1762 Stripped

1762 STRIPPED

Located in One JLT, 1762 Stripped falls under 1762's umbrella of gourmet eateries in the UAE. Flushed in copper accents, minimal splashes of flamboyant tile, and industrial furniture – the eatery houses a bustling deli and boulangerie too. Popular with JLT's worker bees for lightening-fast lunches, the eatery's got its hands full on the weekends as well. Known for its healthy and wholesome food, hit up 1762 on your lunch hour or for a super-chill brunch on the weekend.

But why the name 1762?
Well, that's the alleged year the term “sandwich” was officially coined.

Reservation
I'm no stranger to 1762's popularity in JLT. It's the cool kid on the block that effortlessly makes friends and gets invited to all the parties, without lifting a finger. Because of this, I totally expected to bump into trouble when booking a table on Friday morning for brunch later that afternoon. Instead of scoffing in my face for assuming they'd have a vacant table on a Friday, a server instantly confirmed my table. Despite being 20 minutes late, the table was untouched.

Parking
Parking is available beside the café in a purpose-built building. Don't worry about scrabbling around for change on your way out – parking is free for 1762's guests throughout the week.

Greeting and seating
Walking up to 1762, we were welcomed by the sunny smile of a labrador casually lapping up the summer vibes in the restaurant's courtyard. Knowing that 1762 has devoted a grassy dining area for patrons with pets shot its reputation up a notch. Sauntering into the restaurant, we weren't greeted by anyone. Instead, we had to go fishing through the crowd just to find a server. Amidst juggling a thousand orders for avocado on toast, balancing the stack of glasses he was holding, and trying not to trip over – he directed us to our table tucked away in a sun-dappled corner.

Knowledge and service of the waiter
In order to cope with the hectic breakfast crowd, our table was served by basically anyone that had a free pair of hands. We placed our orders and paid at the counter. Just in case you've forgotten your reading glasses at home, the counter comes with a massive chalkboard that spells out the menu loud and clear. Our drink orders zoomed over to our table before we did, with the hot dishes scheduled to arrive in ten minutes. Despite time seeming to move faster at 1762 than the rest of JLT, the staff appeared to impressively cope with the pressure.

Our order
We wet our whistles with two bottles of local water and a cappuccino. This was followed by a kale rainbow salad, a mix of Orzo Salad and Super Raspberry Salad, a skinny salmon wrap, jalapeno chicken wrap, onion toastie, eggplant, huevos rancheros, french toast and a trio of protein power balls.

Food
We decided to kickstart the weekend with some color, so we opted for one of 1762’s daily specials – The Kale Rainbow Salad and a mix of Orzo Salad and Super Raspberry Salad. Complemented with a light  dressing, it paced us for our mains. They can make small bowls of the salad which enough to fulfill your appetite and yet allowing you to taste both salads.

We then ordered a Jalapeno Chicken Wrap, an Onion Toastie and a skinny Salmon Salad Wrap. The skinny salmon salad wrap - stuffed with all the superfood goodness of mixed leaves, cucumber, dill, and avocado. The smoked salmon’s bold piquancy sharply sliced through the mellow flavors of the other ingredients. I can now understand why 1762’s salmon-themed dishes makes its crowd go wild. The Jalapeno Chicken Wrap was all the superfood goodness of spinach, chicken, cheese, jalapeno sauce. The Onion Toastie was absolutely satisfying! It hit the spot in terms of just the right quantity and great taste.

I like treating my Fridays like a fiesta, to mark the start of the weekend. So I ordered a hearty plate of huevos rancheros - Spanish for farmer’s eggs. A powerpacked pan loaded with baked tortillas, a couple free-range organic eggs with beautiful yellow yolks that’re so bright I’d recommend slipping on your sunglasses, black bean salsa, avocado, and a refreshing dollop of mint labneh. I enjoyed wading through my huevos rancheros – although found the salsa base to rely to excessively on tomatoes. The baked tortilla, despite being homemade, didn’t have a bold crunch.

We wrapped up our meal with the humble trio of bite-sized protein balls and the much recommended and famous French toast. These protein balls packed a punch with their powerful flavors and ridiculously healthy ingredients. We alternated between bites of peanut butter, coconut flakes, and cacao. All organic, I’d highly recommend these babies over a sandwich for lunch any day. Combine 1762’s protein balls with a double espresso, and you’ve just bought yourself a one-way ticket to the moon. The French toast was a perfect mix of sweet and savory and is served with a scoop of ice cream on the side.

Courtesy extended during the meal
We bumped into some confusion about ordering, and were kindly offered table service despite 1762's standard counter service policy. The service was focused and fast, despite the rapidly burgeoning crowd. Not a single request for ice or a fresh spoon was ignored, either.

Ambiance
The atmosphere at 1762 was chaotic and clamorous with rustling serving dishes, social chatter, and a not so chilled out "chill out" playlist. We were informed that the air-conditioner was struggling to cope with the summer heat, so the doors were flung wide open letting in warm gusts of air from the outside. Our sun-dappled corner table quickly transformed from a picturesque breakfast nook to feeling like we were sitting in a microwave. Despite this, 1762 was teeming with everyone from families with newly born babies to couples on their first date. Its outdoor pooch-friendly policy will win my heart over anytime I'm asked my opinion of the restaurant.

Price
Our light and bright brunch for two landed us with a final bill of 153 dirhams.

Overall, would you return?
Yes, but not just for the food. 1762 is one of the painfully few restaurants in the city that permits dogs on site. I'm always on the hunt for pooch-friendly eateries, and this just made my list! If you're all about food fads, it's got charcoal lemonade and does a sexy avocado on toast. If you're gluten-free, vegan, or just looking for some healthy grub – I'd recommend hitting up 1762.

Chef's recommendations
Huevos Rancheros, Eggs Benedict, and the 1762 "Down Under" Steak Sandwich.