Tashas Al Jalila: A spacious and slick eatery in Al Safa

Tashas Al Jalila is located next to the Al Jalila Cultural Centre for Children – a non-profit governmental center, which aims to help children flourish through creativity and curious exploration. The brainchild of South African restauranteur Natasha Sideris, Tashas Al Safa location marks the fourth outpost in the UAE (with 18 in South Africa). Natasha and her team have taken direct inspiration from their cultural gem neighbours, incorporating whimsical elements that recall childhood nostalgia in the design, including elegant hanging mobiles and animal toy sculptures. There will also be a dedicated children’s play corner opening up inside soon…

Like its sister concepts, Tashas Al Jalila is chic and comfortable. Think big bunches of potted greenery, a beige, salmon-pink, and green colour palette with black and brass elements mixed in, marble tables, terrazzo flooring and walls and a mediterranean feel, with nods to Tashas’ South African roots. The cafe/restaurant is expansive – with many seating options for big and small groups, including an outdoor seating area and lounge (where smoking is also permitted).

Open daily from 7.30am until 11pm, Tashas serves up a variety of meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner – with ample options for healthy eaters and cheat day pursuers. There is also a dedicated kid’s menu with organic, vegan and healthy creations alongside standard favourites. The Huntr visited for a weekend breakfast, taking a seat at opening time whilst the space was nice and quiet (although it soon packed out). From the Tashas Al Jalia-exclusive menu we opted for the Protein Pancakes (85AED) with mandarin segments with strawberries, maple yoghurt & citrus infused maple syrup – the healthy pancakes had just the right amount of (natural) sweetness. And the Mediterranean Scrambled Eggs (69AED) – scrambled eggs with parsley, garlic, chilli, roasted cherry tomatoes, red pepper, crumbled feta, coriander & lemon yoghurt, almond, and flax & pumpkin seed crackers. From the regular Tashas menu we sampled the Monaco (55AED) – which was one of our favourite dishes and comprised poached eggs with wilted spinach, feta spread, red onion, and spicy black mushrooms on seeded or rye bread. Plus the treat-worthy Brioche French Toast (54AED), which is deconstructed and comes with mixed berries or Italian cherry preserve and creme Anglaise.

Drinks-wise, Tashas Al Jalila is alcohol-free and offers a variety of soft drinks, freshly-squeezed juices, mocktails, granitas, coffees and teas. Whilst drinkable, unfortunately the coffee on offer is not of a speciality coffee standard. We tried the Cappuccino (25AED) and a freshly-squeezed Apple Lime and Ginger juice (37AED).

All and all this is a must-visit gem for all foodies. The only things that would make it better would be proper speciality coffee and free wifi so we could get some work done over the delicious plates…

Insider tips: Paid RTA parking available out front. Unfortunately there is currently no Wifi available. Breakfast is served until 6pm.

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