I have been to Dubai ten times already, and each 5-day trip was a full food experience one… I have tried enough sandwiches, cookies, burgers, Italian food and desserts to feel the nostalgia of this city that moves so fast. Surely there’s more to discover and more to enjoy, but for the meantime, I think I've discovered enough places to give you my Top10 list of favorite restaurants and tasty discoveries to satisfy your taste buds in the city that never sleeps.
Chez Charles: The Ingredient is Passion
French class in the heart of Dubai... the restaurant is called Chez Charles. When a passionate entrepreneur decides to open a restaurant putting all his effort to make it happen, you can’t but expect perfection. It feels "French" from the minute you walk into the minute you leave; white tablecloth, salt, and pepper kills, two kinds of Echiré butter, soft and tender French bread... fine glasses, Bernardaud plates, Laguiole knives; every detail is thought of meticulously.
State 88: Food with Emotions in Dubai
Owned by a Lebanese group, State 88 is an international restaurant serving cuisine from all over the world. American, Italian and European, at State 88 happiness is guaranteed. Chicken, beef and seafood, the menu has it all: a selection of appetizers, interesting mains and a collection of coffee creations which State 88 specializes in.
Al Falamanki Dubai: Traditional Lebanese Vibes in the UAE
The restaurant opened in Lebanon in 2008 as a nostalgic cafe that transports guests back to 1960s Beirut. The founders came up with the concept after hearing about Al Khalil Al Falamanki, a Lebanese wrestler turned bodyguard who lived life to the fullest, travelling the world and winning over local and foreign celebrities with his charm.
Social House Dubai: A Beautiful Place Serving a Tasty Breakfast
Because the place looks so nice and inspiring. Because every design item makes you want to come in and live the experience, I stopped for breakfast. Social House is a marvelous masterpiece of architectural breakthrough and also has some great things to offer. Walk in and take the complete tour around the terrace, open kitchens, seating area, cake display and beyond. Sit and order everything.
Baker & Spice: Breakfast on the Fountain in Dubai
I loved the eggs Benedict and hollandaise sauce taste. The fresh fruits in crunchy granola. The thinly sliced avocado laid on fluffy toast with a flavorful sauce. The poached eggs are cooked to perfection, a heart that flows like water and an envelop that slides in the teeth. The pancakes, different from any I’ve ever had, blueberries and fruit compote. The pancakes are not chewy and fluffy enough.
Lebanon’s Babel: Lebanese Hospitality at La Mer Dubai
At the end of La Mer, a big house stands out; it’s Babel. “Babel Sur Mer," the fish restaurant of Babel Lebanon is now open in Dubai, at La Mer. Surrounded by water and greenery, enter into a beautiful restaurant decorated with style and simplicity. Black, white table covers and wooden chairs, the beauty is how the light comes from everywhere down to the floor.
Aubaine: French Style Breakfast in Dubai
Lebanese owned, with the first restaurant in London, Aubaine has a premium location at the entrance of The Dubai Mall. Aubaine offers a French selection of gourmet creations all produced in-house. From cakes to breakfast, passing by lunch and dinner, at Aubaine, you are promised perfection. Enjoying my morning treat with a view, I stopped for a selection of eggs, pancakes, and smoothies before continuing my tour around the Dubai Mall.
Din Tai Fung: Asian Perfection in Dubai
Recommended by many and considered to be one of the best Asian restaurants in the world, it was a necessity to try Din Tai Fung. Located in the second floor at Mall of the Emirates, it’s a unique experience for the eyes, ears, nose, and palate. The experience is exceptional from start to end, welcomed professionally, pampered and treated like a king. The waitress is one of the most professional I’ve ever met.
Prime Grill Dubai: The Tomahawk Ribeye and the Brownie Sundae
Prime Grill, the newest restaurant to open in Dubai is located at the Galleria Mall. It’s new; it’s fresh, it’s trendy and sexy; the meat restaurant has it all. From a state of the art tea machine never seen before in the region, to wooden tables and leather menus, the experience is guaranteed to be memorable. I sat for an early dinner prepared to enjoy the finest of beef cuts.
