Drink & DineReviews

The Insider Reviews: Moli by SHI at Dubai Hills

MOLI by SHI is the latest Chinese restaurant to open in Dubai Hills.

Nestled in the vibrant Dubai Hills district, MOLI by SHI emerges as the latest culinary gem, akin to its esteemed counterpart, SHI Bluewaters. The very essence of MOLI, encapsulated in its Chinese translation of “jasmine,” unveils a world of meaning. Jasmine, revered for its connotations of purity, grace and femininity, surrounding guests with an aura of opulence and refinement upon their arrival. Revered for its enchanting fragrance, MOLI stands not merely as a restaurant but as a cherished sanctuary where the aromatic nuances of Chinese culture unfold. 

Upon entering the restaurant, guests are embraced by the ambience of traditional architectural motifs evocative of an ancient Chinese sanctuary. At the reception, the commanding presence of two guardian lion statues stands as heralds, foretelling the immersive cultural, gastronomic journey awaiting within.

The interior décor is breathtaking, luxurious deep reds and lustrous golds, seamlessly blending opulence with tradition. A celestial dance of a metallic bead curtain graciously cascades from the walls and the ceiling. Its undulating movements, akin to a dragon’s graceful flight, weave through the restaurant, encircling columns and guiding guests on a journey from entrance to end.

The ambiance is further elevated by the sturdy pillars and the intricately bevelled, wooden-carved tiled ceiling, mirroring the grandeur of traditional Chinese structures. Every component merges seemingly creating a captivating tapestry, enticing diners to engage in an experience that unites cultural richness with architectural splendour.

The space offers a blend of cosy, intimate tables and classic round tables, reminiscent of Chinese dining traditions. The round tables are often equipped with lazy susans, facilitating the sharing of dishes during a meal.The seating options also include plush banquettes adorned with intricate Chinese artwork. As night descends, a soft glow emanates from the central floor, casting an enchanting ambiance perfect for elegant dinners. Above the ceiling is adorned with grand hanging jasmine flowers, once again adding to the ethereal atmosphere.

On the menu, the main dishes and appetisers take centre stage showcasing an expansive selection of meat, poultry, seafood dishes and innovative beverage options. Before being blown away with the culinary marvel ahead, we would be amiss to not indulge with a chill glass of Pierre Jouet champagne to start.  Among the menu offerings, the lobster dim sum wrapped in the most delicate little parcels of happiness (translucent dumpling skin) was an eye-watering explosion of flavour and chewy texture. A heavyweight contender would be the light and flaky Wagyu beef puffs, hitting the mark in terms of flavour, texture and presentation. 

The roasted duck, a signature dish elevated with foie gras and caviar over sushi rice was unbelievably outstanding. Alongside, the kongbao belt fish was light and crispy tender, standing well on its own spotlight. The interestingly coffee soft beef ribs were enticingly different and tender.  The menu has been meticulously curated by the skilled Chef Li Yuan Hui, who not only crafts menus for SHI but is also an integral member of the SHI family. 

From the delightful array of desserts, we selected The Lucky Cat, a cat-shaped treat filled with yuzu cream, nashi pear, and dulce de leche crumbs and was absolutely dreamy. 

As Chinese dining customs go, a nod of approval often manifests in the form of a subtle to outright belch, symbolising satisfaction akin to a culinary masterpiece. I must confess, I echoed this sentiment internally as I savoured the delights of MOLI by SHI. 

With its refined ambience and culinary mastery, MOLI beckons as a distinguished destination for elegant soirees or leisurely midday repasts throughout the week. Along with their chic cocktail bar boasting an expansive selection, includes signature drinks inspired by Chinese mythical creatures. Moreover, it extends an invitation to indulge in a sumptuous brunch experience on the weekends, promising an exquisite fusion of flavours and refinement that epitomises the art of dining.

MOLI by SHi is located at Building 4 in Dubai Hills Business Park and will welcome guests from 12pm 7 days a week. To book a table or for more information, call +971 4 276 3338 or email info@molibyshi.com.

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