Spice Market

A sushi business lunch? Don’t mind if we do! Reviews

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A sushi business lunch? Don’t mind if we do!

Lunch is not my favourite meal (that would be breakfast. Because c’mon: muffins are mostly cupcakes masquerading as healthy food, and at no other meal would the phrase ‘chocolate chip pancakes’ be acceptable as a main). Mostly lunch loses my vote because it walks such a precariously thin line: you want something tasty and filling without being so heavy you wind up under your desk having a carb nap afterwards. Going with colleagues or business connections makes it even worse: where do you pick? You don’t want them to think you’re going on a plastic-tray-have-it-your-way expedition, but at the same time, you don’t want to appear the glutton who consumed your last button (and everyone else’s) by opting for the luxurious four-course extravaganza. And don’t even get me started on cuisine type; we’re not even entering into that treacherous fire swamp. This is all just too much at midday so I mostly end up quaffing pb&j (peanut butter and jam) at my desk.

But Spice Market has given me a glimmer of hope. They offer two different business lunch options –huzzah. With a regular business lunch menu featuring their Asian inspired staples and a sushi lunch option, this seems at first glance like it could finally oust my peanut butter from its throne. I’m joined on this lunchtime adventure by a vegetarian friend who is also relatively picky; perfect. Lunch is fraught because unlike dining with friends and family, dining with coworkers comes with ever so much more judgment (or maybe that’s only for those of us reared in the 80s on the concept of Power Lunching). So when we pull up to Spice Market, I’m pleasantly surprised to see a menu full of options. But... what’s this? My very favourite dish at Spice Market, their short ribs, are no longer offered at lunch! But... but why? I loved those as a nice option for those who find Asian cuisine scary; melt off the bone meat with celery mash is nicely gentle on the unadventurous palate. The server tells us they’ve been bumped to make way for new dishes, but still I pout. Until my eyes fall on the aforementioned sushi lunch menu.

My friend opts for the regular business lunch, starting with the market salad and followed by the fried noodles, while I’m lured in by the promise of raw fish goodness. The sushi menu includes a choice of two rolls plus sashimi, starting with miso soup. The soup is actually pretty surprising: I’m not typically a fan of Asian soups (it has to do with the texture. ‘Gelatinous’ is not a word I want going near my mouth). My friend’s salad, too, is refreshing and light, with nice flavours – a good way to start a lunch. Her noodles are a massive portion, spilling over the bowl, with loads of seasoning and bits of vegetable. It’s hearty and clearly made to order (no one is in the back mixing up industrial sized vats of noodles here, no sir).

My sushi is yummy; I go for the spicy salmon, which burns so delectably, and one of their signature rolls involving eel. Oh eel, you were such a delightful Japanese surprise. It doesn’t get better than the marinated tastiness at Spice Market. My one quibble: I wish I’d had the option of springing for a third roll instead of the sashimi. My sushi lunch comes with several pieces of sashimi as well as finger rolls. I’m okay with the finger rolls, but I’m not quite at the point where sashimi grills my cheese. It’s just so very raw. I need some rice in there to help me pretend I’m not eating the raw flesh of my vanquished foe (in this case salmon). Still, portions are large without being overwhelming, and so full of flavour we both feel satisfied and content.

But it’s onwards to dessert: my friend goes for the lychee sorbet which arrives at the table in an adorable box, modeled after Chinese takeout boxes in the movies (because everyone knows in real life Chinese takeout comes in sloppy containers that aren’t nearly as cute when you’re shoving your face into them). I go for the ovaltine kulfi with caramelised banana, and have utterly no regrets. It’s chocolate. Dense, rich, creamy and fudgy, with the sharp crack of caramel and the hit of banana letting me fool myself into thinking I’m having fruit for dessert. It’s fantastic and a great end to the meal.

Overall, this is a good bet: I don’t feel too full to go back to the office, nor do I feel like I’ve just had a salad and will be hungry again in about two hours. Maybe I need to have a good rethink of my stance on lunch.

The Bill (for two)
1x Express lunch QR89
1x Sushi express QR140
1x Water QR35
Total QR264

By Time Out Doha staff
Time Out Doha,

Time Out reviews restaurants anonymously and pays for meals. Of course, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or independence of user reviews.

Details

  • Location: W Doha Hotel & Residences, West Bay, Doha
  • Tel: 4453 5135
  • Travel: Diplomatic Street
  • Website

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User reviews:

Posted by: karen on 10 Oct ' 11 at 14:28

the music was too loud ,its a swing sunday but none of her song its swing.the food was great.

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