February 20, 2023

Eating Out Around Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium

Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium is home to the Al Rayyan Sports Club, which hosts the Qatar Stars League football team Al Rayyan, and is one of the eight stadiums to host the FIFA 2022 World Cup. Located on the outskirts of Doha and surrounded by Qatar's desert, you might think that options for hungry visitors within the stadium's vicinity would be few and far between. However, next door to the 40,000-capacity arena is the Mall of Qatar, the nation's largest mall and home to over one hundred food and beverage outlets. The mall is only a 10-minute walk from the stadium, so finding sustenance before or after a visit is easy. Here are our top three recommendations:

Basta 23

mage: Basta 23

Basta 23 in the Mall of Qatar is a Middle Eastern restaurant serving a range of hot and cold mezze and a selection of grilled meat and seafood dishes. Their retro interiors are inspired by traditional street architecture and are sure to transport you to another era as you dine at this cosy restaurant.

To start your meal, enjoy some delicious Mezze like Tabbouleh (a salad with bulgur, finely chopped parsley, tomatoes and mint), Fattoush (toasted pieces of local bread combined with mixed greens and tomatoes) and Hummus (mashed chickpeas with garlic, lemon juice, and tahini). Follow the first course up with any of the speciality grills like the Riech Basta (lamb chops), the Mashawi Moushakal (mix grill) and Robyan Mashwi (grilled shrimps). Basta 23 also serves several vegetarian options on the menu, including the Cheese Samboosa (think samosa), Spicy Potatoes, and Biryani Ragou Khudar (a spiced rice dish with mixed vegetables, raisins, and cashew nuts). If you're looking for something a bit sweet to finish your meal, you can't go wrong with their classic dessert - Cake Al Tamar (date cake with your choice of ice cream)!

Basta 23 is located on the Mall's First Floor in the Oasis section. The Oasis is a central atrium with a revolving centre stage on the Ground Floor. Live events, such as theatre performances, fashion shows and music events, are often held on the centre stage, which you can enjoy from the restaurant's seating above. The view of the centre stage, the dancing fountains around it and the tree-like columns surrounded by green creepers make Basta 23 a great place to relax and lose track of time. You can even watch the football on big screens that hang above the stage.

Location: Mall of Qatar, Ar-Rayyan

Hours: Saturday - Thursday: 11 am - 12 am

Friday: 1 am - 12 am

Contact: +974 5000 1866

Website: https://basta23.com/qatar-mall-of-qatar.php

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/basta.qatar/


Image: Sazeli Qatar

Sazeli, an award-winning Turkish steakhouse in the Mall of Qatar, is worth visiting whether you are at the stadium nearby or otherwise. Sazeli offers an impressive selection of Turkish delicacies, but the main star of the show is meat, meat and more meat. Succulent steaks, lamb chops, mixed grills, aged beef and burgers - the best cuts grilled, roasted, flamed, pan-fried and braised are seasoned to perfection and served with a delicious range of sauces and side dishes. You can choose your cut of meat from their mouthwatering display at the butcher counter, have it prepared to your liking or order from their a la carte menu. Their rib-eye steak and lamb chops are both highly recommended dishes!

Sazeli also serves Turkish breakfast (a spread of seemingly infinite delights), a range of fresh salads and desserts -the delicious baklava is our favourite. There is also an excellent kids' menu, with options including steaks, burgers and meatballs.

The restaurant features a traditional décor with brick walls, wooden tables, and leather cushioned chairs that will make you feel right at home. Sazeli has seating indoors, as well as terrace seating outdoors. Service is top-notch, and the ambience is lively and fun! Like most steakhouses, be prepared to splurge a little here – the meals are not cheap, but they are worth it! Sazeli is the perfect place to unwind after a day of shopping at the mall or a football match at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium.

Location: Mall of Qatar, Ar-Rayyan

Hours: Saturday - Thursday: 11 am - 12 am

Friday: 1 pm - 12 am

Contact: +974 5000 1833

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sazeli_qatar/

Maia Lounge

Maia Lounge Coffee and Chocolate is, as the name suggests, a purveyor of chocolates, chocolate desserts, chocolate fondue and other chocolaty delights alongside a heady array of coffee. The venue is located on the Ground Floor of the Mall with a giant old-fashioned style coffee grinding machine in the front window and copper tubing running in every direction across the ceiling - a scene that wouldn't look out of place in Willy Wonka's chocolate factory.

When you're not tasting Maia's decadent handmade chocolates, cakes and desserts or drinking steaming cups of coffee, you could also try crepes, waffles, cakes, macarons and a host of desserts such as the San Sebastian cheesecake or the Alice (melted chocolate with whipped cream, sliced bananas, and strawberries). Or, if you're looking for savoury, they also have a great selection of light bites such as quiches, pastries, pizzas and pasta. They also have a fantastic selection of tasty beverages, including fresh juices and milkshakes, and a host of shisha options.

You can sit inside on bright, cosy sofas or outside on the shaded terrace or one of the individual cabins for some privacy. Before you leave, check out the handmade chocolates in beautiful boxes and coffee paraphernalia for sale - ideal gifts or as a treat for yourself. Before or after a visit to Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, Maia Lounge is a winner.

Location: Mall of Qatar, Ar-Rayyan

Hours: Sunday - Wednesday: 10 am - 10 pm

Saturday & Thursday: 10 am - 12 am

Friday: 1 pm - 12 am

Contact: +974 5000 2547

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/maialounge.qa

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/maiachocolatesqatar/

Main image: Visit Qatar

Published: November 14, 2022
Last updated: February 20, 2023