Inspiration Destinations Dubai 9 Dubai Restaurants Every Foodie Needs to Try

9 Dubai Restaurants Every Foodie Needs to Try

September 1, 2023
Ariana's Persian Kitchen at Atlantis the Royal Dubai

Whether it’s dinner in a colossal aquarium, under a star-filled desert sky or in the depths of Old Dubai’s Spice Souk, Dubai’s dining experiences go beyond the ordinary.  

From its extravagant architecture to ultra-luxury hotels and nightlife, Dubai doesn’t do things halfway. And this extends to its culinary scene. The city is home to one of the world’s most competitive dining scenes, with each restaurant doing its best to go above and beyond. It might be an afternoon tea led by a world-renowned pastry chef, or a traditional Arabic dinner with a side of belly dancing – whatever it may be, gourmands everywhere will be dazzled by Dubai’s food scene.

Read on to discover which Dubai spots to add to your culinary to-do list.  

The Royal Tearoom with Christophe Devoille 

The grand Royal Tearoom at Atlantis The Royal, one of the best Dubai restaurants - Luxury Escapes
The Royal Tearoom at Atlantis The Royal.

Housed within Atlantis The Royal, this tearoom serves up an unmatched high tea experience. There are two variations available: the Signature Afternoon Tea or the Emirati Afternoon Tea. The latter focuses on Arabic homemade sweets: luqaimat (sweet fried dumplings), khanfaroosh (fried doughnut bites) drizzled in local honey, and halawet el jibn (sweet cheese and semolina rolls) with rosewater and pistachio. And to wash it down with? Rich and dark Arabic coffee. You can also enjoy more than 30 varieties of tea and 16 different homemade pastries including croissants, brioches and danishes created by chef Christophe and his team.  

Al Muntaha

Set 200 metres above the Arabian Gulf on the 27th floor of the iconic Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Al Muntaha offers breathtaking coastal views and an award-winning culinary experience. Chef Saverio Sbaragli's fusion of French and Italian cuisine creates a sophisticated dining experience, with each dish showcasing his culinary expertise and earning the restaurant its prestigious Michelin star. From roasted poulette de bresse to Australian Angus beef and bluefin tuna tataki, Al Muntaha is one of the best restaurants in Dubai.  

Mimi Kakushi 

Find this 1920s Japanese-inspired diner in the Restaurant Village at Four Seasons Dubai at Jumeirah Beach. The sultry space is low lit and bedecked with textured wallpaper, lush greenery and warm timbers. On the menu is an extensive selection of classic Japanese flavours, from tuna sashimi to truffle miso soup, tiger prawn tempura and oven-baked sweet miso marinated black cod. No time for dinner? Pop in for brunch every Saturday or Sunday from 12pm to 4pm for exquisite bites bundled with alcoholic and non-alcoholic drink packages.  

STAY by Yannick Alléno

The best of French cuisine meets the finest epicurean ingredients at STAY by Yannick Alléno, the celebrated fine-dining restaurant within five-star One&Only The Palm. Gaze over the glittering Arabian Gulf as you savour delicate dishes that have been expertly crafted with a careful balance of texture, flavour and temperature. Honoured with two stars in the Dubai Michelin Guide, STAY by Yannick Alléno offers a choice of a la carte and set menus, with options like wood-fired French turbot with confit garlic, Wagyu beef and mushroom mille-feuille, and natsuc meringue and dark chocolate.  

Ariana’s Persian Kitchen 

The Arabian inspired dining room at Ariana's Persian Kitchen, one of the best restaurants in Dubai - Luxury Escapes
Ariana's Persian Kitchen.

Taste the flavours of Persia at celebrity chef Ariana Bundy’s kitchen located on the ground level of Atlantis The Royal. The restaurant is reminiscent of an Arabian palace, with pastel hues, gilded light fixtures, intricate arches and a high domed ceiling. Dishes like such as rosewater sea bream, pistachio soup and watermelon, cherry and feta salad push the boundaries of the expected, while traditional Persian plates using ingredients like rice, meat, nuts and fruits like dolmeh barge mo (yellow split peas and ground beef wrapped in grape leaves) for example, wouldn’t be out of place in a local Persian home kitchen. The dress code is smart casual and reservations are recommended. 

Al Hadheerah 

For a night of Arabian theatre, traditional flavours and an open-air desert setting, look no further than Al Hadheerah in Bab Al Shams Desert Resort. Live cooking stations sizzle with flame and spice, and serve up grilled seafood, melt-in-your-mouth shawarma and premium steak cuts. Dancers, musicians, falconers and camel riders add a sense of wonder. Cap off the evening with a sweet treat, from mixed baklava to Turkish delight and basbousa (syrup-soaked semolina cake from Egypt).  Dress in smart casual or UAE national dress is welcome. Reservations are recommended.  

Ossiano 

Discover a fine-dining experience unlike any other at Ossiano, located at Atlantis, The Palm. The restaurant boasts one Michelin star and has chef Grégoire Berger at the helm. The restaurant’s setting is another drawcard; Ossiano features huge floor-to-ceiling windows that look into the hotel’s aquarium with its 65,000 marine residents. Take a seat at your white-clothed table and watch as stingrays, sharks and tropical fish glide past. The menu changes seasonally but is always seafood-leaning. Expect some of the world’s finest caviar, Tarbouriech ‘pink’ oysters with a shallot vinaigrette, or Maine lobster thermidor with asparagus risotto. Come dressed to impress, the dress code is strictly smart elegant. Reserve your table well in advance to avoid missing out. 

Carna by Dario Cecchini

No list of Dubai's best restaurants is complete without an open-flame wonder and Carna by Dario Cecchini is one of the city’s finest. Located within the sky-high SLS Dubai Hotel & Residences, this buzzy hotspot is all about sustainable fare and great cocktails. The brainchild of famed Italian butcher Dario Cecchini, Carna embraces a meat-centric nose-to-tail menu that is sure to delight. From succulent picanha and tender tenderloin to flavourful striploin, juicy rib-eye and impressive tomahawk cuts, Carna by Dario Cecchini is undoubtedly one of the best steak restaurants in Dubai.  

Old Dubai Spice Souk

It may not be a restaurant per say, but if there’s one thing every keen foodie should do when visiting Dubai, it’s visiting the Spice Souk in Old Dubai. Here, the air is perfumed with spices and a wander around the stalls reveals pyramids of earth-coloured sumac, pure and ground saffron, and fire-red paprika at spice stalls. You’ll also find Arabic teas, incense, rose petals, dried fruits and sheesha pipes. If all this shopping has built up an appetite, discover a handful of local eateries including traditional Indian cuisine at Bhatkal Restaurant or Middle Eastern cuisine at Al Forat Restaurant – both under a 10-minute drive from the Spice Souk.   

Looking for more inspiration? Check out Where to Stay & Play in Dubai.

Feature image: Ariana's Persian Kitchen, Atlantis The Royal.

About Felicia Arhontissas
A keen traveller and a margarita enthusiast, Felicia is all about getting to the nitty gritty of each destination she visits and discovering its hidden gems (and then running home to write about it).

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