What I remember about Applebee's is nothing positive. The one in Lebanon has even closed down a while back. All I can remember about Applebee’s in Lebanon was their commercial menu, their low category American diner decor and their bad food. While I was in Dubai recently, I heard that Applebee's located in Festival City, has changed – the menu, the décor, the open kitchen…
Applebee’s Dubai shows a real comeback with a new and trendier Look.
The restaurant is located in Festival's City second floor next to the cinemas and the food court. The place boasts light grey colors, natural wood tables, metallic signboards surrounding light bulbs, lanterns pending over the tables and a drinks bar. The décor oozes a warm Texan feel with a touch of style.
Let's start with the menu. It’s a booklet printed on white paper with mouthwatering photos. The quality is far from being commercial. The photos on the menu are mouthwatering. I loved the back cover, the clear sections, the items printed in white, the sections printed in bold and the choices available.
In the menu, you can build your own appetizer sampler, appetizers, snacks, lighter operations, salads, steaks, ribs, entrées, lamb and chicken, pasta, seafood, burgers and handhelds.
I ordered the appetizer platter; the Caesar trio salad, the New York strip, the chicken fettuccine carbonara, theee cheese chicken penne, the cowboy burger and the chicken fajita roll up.
Lunch is served:
- The appetizers platter is served on a big wooden black board, which looks, different and nice. On the board you’ll find a metallic bucket of mozzarella, boneless buffalo chicken on one part, a bowl of salty chips that exactly like Tostitos and spinach cheese…. Tasty quesadillas, fresh chips, crunchy chicken chunks and the delicious spinach cheese. That's a good start.
- The chicken Cesar salad trio is something you want to order but make sure you order to share. A long wooden board is loaded with a mountain of lettuce, three portions of protein (chicken, meat and shrimp), croutons and lots of sauce. Very good quality meat, tender chicken and well-done shrimps.
- The carbonara or the penne are both great. It is commercial, it is American and surely lacks finesse but it tastes good. You feel the flavors, you feel the textures, and the premium quality of chicken charcoal grilled leaving a nice aftertaste, the vegetables within and much more.
- Very good French fries! Thick and salty fries fried with their skin. The coleslaw is sweet indeed but not gooey like the one you find at KFC.
- I continued tasting and tried the wrap. It’s a fresh wrap loaded with vegetables, the meat is well done yet tender and flavorful… I then tried the burger... It’s a good burger indeed – good, juicy and tender piece of meat served with, tasty sauce, crunchy shredded onions in a fluffy bun. Just looking at this huge burger makes you want to jump in.
What I learned after my meal was how generous this brand is. Soft drinks are refilled more than 6 times, plates are huge, portions are loaded and the food is good. I enjoyed the music, the quality of ingredients, the decor and presentation of plates.
I left amazed and happy erasing the last impression I had about this brand back in the days when they were open in Lebanon.