Dubai is one of the Middle East’s most cosmopolitan hubs, so naturally, you’ll find the best of the region’s cuisine on the menu. The variety of Middle Eastern food on offer here is as eclectic as the food-loving city itself, from Michelin-starred fine dining to no-frills, hole-in-the-walls. Whether you want freshly baked gooey cheese fatayer or a hearty plate of steaming machboos (a spiced chicken and rice dish), these are the best Middle Eastern restaurants in Dubai.
It might take a few covert strolls around the Jumeirah Emirates Towers foyer before you discover the discreet entrance to Ninive. Once you find your way—either by walking through French eatery La Cantine du Faubourg or up the Brutalist concrete steps from the park below—this enchanting space will have you catching your breath. Among the most beautiful restaurants in Dubai, the outdoor, Bedouin-inspired majlis is an expert mix of elegance and coziness, with low seating and stunning layered tapestry embracing ancient Arabic and Berber detailing, draped with tan canvas coverings. Warm golden lanterns light up this rooftop space, which, with its cozy corners and foliage-filled walkways, feels like something of a secret garden. The menu is a delight—Chef Gilles Bosquet has revived sometimes-forgotten tastes of the region with Iraqi, Egyptian, Turkish, and Saudi dishes sitting upfront with more traditional Middle Eastern specialties: from dainty Turkish beef manti ravioli to slow-cooked lamb shoulder bursting with tangy Iraqi spices.
Ibn Al Bahar
This fishermen-owned seafood restaurant, located on the coastal dining strip of Club Vista Mare, draws a nightly crowd—no small feat in the fast-paced world of Palm Jumeirah, where there’s always a new must-try dinner spot. Ibn is particularly popular with Arab expats who tend to come and enjoy dinner with a glass of arak, a distilled Levantine, anise-flavored spirit. The menu zones in on fresh catches of the day—think butterfly-grilled sea bream marinated in Ibn’s house spice mix and jumbo garlic prawns served with a selection of Arabic mezze. With seaside surroundings and strings of fairy lights overhead, a meal on Ibn’s terrace has a distinct holiday dining feel, for both residents and visitors alike. On a cool evening, there’s no better place for an authentic family feast.
Chef Mohamad Orfali
Taking the number one spot on the 2023 list of MENA’s 50 Best Restaurants, Orfali Bros has become a beacon for modern Middle Eastern cuisine. Syrian chef Mohammad Orfali—and his brothers Wassim and Omar—are now almost as well known as their food in Dubai, thanks to their unique charisma and gastronomical storytelling. Interiors at this neighborhood bistro are airy and bright with a two-story kitchen
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The city of Dubai has reinforced its position as a major global tourism with its impressive H1 visitor results recently announced from Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) and Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
The results follow a year-long search for the world’s leading culinary brands. Votes were cast by culinary industry professionals and the general public, with the nominee gaining the most votes in a category named as the winner.
Dubai’s culinary scene has grown at breakneck speed over the past few years, with those living in the city barely able to keep up. Proving its chops on a global scale has taken a little longer, but the emirate is finally starting to have its moment in the spotlight, with the Michelin Guide launching in the city in 2022 and two Dubai venues appearing on 2023’s list of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants.
One of the most delightful holiday traditions is counting down the days to Christmas with an advent calendar, especially with one filled with chocolate. The tradition of advent calendars dates back to 19th-century Germany, where people marked the days leading up to Christmas with daily small treats. The first printed advent calendar appeared around 1903, with religious images behind small numbered doors. Over time, the concept evolved to include a variety of themes, from chocolates to toys and was adopted outside of Germany too. Here are ten of the finest luxury chocolate advent calendars, created by the world’s top chocolatiers.
Cairo is on most history buffs’s bucket lists, and with the Grand Egyptian Museum scheduled to open this year, there has never been a better time to start planning that long-awaited trip to the sprawling metropolis that more than 20 million people call home. But Egypt’s capital has so much more to offer than the obvious historic sites. The city reveals itself in layers and it is up to visitors to peel them back. Here are our picks of the best things to do in Cairo.
What do you think when you hear the word ‘Spain’? For many, the answer is the sunshine, the architecture, the tapas—and, of course, the wine. Oh the wine! And while Spain produces some excellent dry whites and fantastic sparkling cava, what really stands out is the quality of its reds.
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