O Cacti, Mexican House & Cocktail Bar
A big HELLO to everyone and a very, merry, happy Thursday to all of you!
Yesterday’s experience was one of a kind for us. Not because we consumed extraordinary food or received first-class service, no it was special because some of our most loyal followers joined us. Always on the run for something new, we decided to finally try out O Cacti, at Pier 7. “Pier 7 ups the ante for the Dubai fine dining scene. A signature building with seven different restaurants on each of its floors, Pier 7 is a dining destination that celebrates diversity in the art of fine dining….” is what it states on their website, and we can only agree.
The concept of Pier 7 is not only unique and perfectly suitable for an extraordinary and trendy city like Dubai, it is also a huge controversy to areas such as the Gold Souk, the Creek or Satwa. In Dubai, one can have it all!
As said, we have dined at Pier 7 before, however did not manage to try out all restaurants yet. O Cacti was not number one on our priority list to be honest, but we thought of giving it a try after looking at their menu on Zomato a couple of hours before. O Cacti offers a wide range of Mexican starters, the typical Quesadillas and Tacos, a variety of beef and chicken dishes and four different types of seafood. Compared to other restaurants, the menu might look limited on the first glance, but then again it is a mix of traditional Mexican dishes and comfort food and suits all tastes.
Upon arrival, we booked a table outside, the Eastern European hostess lead us to our table. Initially she presented one of the high tables to us, we decided, however, to take a seat on the “normal” 72cm high furniture.
While following her around the huge terrace we noticed her unique way of walking. The dress was a bit too short and the heels a bit too high. Observing the hostess, we ended up in a big discussion about the ‘must – see’ and ‘must – not – see’ hostesses around the city. As unique as Dubai’s offer on restaurants is, the variety of well-dressed and over-dressed hostesses, is just as diverse.
Once we sat down an Indian waiter handed over the dinner and drinks menu to us, and left as soon as he originally appeared. Seconds later another waiter paid us a visit and offered us drinks. We ordered sparkling and still water, as well as a beer. It took more than 10 minutes for the drinks were served. Meanwhile, a third waiter came to take our food offer. Dining in a Mexican restaurant, we were very surprised not to see at least one Mexican national in the house – even for Dubai this is quite unusual.
We ordered Tuna Tartar, Ceviche De Pescado Y Ananas (rice, avocado and pineapple) and a Trio De Ceviche followed by the salmon filet and the rock sea bass, both served with vegetables and rice.
Another couple of minutes passed and our drinks arrived. The waiter was confused about the two types of water and leaned over us while serving our company on the other side of the table. He moved around glasses instead of walking around the table and was highly confused when we asked for a glass to go with the beer. The waiter was not only confused about the drinks order, he was also not aware of the food he was actually serving a couple of minutes later. To his defense, the Tartar and pineapple Ceviche looked very much alike; however instead of checking with the chef before serving the food, he placed the Trio De Ceviche on the table, showed us the other two starters, placed them in front of us, lifted them up again and walked off. He then ran over to one of his colleagues to ask for his advice about whom to serve what, came back and placed the plates in front of us again.
Not only the similar food presentation, but also the dominant taste of avocado and chili, made it very hard for us to taste the difference between the two dishes ourselves. The amount of pineapple used was limited, and the tuna tasted like salmon. Don’t get us wrong, it was good, but nothing special.
Once we were done with our starters, the main courses followed in no time. As said, we were out with special guests and followers of Servicexcellence and therefore analyzed the service together. Up to this point, all three of us agreed that it is always worth trying out new places, and that service, food and ambiance offered in a perfect mix and combination are very hard to find around the area these days. The surplus of restaurants and dining options can be overwhelming at times; dining at O Cacti felt like one of these overwhelming experiences last night.
When the mains were served we received what we expected. A nicely cooked salmon filet and a perfectly grilled rock sea bass. We were stuffed off all the rice and therefore decided not to have any sweets to round off our experience at O Cacti.
Overall last night’s service did not blow us away. The lack of product knowledge, service delivery times, and the fact that we kept pouring our own water at all times was a bit of a downer. Nevertheless, the overall attitude displayed by the staff at O Cacti was good and the beautiful ambiance and atmosphere at Pier 7 added a lot of value to our experience.
Will we return? Most probably not to O Cacti, but definitely to one of the other restaurants at Pier 7, we did not have the chance of trying yet.
Have a great and happy weekend all of you!
Take care and make the most out of it,