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October 21 2021 1:39 PM ˚

Gaia: A combination of French, Italian, and local

Gaia 1
Gaia Restaurant’s Pizza Margherita with buffalo mozzarella (Photo: Mario Appiani/JNews)
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AMMAN — If you are ever in the mood for exciting food, Gaia Restaurant is the place to go.

The all-day eatery brasserie, Located in Um Uthaina on the street level of The Conroy Boutique Hotel, has a unique style and spirit. اضافة اعلان

The owner, Ashraf, and chef Rababa indeed did a great job in combining French and Italian cuisine with sometimes a touch of local.

Gaia’s ambience perfectly matches its food, with the entrance a blend of beautiful greenery with a modern open-sky terrace, while the indoor is a cosy area which I would describe as a mix of French and Italian décor influences.

The freshness of the white and brown marbles reminded me a lot of an Italian trattoria, beautifully balanced by gold elements and large mirrors, reflecting a typical Parisian brasserie. The attraction of the indoor area is the shiny metal pizza oven which releases the aroma of fresh dough and tomatoes of the appetizing pizzas cooking inside.

The brown marble counter on the side of the entrance, displays a nice selection of inviting desserts, cheeses, and cold cuts. If you sit indoor, the large glass doors allow you to feel the bright sunlight, giving the place an extra warm feeling.

The menu offers a large variety of choices spacing from breakfast-brunch delicate dishes (available till 1 PM) to an all-day dining menu, which, luckily, I was guided through by Chef Rababa, to get the full Gaia experience.

The “Vegetable Tempura” brought me back to my childhood in Italy, with its perfectly crisp sage and basil tempura, together with zucchini, red and yellow bell pepper, complemented by two dipping side sauces: sweet and sour; and soya and sesame seeds.

From Italy, I was brought back to Jordan with the fettush-like “Quinoa & grilled sourdough salad”: bakleh, summak, fresh tomatoes, onion and thin sliced radish with an international twist of Quinoa and grilled sourdough bread cubes; a very refreshing and tasty salad with a simple dressing of extra virgin olive oil.

 For another unique and extremely well-studied combination of fresh ingredients, you can go for the “Zucchini & hazelnut salad”: a mix of fresh greens, grilled zucchini, Parmigiano cheese flakes and toasted hazelnuts, dressed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

As an Italian I could not but order a pizza, and to best judge the quality of a pizza I go classic, so I went for “Pizza Margherita with Buffalo mozzarella”, which, if you like thin crust pizza, I would definitely recommend this perfectly executed one.

With a piece of buffalo mozzarella and a fresh basil leaf with each slice, each bite is a pleasure to your palate.

To top it all off, I went for the more French-style “Roast Beef Sandwich”, enjoying to the last bite the lovely combination of perfectly cooked roast beef, with the right amount of fresh lettuce, tomato, and Emmental cheese with a hint of horseradish sauce blending perfectly with the warm sourdough bread. On the side, and in complete harmony, pickles and fried thin potato wedges complete the dish.

I would recommend booking in advance, especially if you want to sit in the beautiful outdoor area, enjoy the sun, a drink (alcohol is available) and great quality food.
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