What’s the concept?
The original Rang Mahal was an 18th century Royal residence in India, known as the “palace of colour”, and the team at its namesake restaurant in Dubai clearly understand the concept. The venue is decorated with traditional Indian murals of women covering the walls and a rich red and orange colour scheme. Pillars of stone featuring traditional carvings tower above guests, as do the floor-to-ceiling windows, adding to the regal effect. The restaurant is the brainchild of Atul Kochhar, who achieved a Michelin star at his first restaurant, Tamarind. Shortly after, he gained another at his restaurant Benares.
What are the food highlights?
BBC Good Food tried the Britain meets India tasting menu. The mix of the two cultures is more obvious (and more successful) in some dishes more than others. The Khasta Baingan Tart (made from smoked aubergine, feta cheese and pomegranate sauce) for example, is a fantastic blend of both cuisines. Sometimes the British influence is less apparent (like in the Pantagonian fish, yoghurt rice and green sauce), but that is no bad thing. While the traditional Indian dhal was lacking any notable British flavour, it was delicious – and a highlight of the meal.
How is the service?
The staff were incredibly attentive, from the hostess at the door to the waitress who explained every course in fine detail (especially impressive, given the tasting menu boasts ten courses). Each of the dishes arrived promptly, along with drinks pairing. Make no mistake, you won't get through a ten-course tasting menu quickly, however the service was swift enough to not get boring.
What is the atmosphere like?
Quite subdued mid-week, Rang Mahal is certainly at its best when every table is filled. That said, the restaurant was still two-thirds full, with a mixture of couples and business colleagues. One side of the restaurant is dominated by a glass-walled kitchen, giving you a glimpse into the kitchen, while the other is dominated by windows over-looking construction of the Grand Canal. While it's not a pretty picture presently, once the canal has finished it's bound to offer stellar views.
The Britain meets India tasting menu runs until 18 October. AED 375 per person, AED 550 with drinks pairing. Address: Rang Mahal, fourth floor, JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, Sheikh Zayed road, Business Bay, Dubai, UAE. Tel: (+971) 4 4143000. For more information visit: jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com/dining/rangmahal