I was invited to dine at Claw BBQ two weeks ago which of course I immediately said yes to. I’ve seen a lot of advertisements about it on all sorts of social media applications but somehow, I have had the impression that it’s a non-alcoholic restaurant which is why I never had the urge to visit it. I’m not an alcoholic, let’s be clear on that but if I am to venture towards the very busy Downtown Dubai on a weekend, I better have an alcohol in my hand at the end of the night to calm me down. That Thursday that we went there though was surprisingly calm. There were far too few people waiting for the Dubai fountain’s spectacle, I had to recheck my phone’s calendar just to be sure that it’s a Thursday night. Maybe they finally ran out of money after the recent Dubai Sale Festival? Or maybe we were just still too early for the nocturnal people of Dubai, we were there at 7:30pm.
CLAW Bbq is located at the second floor of Souk Al Bahar, next to Karma Kafe. It’s the Souk’s entrance opposite the foot bridge which links Dubai Mall and Souk Al Bahar. My friend H was with me this time, I normally bring her with me to non-alcoholic restaurant invites since, as mentioned earlier, I thought CLAW Bbq was a non-alcoholic restaurant. I also thought that she will really like this place as she looooOOOOOVVVEEESSS seafood just as much as I do.
We arrived at the restaurant on time and were immediately greeted by two receptionist at the front door. Our initial reservation was supposed to be on their outdoor terrace but I had to change it to be an indoor table as I still had cough and colds that night. We were assisted towards the far, right end corner table next to the bar. Going towards our table, my eyes darted in all directions – I was confused. The restaurant was well-lit and the table arrangement was very diner-like, the décor of the whole restaurant kind of implies a rodeo theme but every single person inside it were wearing either a corporate attire or a fancy dress. The restaurant was obviously trying to create a relaxed atmosphere but their location being in Souk Al Bahar kind of ruins it for them. The result then is a really down-to-earth, American-style, cowboy-themed restaurant with the fancy and corporate Dubai people dining inside. I’m not really sure who’s out-of-place, the restaurant or the people? Well, it’s a good thing that we were dressed in normal jeans and pullover – which can pass up as a casual yet trendy look. We were on a safe side. I think?
I love the checkered red and white table cloth, it gives out a fun vibe. My dining partner H was not comfortable with her seat though, telling me that the seat was too low for the table. We later realized from the photos that we took that my seat was actually higher than hers which is why I never had a problem with mine.
The waitress came to our table and handed out their huge menu. They’ve got a wide range of food on offer – burgers, sandwiches, grills and of course the seafood. My eyes of course immediately went towards the seafood bucket list, our waitress recommended their Deluxe Seafood Steamer so that we can get a bit of everything that they have (king crabs, mussels, clams, shrimps, boiled corn and potatoes). As a side dish, she recommended chili cheese fries. I had strawberry margarita from their huge list of drinks menu, they do have a wide range of alcoholic drinks. H had lemon iced tea.
The drinks came first of course, my frozen strawberry margarita was delicious! I don’t know about you but I like my margaritas flavorful and theirs is exactly what I want, probably not what I needed as I started coughing once again as soon as I took a sip. I couldn’t enjoy cold drinks just yet due to my cough, dammit! H’s lemon iced tea came in a jar, it’s so cute! 🙂
A few minutes later, the waitress gave us the necessary tools to be able to get those crabs crackin’ – wooden mallets, crab forks and crackers. I got so excited and I couldn’t wait to use all of it.
Finally, our orders came – huge serving portions, I must warn you.
The chili cheese fries was not chilly at all but extremely tasty which worked well for us. The seafood platter, oh my! Extremely good! I specially loved the shrimps which was fresh and sweet, the mussels and clams were too tiny though but they made up for it with the crabs. HUGE legs of crabs! I can only imagine what chaos it would be like inside the kitchen if all the crabs went lose, walking around like giant spiders. Yaiks! The crab legs were a bit too salty though, for both our taste. I had a go with my wooden mallet and I didn’t really care what mess I made on the table. I had crab meat all over the place, on my shirt and even on my hair.
I lost my crab fork at some point so I was fishing out the crab meat from its shell with my fingers. Lol. Frankly, I don’t know and didn’t care if people were looking at our gross table – I’m going with the restaurant’s concept, crabs are to be eaten this way and I love it!
For desserts, I had carrot cake and H had strawberry cheesecake. Both were good!
After our meal, I went towards the outdoor dining area to check it out. It’s very nice and cozy but they don’t have a view, would’ve been better if they had. I can already see myself hanging out with some friends there with the jumbo margarita glass that they offer.
I passed by the famed mechanical bull and I saw a lady going at it, hilarious! You’ll never see me on top of that bull though, ever (or will you?).
To sum it up, it was a very different dining experience which Dubai probably needs. I love their no-frill concept and the very laidback atmosphere, I just hope that the diners will realize this and dress appropriately. Lol. I will definitely go back and will try their grilled meat and outdoor seating.
For more photos, please do visit my Facebook page: Claw BBQ album.