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The Pitch: Atelier M Restaurant

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Executive chef Mohammad Islam is proof that if you follow your passion, anything is possible. He started his career in computer engineering in the States but, during a fishing trip to Montana, decided to pursue his real passion – fine dining. Without funds to study, he apprenticed in kitchens in New York and Chicago and he cites his time at the Mercer Kitchen under the mentorship of chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten as his greatest influence.

Atelier M is a fabulous spot for lunch or dinner. There’s an art-deco inspired lounge for evening entertainment, and the rooftop terrace is one of a kind, with views across Dubai Marina and the Arabian Gulf, day and night. It actually reminds me of my home town, New York.

I am inspired by the ingredients of the Mediterranean, as well as the preparation techniques used. I’m passionate about using the best-quality local, organic and seasonal produce in my dishes… but there always needs to be a bit of magic that goes into the mix!

Guests like to share things from our menu. This is especially so with our brunch menu, which is inspired by traditional family recipes from across the Mediterranean with a contemporary twist. You know when you see couples or friends dining, and they ask for “just another bite”? That’s the concept here.

I’d say my tuna tartare appetiser, featuring Hawaiian tuna, avocado and truffle juice, is my signature dish – it’s certainly one of the top-selling. But I can’t reveal more: if a magician tells his secrets, the magic disappears!

Another signature dish everybody loves is our pumpkin ravioli. All our raviolis are made fresh, by hand. It takes a lot of time and energy, but the taste is amazing. For me, it’s all about the taste.

One of the most popular desserts right now is the hot chocolate fondant with green tea matcha. It’s a true Mediterranean dish, but it features a fantastic Japanese- French fusion. Diners also love the trio de sorbet fait maison and the lemongrass crème brûlée.

I’m inspired by elderflower right now, a traditional summer flavour and one that reminds me of art, history and tradition. It’s fragrant and refreshing, and goes well with summer fruits such as strawberries and raspberries, or tart fruits like gooseberries. At Atelier M, you’ll find it with cheesecake and panna cotta.

Atelier M
Where: Pier 7, Dubai Marina
Contact: +9714 450 7766

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