Brunch at Toro Toro

Brunch season is back! And we’re receiving lots of information about new brunches, new menus or new venues. As we can’t go to all of them, each month we handpick a few which we think are interesting, unusual, or personal favourites and we share those finds with you.

As you probably know by now team FoodeMag are not advocates of buffet brunches because of food wastage, the time spent walking the floor ‘foraging for food’ rather than chatting to our friends or family. Unless it’s something uber special or unusual we avoid buffets preferring instead menu driven brunches.  

We are huge fans of Toro Toro but have only visited on a few occasions for dinner or events rather than brunch.  We visited last week for the Hola Hola brunch and really enjoyed our experience.

Brunch is served family-style and is based on Pan-Latin favourites from the main menu.  The menu at first looks overwhelming but once it’s explained is easy to follow.

Starters are served hot or cold. Cold dishes you self select from the small station and include some real favourites including some delightful ceviche. Hot starters are brought to your table on small sharing plates and are supplemented with a small dish of perfectly spiced guacamole which is made tableside.

The next course is the signature churrasco grill which involves skewers of beef, lamb, chicken and prawns being brought to your table and carved expertly by the passadors. My guest who usually orders his food well done, enjoyed every mouthful of the perfectly medium grilled steak and lamb. Succulent, juicy, tender and with a hint of burnt fat around the edges, the meat was obviously of a high quality and tasted outstanding.

To help save our ever expanding waistline or to save us having to lift our head to acknowledge staff whilst tucking into a place of succulent meat, there’s a simple card system on the table which you use to indicate whether you want more food from the churrasco grill. Green (Sim, Por Favor) means “Yes please” and the staff will keep on serving you whilst Red (Nao, Obrigado) means “No thanks” or as we coined it “please give us a break”, or “I’m done!”  Along with the meat you get a decent portion of sweet potato fries sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon (tastes surprisingly good) along with a dish of rice and some steamed broccoli.

Dessert comes in the form of a half dome of dark chocolate which is filled with chocolate mousse, chocolate brownies and a few other treats and is thrown in the air only to come crashing down onto the table and shattering into pieces. Before you can bat an eyelid the team drizzle caramel sauce and a fruit coulis over the top before leaving you to realise what has just happened! I’m not the hugest of fans of chocolate dessert and personally would have preferred a different dish, but my dining companion is all over the dessert, declaring it perfect and licking his fingers as he tucks in.

There’s a couple of cocktails on offer at arrival which are made a live cocktail stations, and then you can order standard drinks, wine, beer and sparkling wine which are served at the table.  The atmosphere is lively, there’s some great music in the background and a mix of families, couples and groups of friends which makes for a perfect brunch. Service was attentive, knowledgeable and helpful and last drinks offered close to final orders time without us having to ask which was a lovely touch.

A few small improvements would add to the overall experience, a drinks menu and mocktail menu would be helpful and hot towels served towards the end of the dessert course would make it less of a cleanup. Apart from that, and my wish for a choice of dessert, but that’s just me not being a chocolate dessert fan, this is certainly one brunch that we will go back to.

AED 350 per person incl. soft drinks

AED 490 per person incl. selected beverages

[Images & Video by Debbie Rogers]