JW’s Steakhouse at the Doha Marriott Hotel is a bit of a foodie institution. People who have lived in Qatar for decades have probably been dining there for years; acquired good memories, celebrated great moments and shared special times with people who matter. FACT’s Craig Ferriman returned for a nostalgic dinner…

It has a reputation of reliability with a fan base of loyal customers who return to it frequently from both across Qatar and beyond! One of the qualities people love about this place is that it’s a source of continuity in a city of constant change. You always know what you’re going to get every time you go. Saying that though, there is a very special promotion that I checked out on my last visit that is rare to find if not completely unique in the city’s steak restaurants. They are serving up chateaubriand. This is of course a thick cut of the tenderloin fillet. We’re talking five hundred grams of prime tenderloin. It is the French version of the English roast. It is so big, you could not possibly have it alone which is why it is served for two and makes for an ideal sharing option for dates, couples and those dining in a pair or more.
The chunky beef, best cooked medium rare in my view, is brought out on the wooden trolley and carved before the customer. The sides were impressive and not the after-thought that they can sometimes be in many a steak restaurant. Really good, creamy mashed potatoes, sautéed mushrooms and creamed spinach all filled out the plate with panache and made for a thoroughly pleasing dinner.
By complete contrast, the chef recommended that we have the deluxe seafood platter for two which worked rather well ahead of the meaty main. There was so much seafood, I’m sure it could have fed four! Warm water mussels, prawns, lobster, oysters, squid and plenty else too were all in there. The restaurant has recently created a small terrace area outside in response to the national ban on smoking in restaurants. An unexpected added plus from this, for me, was that some of the tables and chairs in the middle of the restaurant were moved onto the terrace creating more space inside. I felt it looked a tiny bit cramped before but now it feels even better. All the features of a JW’s Steakhouse anywhere in the world remain though: heavy, leather-backed arm chairs, dark wood and intimate lighting for ample discretion.
I’m a traditionalist at heart and JW’s Steakhouse get all the key things right. From sensible starters, to superb steak with strong sides, the desserts don’t let them down at the final hurdle. For me, a steakhouse worth its stripes, will serve up a mean cheesecake. That was the test for me and they really excelled. The cheesecake was a good size with a really creamy cheese and ended the experience on a high. We’ll be back sooner than expected. ✤