And they are real showstoppers
Everyone has their favourite dish at their favourite restaurant. Whether it’s that burger you bore your dining companion by ordering every week, or the pasta you simply can’t seem to recreate right at home. And as much as you try to branch out and try something new, that thought of your old fave is always there. We’ve asked top restaurants around the city what you’re really ordering – so next time you go out why not try one of these tried-and-trusted dishes. Food envy? Say farewell to FOMO – this is what everyone else in Dubai is ordering.
AB tuna pizza at Akira Back
This restaurant from Las Vegas chef and former pro snowboarder Akira Back is famed for its stunning dishes, and few more so than the tuna pizza. Be gone, thoughts of tinned tuna and gloopy cheese – this is the chicest pizza you’ll find. The delicate slivers of raw tuna sit atop a crisp cracker and are elevated with white truffle oil and truffle shavings.
Number ordered: 510 per month.
W Dubai – The Palm, Palm Jumeirah, akirabackdubai.com (04 245 5800).
Akiba rock shrimps at Akiba Dori
You’ll have almost certainly ordered the Tokyopolitan-style pizzas at this ever growing home-grown Japanese restaurant. And while you’re there you’ll most likely have got a portion of rock shrimp too (or so say our stats). A classic dish – these crispy prawns are tossed in a zingy sauce and best shared as a starter.
Number ordered: 400 per month.
Ras Al Khor Road (04 770 7949).
Aussie benedict at Tom&Serg
A morning classic with a twist – this is a signature of the Melbourne café, and it’s a hit.
A breakfast of champions, the signature dish comes served with braised wagyu beef shoulder, poached organic eggs, gribiche hollandaise and smoked onion relish. It’s so delicious Tom&Serg cooked up 792 portions in September. That’s a lot of runny yolks.
Number served: 792 a month.
Al Quoz (056 474 6812).
Avo toast at Bounty Beets
There are people out there that say avocado on toast is not something to order out, seeing as you can make it yourself at home. However, we challenge you to make something as tasty and pretty as this in your own kithen. Smashed avocado, grilled asparagus, garlic mushroom, rocket is drizzled with balsamic reduction and sprinkled with dukkah is served on toast to around 265 diners each month at this oh-so-Instagrammable spot.
Number ordered: 265 per month.
Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, Al Sufouh (04 511 7373).
Beef wellington at Hell’s Kitchen
Gordon Ramsay is known for many things. TV shows, vibrant language and beef wellington are just three. And the beef wellington at his Dubai outpost of Hell’s Kitchen is an absolutely cracking dish that is pretty much a must-order for carnivores. Enveloped in crispy pastry, with perfectly pink beef nestled inside and served with a dollop of creamy mashed potatoes, you can’t get more comforting than this retro-classic and Ramsay signature.
Number ordered: 700 per month.
Caesars Palace Bluewaters Dubai, Bluewaters Dubai (04 556 6466).
Boojie Burger at Good Burger
You don’t just want a burger, you want a good burger (see what they did there?) and it seems that the Boojie Burger is the best of the bunch – selling more than 70 a day. This 160-gram patty is slathered in truffle mayo, cheese, caramelised onion and topped with crispy onion for a proper treat. Double onion and lashings of truffle for good measure?
This is one posh burger that Dubai can’t get enough of (especially when we order it in to eat in our PJs).
Number ordered: 70 a day.
California Maki roll at The Penthouse
The views are the main draw at this stunning rooftop bar at popular party hotel FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai, but sit tight when it comes to food, as you’ll want to hang around for a snack while you’re here too. The fave among the party crowd is a portion of the California maki – tasty, simple and ideal nibbling food for a night out.
Number ordered: 420 a month.
FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai (052 900 4868).
Carrot cake at The Lime Tree Cafe & Kitchen
Going for the title of the most famous cake in the city, Lime Tree’s carrot cake is a dessert of dreams. Freshly baked fluffy carrot cake is topped with creamy frosting. And it’s so good those with a sweet tooth are gobbling it rapidly – as Lime Tree has sold more 20,000 slices of carrot cake so far this year, using more than three tonnes of carrots in its bakery this year. We’ll be seeing in the dark at this rate.
Number ordered: 20,000 in 2021. (So far.)
Various locations including Al Manara, thelimetreecafe.com.
Don Dom pizza at Motorino
This New York-style pizza joint serves up seriously good pies, fresh from the oven. The dough has a two-day rising to produce a bubbly, yet crispy, crust. This one is topped with fresh buffalo mozzarella imported from Italy, while the blistering is thanks to the precise positioning of the pizza in the bespoke brick oven. The famous (and Time Out Dubai fave) Soppressata pizza comes in second with 587 pizzas sold per month. Mamma mia.
