Emirati chef and restaurateur, Faisal Naser, has launched his second UAE venue. LENTO Dubai follows in the successful footsteps of LENTO Abu Dhabi, a fast-food concept which has garnered a cult following since opening in 2020. The Dubai restaurant is an evolution of Naser’s culinary curiosity, featuring his iconic artisanal smashed burgers and fried chicken, but also globally inspired dishes that will be showcased as limited-edition specials.
A teaser of specials includes Aji Amarillo Prawns (Peruvian yellow peppers & prawn bisque), Seafood Paella (monkfish & prawns), Chiu Chow Chili Wings (with fermented honey), Honey Lasagna, and Emirati Fish n Chips (battered fish, Emirati masala sautéed veg, triple cooked chips, tamarind, and black garlic aioli with grated lumi) – a dish which he cooked with Anthony Demetre (chef and owner of UK Michelin-starred restaurant Wild Honey) for Abu Dhabi Culinary Season 2021.
Highlight burgers include the Mushroom & Swiss (double patties of grass-fed wagyu, LENTO spice umami spice rub, double Swiss gruyere cheese, caramelized onions, brown butter & porcini aioli, caramelized onions), Honey Butter Fried Chicken (local fresh fried chicken dipped in fermented honey & butter emulsion with ranch coleslaw, cheese) and Picante Umami (double patties of grass-fed wagyu, smashed American cheese, green salsa, spicy umami sauce, shallots & chopped jalapeños).
Desserts include Naser’s take on French Toast, Lentoast (French toast of creme anglaise, yuzu & salted caramel gelato), also his highly addictive Brownie Box (six indulgently fudgy brownies made with Valrhona chocolate).
The 30-cover restaurant showcases a minimalist-industrial look. The monochromatic grey palette is complemented by plush tan leather, repurposed wood, and wild foliage. Standout elements of the sleek interior include the KAWS inspired sculpture situated at the DJ booth and hip-hop vinyl records displayed on the wall.
Meaning ‘slow’ in Spanish, LENTO represents how Naser likes to take his time when in the kitchen, “My ethos is quality over quantity and therefore artisanal over commercial. I believe that the best flavours come from slow preparations. At LENTO I use the same concept in the fast-food frame. We make 90% of all ingredients from scratch. The menu and food look simple but there’s a lot going on in each dish. In my cooking I make sure there is always a slow element or slow condiment in everything I cook – black garlic, aged cheese or special homemade vinegar.
“The Dubai restaurant has been a labour of love; we took our time to make sure that we could create something special. The menu will feature the classic LENTO burgers that you can get in Abu Dhabi, but with a host of new dishes that I have been working on for the past year. They are international recipes inspired by my travels and by the amazing chefs that I have been fortunate enough to cook with.”