On the way back to the U.S. after my trip to the Maldives, I had a 13 hour layover in Dubai. Due to the length of the layover, Emirates Airlines provided me a hotel voucher which included airport transfers, a hotel room and 2 meals at the Copthorne Hotel.
The meals were buffet and there was enough of a selection that I could select enough to have both variety and a filling meal. There were no problems with glutenings.
When I planned my recent trip to the Maldives, I tacked on an extra day to the beginning and end of the trip. It turned out that the extra initial day was a good choice because my checked baggage decided to spend an extra day in Dubai and did not arrive in Male until the second day.
I spent the first night at the Sala Boutique Hotel. Associated with the hotel was the Sala Thai Restaurant. Both were excellent and I cannot say enough in praise.
I ate in the Sala Thai Restaurant twice that first day. The meals were so good that I went back to the Sala Thai the last night, even though I was booked in a different hotel.
The chef was not fluent in English so I ended up talking to the manager prior to the first meal. He initially seemed skeptical when I described my diet. In particular, he didn’t seem it be buying my concern about soy sauce. After talking to me, he left to talk to the chef. Turned out, he also went to his computer and googled gluten-free and soy sauce. He returned after a brief period and said that based on his Internet searches he understood what I was talking about. He said his searches pulled up info about soy sauce and how some brands were gluten-free and some weren’t.
This extra effort really impressed me.
We discussed my diet a bit more and decided the chef could simply alter ingredients a bit and leave out something questionable like soy sauce. There was recognition that the dish might not be as fully flavorful but that was entirely acceptable to me. As a result, I ended up with very tasty meals that I was completely comfortable eating.
The dessert I had deserves special mention since, as they say, it was to die for. It consisted of mangos, sticky rice and a sesame sauce. It was, temperature-wise, both warm and cool. Saying it was memorable is an understatement. Truth be told, that dessert was the main reason I went back to the Sala Thai on the last night.
If you are ever in Male, go to the Sala Thai Restaurant. You won’t be disappointed.