First things first – Sun& is a ridiculous name for an establishment – it is incomplete and unfinished and if it’s meant to provoke and add a playful mystery to the place, it doesn’t. I just keep saying Sun & Sand Sports.
However, that’s the worst thing I will say about the place in this review. Except that their insistence on using pale yellows and pastel blues means that they come across as a package tour booking company.
OK, that’s the worst thing I will say about Sun&. The rest is pretty good.
We arrived at a fairly empty Sun& Restaurant, and as we were guided to our table, we were politely warned that they were fully booked starting from 5 pm onwards. I glanced at my watch and decided that we could probably order, eat and leave before the reservations arrived. However, it was almost one o’clock, so we were going to have to hurry.
Sun& is tucked away in a random building on the exit side of the palm trunk overlooking one the Palm fronds with the fancy villas. I bet the residents of the villas are furious that the common folk can now watch them on their private beach while sipping fizzy wine and nibbling olives.
Sun& is a licensed (no idea how) Mediterranean restaurant and lounge with a small but pleasant terrace and a clean and uncluttered interior. The menu is concise and depending on how hungry you are, splits into small, medium and large plates, with about seven items per section. They do have a section on the menu called “Graze” and I looked around for any cattle, sheep, horses or goats that it might apply to, but didn’t see any. Then I realized it wasn’t really food suitable for livestock and just a cute way of saying starters. The Sun& name makes more sense now.
The Serb took her time in reviewing the menu choices, thoughtfully announced that she wanted a “nice fresh chicken salad” and therefore ordered the beef Carpaccio. I ordered some other smaller items, such as the Cauliflower croquettes, the meatballs, chicken skewers and a three dip appetizer.
The meatballs arrived just as the theme song for Game of Thrones came on the sound system – it cast the meatballs in a whole new light. I expected an immediate beheading of some sort. Perhaps there already had been, hence the meatballs. However, despite the dramatic music, they were superb.
Overall the food is tidy, smart, familiar and fun – the Carpaccio came in a thicker cut with a well-constructed truffle mayonnaise. The cauliflower croquettes were moreish and even surprised the meat loving Serb, who normally turns her nose up at such concoctions. The chicken skewers were juicy and served with a refreshing tzatziki sauce. The beetroot dip was worth the price of the dish for the colour alone. The bread was slightly undercooked and doughy, but had a good salty flavour to it.
The staff were capable. However, I would be worried if their sense of urgency remained the same during their peak hours; they were certainly relaxed and happy to work at a leisurely pace. Perhaps they had all thought they applied for Sun & Sand Sports vacancies and were in a constant state of bewilderment.
Sun& is a great little spot for the residents of The Palm, and a good attempt by Nakheel to improve the experience of Palm Living. My recommendation is if you are in the area, try swing by – it’s a casual, inexpensive restaurant that serves perfectly enjoyable food. If you have difficulty finding the place, there is a Sun & Sand Sports at Ibn Battuta mall as an alternative.