Beit Maryam: Homey Middle eastern specialties in JLT Dubai
"I grew up in a house where food was essential, a major part of our daily life. A house in the village, open for everyone to come in and share with us that meal prepared by my mum, Maryam who I respect and adore. I dreamt of turning my house into a restaurant and knew that I would be doing that one day... I am Salam, a passionate cook, a housewife, the daughter of Maryam, passionately running my restaurant in JLT, a few blocks from where I live." I just met Salam, a genuine lady who tells her story with such passion, I felt like staying with her all day. "Beit Maryam," is home away from home; it’s about food like you eat it at home, no complications and no sophistication; Salam runs it like she operates her home Kitchen. I enjoyed my experience today and will surely be sharing it with all my friends visiting Dubai.
Ibn AlBahr: A Taste of Lebanon in Dubai
The view of the beach, a table full of exceptional mezzes and grilled fish along with the company of Family or Friends makes this one of the best experience you can have in Dubai. Hidden away on a small private beach on the shore of the Palm Jumeirah, Ibn AlBahr is a true gem to be found.
Ayamna: The Palm Lebanese Restaurant, Dubai
So many of us still yearn for flavors that are deeply rooted in our childhood, ones that are connected to treasured memories delicately built with family and loved ones, amidst settings that are equally special. The name Ayamna is born from this very feeling. Ayamna is a destination that invites us to revive our priceless memories and to feed our passion for authentic Lebanese delicacies, served within intimate settings surrounded by family and loved ones.
Flooka: Renowned Lebanese Seafood in Dubai
At Flooka, you will experience the best in Mediterranean seafood with a Lebanese twist. The chefs offer seafood mezze such as makanek - traditional Lebanese mini sausages, made the Flooka way with fresh fish instead of lamb and our scrumptious fish taouk - kebab and samak bil meleh. You can also choose from an array of fish from the ice display and have it cooked in the clay oven, charcoal grilled or deep fried.
Logma: Heritage Emirati Food with a Touch of Modernism in Dubai
The folks at Logma proudly share the rich heritage of Emirati and Khaleeji cuisine in a friendly, authentic setting, perfectly reflecting Dubai’s flair for combining the traditional with the current.
Zaroob: Fast Casual Bites from the Levant in Dubai
ZAROOB, literally translates to “small alley”. It is a concept inspired by the traditional street food vendors found around the Levant region. ZAROOB captures the best and most authentic aspects of wholesome, simple cooking and brings, in its adaptation, the history of Arab street food to a modern audience. The live cooking stations, juice bar, open kitchens and diversity of decoration from the Arab world make it lively and enjoyable for diners. ZAROOB highly emphasizes on sounds and scents representing the traditional street feel of the Levant . An outside terrace provides the perfect dining space during the cooler seasons with a setting reflecting the interior and the concept.
Kaakunada: My Favorite Lebanese Kaak in Dubai and Amazing Knefeh
You can't talk about Kaak without remembering Lebanon, and Kaakunada really succeeded in reflecting the Lebanese spirit with their food and even with the phrases they use like "Taza Ya Kaak" which means Fresh Kaak and "Ta3a Bawred" which means come and chill. You can find Kaakunada on Kite beach in Jumeirah, they open from 10 in the morning till 12 midnight during weekdays and from 8 in the morning till 2 am during the weekend.
Breakfast at the Intercontinental Hotel Dubai Festival City is the Richest I’ve Seen
The biggest, the richest and the cleanest breakfast I’ve seen is more of an all-day lunch buffet than a simple morning treat; you dream of it, it exists! Anything you might imagine, the buffet of dreams including mix and match choices from the four corners of the globe. Twelve live cooking stations, long and endless displays of fresh offerings, delicious preparations and this, in a pleasant and refreshing setup created of wood and colorful lines coming all the way from the high ceiling.
My Second Time at Eataly Dubai: I Love this Place!
This is my second time at Eataly Dubai, but probably my tenth time at one of the many Eataly branches around the world. Every time my experience is unique and enjoyable. Having dinner in a supermarket is new and Eataly has definitely managed to make it fun. Luxurious, white walls, high ceilings, open kitchens, and fresh aromas... you're transported to Italy and back.
