Thursday, 1 March 2012

Hilton Dahab: Food

This holiday was my first taste of an 'all inclusive' package. All inclusive is food and drinks. Yes including alcohol.

When I was researching places to stay, it was really hard to find anywhere that anyone said 'the food is awesome'. Hilton had mixed reviews.

So as far as the food went. Buffet breakfast was served from 7am till 11am. Lunch was served at the beach bar from 11 till 5pm. Dinner was again Buffet, served from 7pm til 10pm. Room service was available 24/7. And they had 2 A La Carte restaurants, one Italian and one seafood. But due to the hotel only having a 30% capacity, neither A La Catre restaurant was open.

The buffet dinners, served at 'Mirage' had an international theme each night.

As I arrived on Monday at 5pm, my first meal was a dinner... The night's theme was french. I was shown to my table and given one of the most hideous glasses of wine ever (incidently, I steered clear of wine for most of the week after that).

As I made my way up to the buffet, I was actually impressed with their selection, and tried pan-fried liver for the first time, and really enjoyed it. Had two delicious stuffed quail, again a first. Then realised that I didn't have a starter, so my post-main starter was flatbread with hoummus and tzatziki. Then a selection of sweets.

Breakfast day 2.

The breakfast selection was fine. Many breads, pastries and cereals to choose from. A selection of juice. Brewed coffee and tea brought to the table. A bar of fruits and yoghurts. And a continental selection of cheeses and cold meals with some salad items.

The hot selection (sans-bacon) was generally the same most days and has a chopped up beef sausage and onion nosh, grilled tomato and cheese, french toast, and usually a bean concoction.
 This is the view from the inside window table. But for most of the week I sat outdoors in the sun.

 The best part of the breakfast buffet was the cook-to-order area. This lovely chap would do omelettes, with your choice of onion, cheese, peppers and tomato. Eggs cooks to your liking, pancakes, fresh felafel and my favourite of the week: waffles.

I really started to miss bacon by the end of the week. But overall a good breakfast buffet.

Day 2 I decided to try the room service for lunch. This was not included in the free food items and was added to my room bill. I ordered a Greek salad and filet steak.

 Unfortunately, both items were quite average. The Greek salad was really flavourless, and was predominantly iceberg, not-quite-ripe tomato and the feta tasted like cloud... Ie, you could see it there, but when you put it in your mouth, you tasted nothing much at all.

The steak, served with rice and veges was nice. But it was a slow cooked steak, tender and flavoursome, but slow cooked, nonetheless. The veg and rice were fine.

Needless to say, I didn't bother with room service again.

 I can't remember the theme for this nights dinner. But this may have been my favourite dish of the week. It was a baked fish and garlic potatoes with and artichoke salad, and a salsa. Every bit of fish I tried in Dahab was amazing. Dessert was lovely too!
 Egyptian night was my favourite theme night. I started with grilled aubergine, flatbread and marinated feta salad. Everything on this place was scrumptious.

For main I had Ocra Ragu, baked fish with tomato and peppers, Barbequed chicken and carrots. This was a plate of yum.

 Freshly baked bread and butter.

 The barbeque chef.
 Tables outside at night were lovely.

The Egyptian night desserts were really nice. Baklava, a dense, moist maple cake and a fully little slice that exploded when I touched it.

The other night I dined in the restaurant but didn't take photos was Italian night. Where the highlights were the beef and the canelloni. The beef was divine very moist and tender and tasted like it had been cooked for a long time. But after discussions with fellow guests, we agreed that although the food was fine, good at times. A five star restaurant ought to be serving better than the cheapest cuts cooked for long hours. The general consensus was that the buffet was okay, but really could be improved upon.

Lunches were served from the beach bar. You could eat it in one of the alcoves around the bar, as shown. Or they would bring with food to your recliner.

The food was very snack-bar. With sandwiches and burgers, pizza, fish and chips etc. It was nice, tasty food and eating on the beach was lovely. But I only did lunch on the beach twice.

The service was often slow on the beach, which is disappointing, and I wonder how they cope when actually filled to capacity. Drinks on the beach were good, and tipping a bartender early in the day often meant good table (ummm sunbed) service. The beach bar ran out of beer on several occasions.

Most of my evening drinks were taken here, at the Windjammer bar. It had a lovely atmosphere and most night had a breeze that blew from the windows across to the courtyard. Beer here also ran out of occasions,and a number of fellow guests also mentioned on various times they would run out of everything from tonic to rum, pretzels to bottled water. I do hope management looks into this.

I think next time I went to Dahab, if I stayed at the Hilton, I would go on a B&B rather than all inclusive. The meals eaten it town were spectacular, as opposed to quite good.

No comments:

Post a Comment