Food and Drink

Thanks to its role as one of the great international crossroads and the truly cosmopolitan nature of its population, Dubai offers cuisine from all over the world. French, Italian, Spanish, Greek and Scandinavian establishments vie with the culinary delights of India, China, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan and Korea. Then, of course, there’s true Middle Eastern food, with Moroccan, Lebanese, Iranian, Jordanian and other specialities on offer as well as such local Arabic delights as hareis (succulent slow-cooked lamb with cracked wheat), matchous (highly spiced lamb served over rice), fattayyer (bite-sized pastries stuffed with cream cheese and spinach), mehalabiya (a mouthwatering pudding topped with pistachio nuts and rose petals) and esh asaraya (a cream-topped variation on cheesecake). A good tip: for great value genuine Arabic food, try the long-established citywide Automatic chain. This is one city where in-house hotel restaurants do extremely well – and offer a vast array of choice. Many hotels have six or more different outlets to provide a culinary tour of the world of fine food – and value often matches that of stand-alone eateries. In what is officially a Muslim city, the entirely cosmopolitan nature of the populace means alcohol is widely available and pork and shellfish find their way onto many menus.


Al Diwan

Within the Metropolitan Palace at Deira, there’s a generous selection of Lebanese

meze delights and grilled meats then at midnight the lights dim, the music kicks in,

the belly-dancers do their thing and the prices escalate.

Address: Metropolitan Palace Hotel, Al Maktoum Street, Deira

Phone: +971 (0)4 227 0000



Transport yourself from the modern exoticism of the Arabian Gulf to the decadence of the Gulf of Mexico at this atmospheric New Orleans’ flavoured slant on the Deep South. Classic American Cajun and Creole fare is accompanied by thumping pop music, with a busy dance floor. Note: there’s a strict ‘smart casual’ dress code.

Address: Jumeirah Emirates Towers

Phone: +971 (0)4 319 8088


The Glasshouse And Verre

British super-chef Gordon Ramsey makes his presence felt in Dubai with these two

outlets within the luxurious Hilton Dubai Creek Hotel. Trendy sophistication – and

accompanying high prices – make Verre the place to be seen while the less

stratospheric Glasshouse offers an interesting ‘booze buffet’ – drink as much

as you like as long as you keep on eating!

Address: Hilton Dubai Creek, Beniyas Road

Phone: +971 (0)4 227 1111 / +971 (0)4 212 7551

Internet: /



Learn to dance salsa before downing perfectly concocted mojitos and cubana

libres at this atmospheric Cuban inspired hideout where paella is the speciality.

Address: Dubai Marine Beach Resort, Jumeira

Phone: +971 (0)4 346 1111



Al Koufa

A long-standing favourite for visitors and locals. Here you can savour genuine Emirates’ cuisine in a place that rarely warms up much before midnight but then packs to the gills as the band gets cooking.

Address: Al Nasr Leisure Land

Phone: +971 (0)4 335 1511



Al Dawaar

Dubai’s popular revolving restaurant atop the usually packed Hyatt Regency Hotel

offers ever-changing views to set the mood and ever-changing buffet spreads to

provide a perfect introduction to the delights of the middle-eastern table. The

huge selection also offers Indian and European dishes and a selection of


Address: Hyatt Regency Hotel, Deira

Phone: +971 (0)4 209 1234



Lan Kwai Fung

Authentic Hong Kong Chinese, right down to the décor. Wide choice and you can

watch the chefs at work behind the kitchen’s glass wall. They’ll even cook your

own suggestions to order.

Address: Nr Lamcy Plaza, Oud Metha

Phone: +971 (0)4 335 3680


Bateaux Dubai

This well-appointed modern vessel takes 350 passengers a time on a dinner cruise

up the Dubai Creek and back, with an emphasis on Greek cuisine but lots more


Address: Landing stage close to British Embassy on Al Seef


Phone: +971 (0)4 399 4994



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