Number ordered: 617 per month.
JA Ocean View Hotel, The Walk, JBR, motorinodubai.com (056 216 5027).
Dragon maki roll at 3Fils
This has been a mainstay on the list of most-ordered dishes since opening. The crunchy shrimp tempura is incased in signature sushi rice and topped with gochujang sauce and pickled onions. Temperatures, textures and flavours collide for a proper mouthful here.
Number ordered: 3,000 a month.
Dhs42. Jumeirah Fishing Harbour, 3fils.com (056 273 0030).
Escargots de Bourgogne at LPM Restaurant & Bar
You heard it right – snails have made it onto this list. And if you’re French food connoisseur you’ll have had your share of this dreamy dish at Time Out Dubai’s Best French Restaurant 2021. The Escargots De Bourgogne comprises snails roasted in garlic butter and parsley and is a classic that you must try (and it sounds like you already are).
Number ordered: 2,183 orders per month.
Gate Village 8, DIFC, lpmlondon.co.uk/dubai (04 439 0505).
Filetto di manzo at Cinque
Fancy something, well, fancy? Cinque at FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai might not be a steakhouse, but its Australian wagyu beef tenderloin is the best-seller at this Italian. The grade 4-5 steak is served with spinach purée, foie gras mousse and mixed pickled vegetables, for when you’re after something classic and delicious and not in the mood
Number ordered: 220 per month.
FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai (04 455 9989).
Fish and chips at The Irish Village
A classic dish, this is a whopper of a best-seller at one of the best-loved pubs in the city. Beautiful white cod fillet coated in a crispy, crunchy hops batter, served up with mountains of home-made chips, tartar sauce and mushy pies. What’s not to love?
Number ordered: More than 200,000 portions sold in ten years.
Garhoud, theirishvillage.com (04 282 4750).
French beef dip Sandwich at Cassette
Essentially a posh sandwich and gravy, but we’re down with that. The classic French dip sandwich at this trendy café in Al Quoz is made with tender thin sliced of beef layered on a toasted baguette with cheddar cheese and homemade pickled jalapeño topped with beef au jus. No, you have gravy on your chin….
Number ordered: more than 500 a month.
The Courtyard, Al Quoz (04 349 1966).
Gang Kiew Wan Gai at Tong Thai
A former winner of our Best Thai Restaurant, this spot at the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai knows how to keep things straightforward. And that’s why more than 250 classic Thai chicken green curries are rusted up by chefs every month. Spicy.
Number ordered: More than 250 a month
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, Business Bay (04 414 6418).
Half duck at Maiden Shanghai
This Chinese restaurant on the Palm is best-known for its banging party brunches, but if you’re looking for a dinner date – make like the masses and order a half portion of duck. A
Number ordered: 400 a month.
FIVE Palm Jumeirah Dubai (04 455 9989).
High Jamz at High Joint
Small in size but mighty in burgers, this cute burger joint serves up dishes that pack a punch. The team aims to showcase dishes that are big on umami and intense in flavours, so decided to check out the global food trend of bacon jam. And after much experimenting they’ve come up with the ideal formula – the onion and bacon is cooked for three hours until it caramelised, with an intensified smokiness and sweetness. This jam is slathered on a premium freshy minced angus beef patty (antibiotic and hormone free), topped with American cheese, ranch sauce and crispy fried shallots. (They recommend double patty. So do we.)
Number ordered: 5,200 per month.
Al Manara (04 268 1586).
Honey-glazed wagyu short ribs at La Cantine du Faubourg
Dishes come and go, but this is one that remains permanently at the top of our to-order list, and it seems we’re not the only ones suckered in by these glorious honey-glaze wagyu short ribs. Crispy and crunchy on the outside, and ridiculously tender inside – the textures and flavours of this dish will have you making repeat visits.
Number ordered: 150 a week.
Jumeirah Emirates Towers, Sheikh Zayed Road, lacantine.ae (04 352 7105).
Kampachi sashimi no salada at ROKA
Zuma’s little sister, ROKA is known best for its robata dishes. But here in Dubai it’s a raw fish plate that steals the shows, with more than 1,000 orders a month. The kampachi sashimi no salada comprises Japanese yellowtail sashimi with yuzu-truffle dressing for a zingy, rich, powerful flavour combination.
Number ordered: 1,000 orders per month.
