The Fairmont Dubai sits on the busy Sheikh Zayed Road close to the Trade Centre roundabout and is a property which has undergone a period of transition in recent months.
With F&B concepts throughout the city opening (and closing) at an alarming rate, the Fairmont Dubai has not been immune, with the recent closure of outsourced venture and Hollywood export Catch. Meanwhile, the new internal venues operated by Fairmont themselves have been carefully planned to capitalise upon niche gaps in the market and are doing remarkably well because of it. First was Noire a dine in the dark concept, followed in quick succession by the 1990s themed House Party Bar with its distinct nostalgic vibes which have resonated with millennials to great effect.
The latest addition to the Fairmont family is Trophy Room an atmospheric sports bar situated adjacent to the lobby. Entering through the heavy door the establishment is not what you’d necessarily expect from a sports bar, boasting a bright, clean feel that’s distinctly modern and as far removed from the sticky tabletops and decades old carpets that you might usually associate with this kind of venue.
Trophy Room is definitely looking to modernize the bar experience and features eye-catching decorative touches such as a living wall adorned with sporting memorabilia (think boxing gloves, crickets bats and mounted basketballs) wrapping around the semi-circular bar. Eleven large television screen are dotted around the venue offering excellent viewing no matter where you may be seated and with the quick download of an app, guests can listen to the sporting commentary in a variety of languages via their smartphones (now that’s convenience).
Trophy Room may only have the capacity for 75 diners but it never feels cramped. A mixture of booths and stand alone tables are generously spaced and the tan coloured upholstered chairs come with small arm rests for additional comfort. Large windows allow the entry of light so you don’t feel as if you’re stuck in a cave and unaware of the time – a common trait of the sports bar. Unfortunately, the smell of smoke does prevail throughout the venue and is noticeable from the moment you enter.
The beverage list covers a vast array of beers, wines, ciders (hooray), spirits and a number of well-mixed cocktails, with the signature drinks named after sporting slogans, with the Home Run (ginger infused vodka, , fresh ginger and lime) being our pick of the bunch. Away from the action on the screens, board games such as jenga are provided to offer additional entertainment during the downtime between matches.
It’s clearly evident that Trophy Room has been designed with Instagram in mind and the menu is a marketeers dream, with a number of unique ‘hooks’ to draw diners in. The gargantuan beast burger is just one example, a unique burger which if devoured within 20 minutes is on the house (we weren’t up for the calorific challenge on the day we dined).
Trophy Room’s menu takes the best of pub grub from both sides of the Atlantic, so expect everything from British fish and chips, through to Canadian black truffle poutine and everything in between! Spoilt for choice we begin with the impressive tuna tartare (AED 65) comprising of avocado, edamame, sesame and lemon. It’s a zesty dish that resembles a plated crown and boasts a remarkable freshness (though the tuna cubes may be a touch too large to eat easily) and represents a dish we would certainly order again.
The citrus prawns (AED 80) with quinoa and kale make for an exciting salad alternative, but the lobster mac and cheese (AED 95) was the dish that really sold the menu to us! After a disappointing run of mac and cheese recently, the version at Trophy Room mixes copious amounts of white cheddar cheese with large chunks of lobster, but the beauty is that the cheese does not overpower the shellfish, allowing the delicate lobster flavour to permeate the sauce and carry through to the final mouthful.
One of the things that caught our attention when the Trophy Room initially opened was the gold dusted chicken nuggets and chips (AED 185) – well this is Dubai after all! Kudos to the Fairmont Dubai’s kitchen and marketing team for coming up with such a compelling dish and one that is sure to become one of the city’s talking points. The first thing we notice as the dish arrives to the table is just how GOLD the chicken and fries are, resembling the fools gold we used to study in geology lessons at school, it certainly takes some time to become accustomed to the visual. The chicken is coated in corn flakes which provides a crisp texture to the protein but a touch more seasoning is required to really elevate the dish into the realms of greatness.
For the equivalent of £40 we wonder what UK chicken connoisseur Pengest Munch would have to say about this particular dish and being from East London, where chicken shops are an integral part of the post-club, post-night bus escapades of an evening out, this is certainly the most decadent chicken meal we’ve encountered.
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All gold errthang! 🤩 Dubai is a city of suprises but have you ever heard of gold covered chicken and chips? This elevated pub grub is a far cry from the Chicken Hut’s and Dixy Chicken’s that these East Londoners are accustomed too and can be found @trophyroomdubai inside the @fairmontdubai. Cornflake covered chicken pieces generously dusted in gold! Would you order this? 🏆 #gastronogram #finedininglovers #chefstagram #artofplating #dubairestaurants #dubaieats #foodstagram #foodcritic #restaurantreview #dubaifood #wheretoeat #foodiepics #foodshots #foodspiration #restaurantstory #foodieheaven #foodtourism #chefsfeed #menwithcuisines #f52grams #beautifulcuisines #wheretoeatdubai #foodtraveller #restaurantlife #bestrestaurants #goldennuggets #beautifulrestaurants #trophyroom #friedchicken #invited
While far less ‘bling’ the British staple of Shepherds Pie (AED 76) may not offer the same visual effect as the chicken, yet the flavours are spot on. Presenting nicely seasoned lamb pieces in a rich gravy and topped with a creamy mashed potato, the dish continued the run of more than generous portions offered at Trophy Room.
If you have enough room and haven’t quite satisfied your appetite for gold, don’t miss The Rocher (AED 38) an upsized version of the classic Christmas chocolate which resembles a golden rock on the plate. Break open the thick chocolate exterior and the interior presents an appealing hazelnut mousse which verges just on the right side of sweetness.
Visiting Trophy Room for the first time we weren’t entirely sure what to expect but with the friendly team, large portions and unexpected atmosphere, Trophy Room makes for one of the city’s most appealing venues when it comes to sports and a venue that slots easily amongst the likes of The Exchange Grill and Cavalli Club as unique concepts that offer diners with excitement at the Fairmont Dubai.
While we are by no means sports enthusiasts, we easily succumbed to the charms of Trophy Room thanks in large part to the menu of comfort foods executed to a very high standard. If we had one request it would the addition of a traditional British Roast dinner to the menu, for a roast beef or chicken on par with the rest of the menu would likely result in us becoming semi-regular patrons.
Location: Fairmont Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road, Trade Centre Area, Dubai
Social: Instagram / Facebook
Hours: 12pm – 2am
Phone: 04 311 8316
Out & About UAE were guests of Trophy Room. All views are our own and photographs are © Out & About UAE.