The Huntr visited Dubai’s first Jamaican joint – Ting Irie – a while back, and we still can’t get their nachos out of our minds. The cheerful waiter did say “these aren’t your average nachos, man” (in a Jamaican twang) but nothing could prepare us for just how “un-average” they were. First of all they aren’t even nacho chips, they are some sort of heavenly, deep-fried pastry creation (official name: Jamaican patty crust nachos). And they are topped with a gorgeous mixture of juicy, slow-braised, pulled oxtail, gooey cheddar cheese fondue, fresh avocado cubes and a sharp cherry tomato salsa. They melt in your mouth and are incredibly moreish. In short: They are a must-order, and have earned themselves a place on The Huntr’s bestest ever dishes list.
So what else did we love about Ting Irie Dubai? …Pretty much everything, man! The Huntr ordered the Chips O’Mon Burger (griddle smashed Angus beef burger, melted white pimento cheese, regional fave – Chips Oman, and a warm Toronto bun – really great and worth your attention), the warm lobster roll with sriracha butter (unbelievably good – and slightly on the small side, but maybe that’s just us being greedy?), the Spitfiyah Jerk Chicken (the only let down, it wasn’t bad, it was just average), the O.G Fried Chicken (so amazing, juicy and perfect), the One, Two, Three Chips (addictive), Oxtail Cocobread Sandwiches (yum) and for dessert we did the Carnival Funnel Cake (must-order), and Warm Cornmeal Pone (probably wouldn’t order again, mainly because we want to try everything else and been there, done that). Also: The folks at Ting Irie have a secret handshake, which if used, grants you a complimentary mocktail with your meal. How cool is that?
Naturally, Ting Irie’s decor is in keeping with the Jamaican cuisine on offer here, and the aesthetics of this Downtown Dubai restaurant offer a pleasing visual feast to match what’s going on on your plate/palette. When the weather cools down and the outdoor terrace opens up, we imagine that this will be one of the best spots to enjoy an MBR Boulevard street-view lunch or dinner. For now, the A/C is cranked up high inside, and the quirky indoor restaurant and bar areas offer solace from the harsh summer sun. The bar area is particularly nice, with a big, artistic wall featuring black and white leafy wallpaper, and a cosy little corner table for four, which would be ideal for a double date dinner.
All and all, we give Ting Irie a big thumbs up. And we’ll be back, terminator style. The service was top notch, the food was really great – tasty, fresh, great quality produce and something different (this is, after all, Dubai’s first Jamaican restaurant). Ting Irie is an ideal place to visit for a catch-up lunch with friends (when it’s quieter), a fun, buzzing family get-together for dinner, or a unique date (the mocktails come in all sorts of impressive vessels, and will definitely put a smile on your date’s face). Ting Irie is also family-friendly and offers a special children’s food menu.
Insider tip: Ting Irie had a set-lunch deal on offer when we visited. Check the website and social media handles for the most up-to-date information. The restaurant opens at 12noon and closes at 1am.
Update: Ting Irie is now licensed!