Dubbed as the unconventional brunch, 3in1’s Urban Picnic is one of the coolest al fresco brunches in town. 3 in 1, by the way, is the name of the restaurant and it doesn’t mean that you’re getting 3 of something in 1.
What you need to know about this brunch is that it is centered on the British menu and almost everything on offer are British staples like Shepherd’s pie, fish and chips, and roasts. Even the decors have hues of blue and red that of course, represent their flag.
The brunch starts at 1 pm and for an additional AED100, you can book a cabana and have the option to lounge under the blue skies around Vida Downtown’s pool area which by the way looked huge in pictures but turned out to be smaller in real life.
If you ever settle for the brunch outdoors, you will be given a picnic basket that you can fill with treats from the spread inside the main restaurant. It’s actually nice as I saw some guests doing that.
Prior to coming, we booked a cabana at 1 pm but came in early because we had to go somewhere after that. We arrived at 11 am and were allowed to use the pool but even at 1 pm, we didn’t get the chance to have a cabana because we were told that it was fully booked and they can’t do anything.
We were somewhat disappointed because we were looking forward to having brunch by the poolside but we had no choice but to eat inside. It would have been a total disappointment if not for the very courteous staff that explained the situation. I really have to commend their staff as they were polite and offered a good seat inside to compensate for the fact that we can’t stay in a cabana.
When we went inside, I saw the spread for the starters, some cold cuts, a lot of different kinds of bread including pizzas and pastries and a section for the drinks.
With the exception of the pizza station, everything was pretty much self-service. It was kind of a let down because I was expecting the food to be served and I need help, especially with the drinks. I would rather have someone explaining to me what the drinks on offer are instead of me slicing the lemons and the other fruits that will go well with my drinks. I honestly didn’t like that part. I came back almost 3-4 times but there was really no one there and I saw other guests slicing lemons and strawberries and pouring their own drinks.
The main courses are served to your table though and whenever you’re ready, just let them know and within a few minutes, they will bring them to your table. I was surprised at how efficient they were when we asked for the main courses. They were ok, some of the dishes were a hit and some were misses. The roasts and the chicken were perfect in my opinion but I found the fish & chips to be a bit bland which is ironic considering that it’s a British menu and there’s no dish that screams British more than the fish & chips.
By this time, we’re almost done but we can still see people coming in and the DJ still playing nice music outside. Everyone seems to be having a good time and we finished our meal with some sweets. Some of the desserts were nice too and I like the fact that they offered tea or coffee after we ate.
All in all, I love the Urban Picnic concept wherein you go to a brunch to relax and just take your time but sadly, the execution wasn’t up to par and there were some minor issues that need to be addressed. I really like it and I want to come back to try it again but hopefully when the improvements are made so I can have a better experience. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a popular brunch and there were a lot of guests but these were just my observations and so at least, you know what to expect when you go there.
Valid until: Every Friday
Price: AED 295 per person including soft beverages | AED 345 per person including selected house beverages | Additional AED 100 per guest for a poolside cabana and pool access.
Time: 1.00pm to 5.00pm