t believe in lip pencils. That’s the simple reason why you won’t find any in his beauty range. What you will find instead is a whole team of Lips & Boys, fifty shade of super-sexy lipsticks named after men he’s met and liked. (Yes, I’m quite in awe of Matthew for having a lipstick named after himself).
I didn’t put Matt on my lips, but opted for Liam. A dinner out in a hot, Latin American restaurant filled with contemporary art and dark corners need some dark berry lips. In these pictures, it looks very purple but on me it goes on as dark berries and cassis.
Black dress, black Louboutin’s and a Louis Vuitton SLG later and I was ready for a date with my husband. Introducing Toro Toro.
Image: Grosvenor House Dubai
I had visit other restaurants at GH before; one of them being my all time favourite Buddha Bar. This was a new experience for me, my husband had dine here for business but I didn’t quite know what to expect except I knew that the restaurant has won several prestigious awards and the Chef behind the concept is quite famous.
We entered the spacious restaurant and the first thing that greets you is two enormous, black bulls a bit the style of the one seen on Wall Street, NYC. They are quite cool, but the restaurant itself is even more breathtaking with its two story high ceiling and cool bar at the top, overlooking the water front. The interior in dark wood and elements from blood orange to clementine gives such a warm and lush feeling. A very sensual restaurant where all the cool art pieces on the walls makes it special. Despite being a fine dining establishment, you won;t find amy starch white table cloths here. It is not stiff or upscale in that meaning.
We were warmly greeted by the Restaurant Manager Mr. Sandeep who kindly guided us through the whole menu and the concept which there are a number of cold and hot appetisers to start with, all sharing plates and in theory, I could just go to this restaurant for some drinks and a table full of these wonderful dishes. No need for main course! We told the Manager what we liked and about our food allergies, something the waiter at our table already knew about and recited. It’s always so unexpectedly when the staff actually read the fine prints in the bookings. Love it!
We decided to let Mr. Sandeep order for us as he is the expert of his own menu. I had expected a 3-course dinner so you can imagine our surprise when the dishes just kept on coming.
But first, the most classic touch when drinks arrived at our table the same shade as my TF Lipstick, as we celebrated That Luxurious Feeling turing 1 year old. I know from the reaction at my Instagram, that this really scored some major points with all you followers :).
What we had for dinner:
- Drinks with Peruvian Fresh dark berries and lime
- Smoked Guacamole with nachos
- Chorizo Empadana with Pico de Gallo
- Lomo Saltado Empadana ( beef tenderloin) with avocado sauce
- Cachapas, Venezuelan sweetcorn pancakes stuffed with shredded beef and sour cream at the top
- Beef fillet Anticucho skewers marinated in mirisol chili with rosted sweetcorn and palm heart salad and aioli
This is where we realised they where actually preparing our Main Course and serving new rounds of drinks….
If the “small” appetisers where incredibly tasty and beautifully presented, the main course was no doubt the centre of this menu.
We were treated to a sharing experience for meat lovers, including:
- Brazilian style Pichana Steak on large skewer, cut at the table
- Wagyu Rib Eye so tender no knife would have been necessary
- Australian grilled Lamb Chops
- Achiote marinated Chicken and to this some wonderful traditional oven baked potatoes, some Yuca Fries and Chimichurry which is a huge favourite of mine.
The food! I mean. We were so full halfway through our mains, that it was hard to breath, hahaha, but in a spectacular way! Everything so delicately prepared and served, the waiter so very attentive (even ready with special light when I wanted to snap pictures in the quite dark restaurant, I guess I’m not the first person to photograph the scenery).
We need to pack up some of the food to go, as it was impossible to finish it all but the best thing with Dubai is that a doggy bag is always permitted. No waste of good food. The waiter emerged with the dessert menu but one look at all the delicacies on there and we realised it would never work. We opted for something small; my husband decided on a raspberry sorbet and I had a coffee drink with Bailey’s. I never drink coffee. last time was 3 years ago, but the exception is always when there’s Bailey’s and whipped cream lol. I’m horrible.
Anyway. For those of you living in the U.S, Toro Toro is now available in Washington D.C and Miami (I think?). I can’t say enough nice things about over wonderful night out, except we really needed it. We have worked so intensely for quite some time now and it was the very best way to get an evening out and being thoroughly spoilt.
I may also add that Ms. Erina who’s in charge of the Instagram and social media accounts has become a friend, as we have had many fun conversations up until our dinner date. It is wonderful to see that people with real customer service and people skills are holding these professional positions.
Thank you, the whole amazing Toro Toro Team and Grosvenor House for treating us like Royals. We will be back sooner than you know.♥