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Five Casually Chic Dubai Restaurants To Visit For Lunch This Weekend

Photo: Courtesy Fish


A Mediterranean dream, this Santorini-inspired restaurant feels like a blissful slice of the photogenic Greek islands, nestled within Dubai’s Le Méridien Mina Seyahi resort. The vivid blue door and bright white pathway lead guests to a chic indoors-outdoors dining space which flows directly onto the pure sands of the  hotel’s private beach. Being one of Dubai’s more Instagrammable dining spots, guests can choose from the stylish table seating, or lounge with your spritz on the picture-perfect restaurant’s cushioned lounges and swing seating. Ideal for al fresco dining and Dubai’s current high-20s weather forecast, Fish has a hard-won reputation for delivering a combination of on point dishes and relaxing ambience, making you want to linger longer with friends. The seafood-led menu focuses on fresh and sustainable produce, with the catch of the day cooked to your liking. Fresh whole fish, squid, mussels, and more are on display, or browse the suitable-for-sharing menu, which offers plenty of mezze favorites with the extensive sharing menu including delightful Aegean dips, ceviches, hot feta with honey, Turkish salads, and a refreshing tzatziki which pairs perfectly with both the warm toasted pita sides and the fluffy house bread. The grilled octopus main is a highlight – beautifully cooked and tender – while the generous sea bass fillet is flavorful and matched with herbed new potatoes. Meat-eaters are also catered to, with a seared ribeye sliced for sharing. Finish up with another spritz, and enough Greek and Turkish desserts to satisfy even the sweetest tooth.


Photo: Courtesy Apricot


Named for the juicy fruit, this homegrown casual dining concept pays tribute to fresh produce and Mediterranean flavors. Located in Downtown Dubai, nestled next to the Manzil hotel, Apricot boasts a laid-back, boho vibe, with plenty of natural light, chic furnishings, and family-friendly seating. Take your time over a lazy weekend breakfast, with brunch menu items available into the afternoon. Share the Bodrum breakfast, a spread of Turkish favorites including eggs, breads, kaymak with honey, and Turkish tea, and satisfy a sweet tooth with the signature Apricot French toast with brioche smothered in an apricot topping, salted caramel sauce, and vanilla crème. Lunch options include a moreish watermelon, feta and mint salad, traditional meat manti with yogurt, and a selection of gourmet sandwiches and wraps. Or pop in for a coffee paired with a hefty wedge of chocolatey ‘Matilda cake’ or their baklava-inspired pistachio cream dessert.

Photo: Courtesy Café Bateel

Café Bateel

Catch the last weeks of Café Bateel’s popular summer menu, dreamed up by Chef Nicholas Cuadrado for the Dubai-wide eatery. The curated menu features different dishes taken from the chef’s personal travel experiences throughout Greece, Italy, Spain, and France, best lingered over in Café Bateel’s airy seating spaces.  Some of the new additions to the menu include a green shakshuka that was inspired by the Levantine classic and named for its tangy salsa verde, for a healthy and delicious breakfast dish. The red snapper primavera, a flavorful risotto dish served Mediterranean-style, is our pick for a light yet satisfying main. To finish, indulge in a remastered presentation of Café Bateel’s date trilogy dessert, a one-of-a-kind tasting experience featuring three organic puddings, served with vanilla, cardamom, and coffee sauces, plus fior di latte gelato. If you are looking for a tantalizing new experience, the exotic royal saffron mocha with coffee tiered with chocolate and saffron, and drizzled Bateel organic date syrup is worth a try.  Don’t leave without a handful of their sweet dates, sourced from Café Bateel’s very own oasis in Saudi Arabia.

Photo: Courtesy Hoe Lee Kow

Hoe Lee Kow

Chef Reif’s creation in Dubai Hills Investment Park, the cheekily named Hoe Lee Kow delves into the intricacies of Korean cuisine. Offering up some of the region’s best-known dishes – plus some curve balls – the focus is on intense flavors and a modern take on the traditional recipes, promising an unconventional take on Korean BBQ. Start with Korean jeonche which is similar to mezze style appetizers including tteokbokki, a moreish type of fried pasta, (RFC) Reif fried chicken, and mandu dumplings. The noodle offerings span from kimchi udon to flavorful ramyun, with lots of veggie options. Follow up with the signature ilplum BBQ, choosing from salmon, wagyu, duck, and more, before finishing with a refreshing bingsu, the famous sweetened shaved ice dessert. The newly launched Hanjeomsim business lunch is a great idea for a guided taste of Korea, with the offer serving up assorted banchan side dishes and a choice of mains.

Photo: Courtesy SushiArt


Celebrating 10 years in the United Arab Emirates, the Japanese restaurant has been a staple of straightforwardly chic meals since its inception. While its fresh Asian menu has saved many office lunches, the streamlined and warmly lit Japanese restaurants in Dubai and Abu Dhabi are a welcome option. Cool down with a selection of summer rolls, with the vegetarian option and refreshing combination of beetroot, avocado, coriander, and mint. Get your chopsticks into SushiArt’s fusion offerings, including marinated tartare, salmon and seabream ceviche, and colorful poke bowls. Just like the name, sushi is sliced and served with artistic flair, with the nigiri, sashimi, and rolls options wrapping high quality seafood and vegetables with just-right sushi rice and nori sheets. Can’t choose just one roll? The sharing boxes are a tasty addition to your weekday, with exciting combinations and Japanese classics.

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