Dubai is famous for being a city where many cultures cross — and what better way to find out more about culture than to taste its cuisine is there? (Well, perhaps read about it or talk to people, native to these cultures, but these could be done while eating!). This article will go through six great restaurants and cafes you can visit in Dubai to do just that — and eat deliciously.
Where to Stay During Your Trip to Dubai?
It’s best to rent apartments in Downtown Dubai — you’ll be living in the heart of all culinary happenings that are occurring in this majestic city.
Dubai’s Restaurants That Are Worth Your Attention
Clap is a restaurant with mainly Japanese cuisine which is located on the top of DIFC – Dubai International Financial Center. First, there’s an Omakase menu — in Japanese, that means “I leave it for your [judgment]” — that you can order for 750 or 1150 AED, and CLAP’s chefs will create a careful, delicious selection of means for you, specifically.
Food is amazing: salads with truffles and dried miso, juicy gyozas with wagyu beef and parmesan cream, salmon teriyaki, tonkatsu mayo, sashimi, rolls (rolls with crispy shrimp and chu toro are especially good) and so much amazing, brothy soups. There’s a vegetarian menu (tofu teriyaki — you can’t even imagine how many people have waited for this basically forever), risotto with quinoa, rolls with shiitake mushrooms, and all that.
CLAP’s selection of drinks deserves a special mention because they create cocktails inspired by Tokyo and crafted to invoke Feelings: there’s, for instance, a cocktail with sencha tea and gin, pepper, and lemongrass called Takushi Ride — fresh, a bit spicy, so good for the night out.
#2 Zuma Dubai
One of the most popular destinations in Dubai, Zuma Dubai has an amazing atmosphere and is very good for group outings with friends or colleagues — and food is always good. It is located almost in the very heart of Dubai, not far from the Burj Khalifa tower.
There’s interesting menu options like Osara Branch — a menu that’s offered to all people at the table, with dishes selected by Zuma’s chef: usually, there’s a combination of, among other things, miso soup, tataki with truffle, veggie gyoza, sashimi, oysters and grilled wagyu steak. It’s accompanied by soft drinks, prosecco, or wine/beer of your preference.
If you go to Zuma, try ainame no oumi yaki to sappari kousou and ko ebi no tempura yuzu togarashi mayo — that’s grilled sea bass with a dressing of chili and ginger and tasty shrimps.
#3 Marina Social
Marina Social is a Michelin restaurant, an ideal choice when you are planning to spend a business meeting or a romantic dinner. Here you will find everything you need to plan your event. Marina Social specializes in cuisines of almost all countries, particularly, British and French cuisine. There’s also a vegan venue — right now (December of 2021), it has a tasty berry sorbet with apples, french fries, risotto with truffles, and cool salads with almonds and datterini tomatoes.
There are menus for Monday evening with a glass of wine (steak tartare is included), a night with steak lovers (choose between wagyu sirloin and Black Angus fillet), an outing with six people with Marina Social’s signature dishes (like Tomato & Burrata), and many other menu options for adults and kids.
#4 Nightjar Coffee Roasters
Opened in 2017, Nightjar was created by coffee lovers for coffee lovers. Taste delicious coffee and have a hearty snack after — although the main expertise of the cafe is coffee, there’s a delicious menu for breakfast, lunches, or, like, all-day freelance work on-site.
Try delicious caesar with crispy chicken and anchovy, veggie lasagna with vegetable ragu (very spicy!), poached eggs with paratha. They brew the coffee on-site, of course, and you can ask for vegan coffee options with oat milk. Your priority should be trying their amazing, immersive pour over — it’s 25 AED, and it’s the best coffee you’ve ever tasted.
#5 LPM Restaurant Dubai
If you miss European cuisine in a cozy atmosphere, you should visit the La Petite Maison, a French restaurant that looks like a small art gallery, light and full of air.
Try sweet tomatoes and some lemons with freshly baked bread and season it with olive oil while you’re waiting for escargots with parsley and garlic butter. Chicken in lemon sauce, French toast with spicy ice cream, sweet and marinated peppers, grilled aubergines, and a wide selection of pasta and desserts are all there for you to enjoy.
Hutong is another Michelin-starred restaurant on our list, and it’s also located in the heart of Dubai — also in DIFC. This place is one of the most famous places for lovers of Chinese food. Hutong provides its visitors with delicious and occasionally viciously (tastily) fiery Northern Chinese cuisine.
It’s recommended to visit a few times to indulge in their dim sum menu (it’s during lunchtime — and it’s better to have a reservation) with veggie spring rolls, half-roasted Peking duck with pancakes, chicken Siu Mai. Also, try the red lantern meal selection for eight dishes, with so many good drinks (Sichuan mule cocktail & Passion Mandarin Fizz are especially good in this time of the year) and main courses like Yu Xiang crispy eggplants and wok-tossed beef.
Hutong also offers vouchers for dinners and meals based on their many menus — ranging from 400 to about 1100 AED, they are a great gift for your friends and colleagues who appreciate spicy & savory cuisine.