Restaurant Review: Alieía By The Sea, Jeddah

Restaurant Review: Alieía By The Sea, Jeddah

A culinary haven of fresh Greek flavours, where every detail, from the sea-inspired decor to the imported catch, transports you to the enchanting landscapes of Santorini
24 January 24
Alieía By The Sea, Jeddah Image source: Iman AlDabbagh

To transport yourself from Jeddah to Santorini, head straight to Jeddah’s north corniche.

Tucked away at the end of a winding pathway, in a Greek-style whitewashed building, is Alieía By The Sea, perched right on the water’s edge (befitting for an establishment with a name that means a place where one goes fishing in Greek).

This gourmet eatery is the latest creation by Chef Basma Elkhereiji, founder of The Social Kitchen and The Social Bakery.

Step into the spacious interior, designed with an open layout and large windows to maximise the restaurant’s breathtaking sea views. Above, a glass ceiling makes the walls glisten in the sunlight. Tall olive trees serve as centrepieces that connect diners to the rich Mediterranean heritage, while ceramics adorn the walls, adding a touch of rustic elegance to the ambience.

As I make my way to my table, I’m greeted by staff dressed in crisp white outfits with light blue accents – echoing the colours of the sea and sky that dominate the restaurant’s views. I pass by a display of the day’s fresh catch, presented on a bed of crushed iced. This seafood restaurant receives a shipment of fresh fish straight from Greece twice a week – sea bream, sea bass, Dover sole, and more. Fish is never frozen at Alieía and the restaurant supplements its imported stock with fresh local specialties such as najel and hamour.

Once seated, I start things off with a drink.

As someone with a deep appreciation for a well-crafted mocktail menu, the drinks at Alieía do not disappoint. The Desert Rendez-Vous with its fresh and sour tones of basil, pineapple, and ginger is an instant favourite, while Apollo’s Punch packs some spice with an unexpected pairing of Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce, and raspberry puree.

For appetisers, I order tzatziki, a staple Greek dip made of creamy Greek yoghurt, cucumber, garlic, and dill. I also get tyrokafteri, a mix of feta cheese, yoghurt, green chilli, and olive oil. The accompanying freshly baked herbed pita is fluffy and warm, and will have you ordering more throughout your meal.

The Greek salad stands out as fresh and flavourful, and the eggplant chips, thinly sliced and lightly breaded, are not to be missed. I recommend you enjoy this selection of appetisers with the moreish olive oil presented on the tables, specially pressed in Greece for the restaurant.

For the main course, my waiter recommends pairing the grilled sea bream – fresh from a shipment that arrived just two hours before my arrival – with the truffle pasta skioufichta. The white, fleshy fish is grilled to perfection and filleted tableside, while the truffle pasta’s subtle flavours nicely complement the freshness of the fish – a winning combination. Other favourites I didn’t have the space to try this time round are Alieía’s lobster giouvetsi and the grilled tiger prawns.

I’m delightfully surprised to find white coffee on the hot beverage menu. The orange blossom infusion is my personal digestive of choice and is not often found outside of traditional Middle Eastern restaurants. After a few sips, I’m ready for the grand finale – Alieía’s take on karidopita, a much-loved Greek walnut cake. This one is a heavenly blend of warm chocolate mousse, walnuts, and vanilla ice cream, surprisingly light and decadent all at once.

Alieía By The Sea is currently accepting reservations from 4.30pm-10pm. And we highly recommend booking an early spot to enjoy its exceptional seaside experience, particularly as the sun sets over the horizon, casting a warm glow across the water – there’s truly nothing like it in Jeddah.
Ash Shati, Jeddah 23417

Imagery with thanks to Iman AlDabbagh