SALT: Dubai’s Famous Burger is a Must Try
They say you can’t visit Dubai without having a burger at SALT! SALT is Dubai’s favorite burger as claimed by many, famous for a couple of years now. Located on Jumeirah public beach, SALT occupies a large area spread on two hundred meters or so offering an outdoor and indoor experience, a drinks bar, and a burger station. Never tried SALT before so here I was!
Benihana Dubai, Jumeirah Beach Resort: A Lovely Experience
Famous for serving Sushi and Teppanyaki for the last 50 years, Benihana has been a favorite for its live cooking islands and fine quality sushi. After visiting the one in Beirut, Passing by the Dubai location was a great comparative review for my blog. A wide restaurant, dimmed lights, an open kitchen and the teppanyaki grills with two high stools bars for experience dining. Happy people, smiles, and laughs with chefs shouting and people applauding, the vibes are funny.
Tomo: Exceptional Japanese Flavors in Dubai
Out & About Dubai: The idea behind TOMO is to bring a real taste of Japan to the UAE, via a selection of authentic Japanese dishes, refined by the team of masterful chefs. The authenticity shines through and there are particular elements to many dishes that have evidently been handcrafted by the kitchen team. It’s also important to note that the majority of ingredients and products are imported directly from Japan, with the fish flown in fresh twice-weekly (on Wednesdays and Saturdays).
Aprons & Hammers: Dubai's Award Winner Seafood Restaurant
With its unique setting on a moored dhow, Aprons & Hammers makes for a fun place for a casual meal, be it lunch or dinner. The boat boasts pretty views over the Marina and neighboring yachts, making for a pleasant, laid-back holiday feel (providing you can stomach the slow rocking motion of the boat).
Semsom a New Lebanese Restaurant; NOW OPEN at Dubai Festival City Mall
Enjoy the real taste of Lebanon with families & friends by the waterfront promenade. Semsom at Dubai Festival City Mall welcomes you for early Lebanese Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner. Semsom was born out of a discussion with a taxi driver in Washington DC who didn’t know what Lebanese cuisine was all about! Ever since that day, and with branches in Beirut, Zahle, Jeddah, Kuwait, Muscat, Dubai, New York, and many more markets on the way, Semsom has been on a mission: To take Lebanese cuisine all over the world!
La Farine: A Contemporary Café and Bakery in Dubai
Grandiose like all the other restaurants around the JW Marriott Marquis in Dubai, La Farine is a contemporary café and bakery spread across different sections and many open kitchens. It's a French café, but it boasts a kind of English style. Wood, black metal, Chesterfield sofas, light green fabrics, a high ceiling, but enchanted with French tunes.
Diwan Al Muhanna: Flavors of Damascus in Dubai
I remember Muhanna Damascus to make the tastiest Baraze2 one can ever have, along side a selection of sweets my parents always got with them when they visited the Syrian capital. Al Muhanna is now open in Dubai on Sheikh Zayed road offering a selection of Syrian specialties in an oriental upscale ambiance.
Zahr El-Laymoun: True Flavors of Lebanon in Dubai
Laying my back on the sofa, looking at the purple buckets transformed into lights and enjoying the beautiful mood of this restaurant, I was transported into another dimension where old tables and wooden chairs, flowers and positive vibes will make you fall in love with the real Lebanese experience.
Em Sherif: Lebanese Homey Fine Dining in Dubai
It's probably the finest, most upscale Lebanese restaurant outside Lebanon. A restaurant that feels like home, a home setup and homey food, details that your mother would use on her dining table. That's Em Sherif, a Lebanese restaurant in Bourj Khalifa Dubai Mall.
Five Guys Dubai: Same Quality as New York and London
After London and New York, Dubai's Five Guys here I come. A beautiful place of red and white colors, reflective ceramic walls, light wooden tables, and an open kitchen. I love the spirit around here, a fast food chain of burgers that's literally taking the world by storm. It's Five Guys and it's now open in Dubai.