The Opus by Omniyat, Business Bay, rokarestaurant.com (04 439 7171).
Korean chicken waco at BLK Cab Coffee
No, not the place in Texas – a hybrid of a waffle and a taco, and a mighty tasty one at that. The bubble waffle taco is loaded with Korean chicken, shredded carrots and spring onions. And 300 of you go for this super combo a month. (Unless just one of you really likes wacos).
Various locations including JBR, blkcabcoffee.com
La Burrata at DRIFT
You’re unlikely to find many menus without a burrata on show, but this one at DRIFT Beach makes for perfect seaside snacking. The fancy beach club serves up a suitably stylish creamy cheese dish, with tomato tartare, pine seed crumbs and a basil pesto crostino for a light bite in your swimmers.
Number ordered: 521 per month.
One&Only Royal Mirage, Al Sufouh (04 455 9989).
Miso black cod at Nobu
Unless you’ve been living under a rock – or really dislike fish – you’ll have heard of this world-famous dish. From the renowned chef, this is a much-loved dish all around the globe, and it’s just as well-received here in Dubai. More than 500 plates are ordered every month. The original black cod, butter soft, sweet and rich, that knocks it out of the park every time.
Number ordered: 553 per month.
Dhs239. Atlantis The Palm, Palm Jumeirah, noburestaurants.com/dubai (04 426 2626).
Pho rolls at Indochine
A star on DIFC’s dining scene, our best Asian Restaurant 2021 has loads of exciting dishes to tuck into, but the one that’s gathering the most traction with Dubai diners is the pho rolls. Based on the northern Vietnamese dish pho cuon, where fresh sheets of rice noodle are stuffed with sautéed beef, Thai basil and sriracha, then rolled and steamed. Dunk them in the Vietnamese dipping sauce nuoc cham to really spice the whole thing up.
Number ordered: 200 a month.
Gate Precinct Building 3, DIFC, indochinedxb.com (04 208 9333).
Pik gai chicken wings at Café Isan
It might be the spicy Isan-style curries or super pad Thai you crave when you order from Time Out Dubai’s Best Thai Restaurant 2021, but you’re missing a trick if you’re not getting a starter (or side) or pik gai chicken wings too. More than 1,700 of these beauties flap their way to homes around Dubai on delivery every month, thanks to their spicy marinade made from chef New’s special Thai herb mix.
Number ordered: 1,700 per month.
Cluster B, JLT, cafeisan.co (04 557 9778).
Poblano patacones at Amazónico
Patacones are an absolute favourite at Time Out Dubai’s Best Latin American Restaurant 2021. The Paoblano patacones are double-fried, green plantains patties topped with, wait for it… burrata, corn and kimchi. Odd? Yes. Peak Dubai? Yes. The creamy texture of the burrata is lifted by the sweetness of the corn emulsion and spicy kick from the kimchi. One bite of these little Columbian snacks have DIFC diners ordering more and more – around 1,999 a month more to be precise.
Number ordered: 2,000 a month.
DIFC Pavilion, DIFC, amazonicorestaurant.com/dubai (04 571 3999).
Polpo croccate, patate e fagiolini Verdi at The Artisan
We can’t get enough of octopus, and at The Artisan, you can’t either. This dish is a signature, with good reason. The five-hour slow-cooked octopus comes with lemon flavoured potato cream green beans, Taggiasca olive sauce, purple potato confit and garlic panko. Sourced from an eco-responsible Spanish fisher, it’s cooked in two ways. It’s slow-cooked to keep it tender ,before being grilled on the plancha for a crispy outside. Delightful, and a taste of Italy.
Number ordered: 250 per month.
Waldorf Astoria DIFC (04 338 8133).
Pulled duck lettuce cups at Koko Bay
Better known as a bar, this seaside spot comes into its own in winter weather. With stunning views, there’s a holiday vibe, and the food is Asian-themed (as is the décor). The best-seller here is the hoisin duck wrapped in baby lettuce cups, served with fried onions, garlic and peanuts for a light bite at the beach.
Number ordered: 980 per month.
Palm West Beach, Palm Jumeirah (04 572 3444).
Short rib donuts at Seafire Steakhouse
If you’re a follower of Time Out you’ll have heard us chat about these beauties many a time. And it seems we’re not alone in our love for them. Before you start questioning the sweet-savoury doughnut idea, we’ll just say that these are far from a sugar-laden snack. An all-out savoury dish, the doughnuts are stuffed with braised short-rob and covered with Parmesan charcoal dust, with lashings of barbecue sauce.
Number ordered: 4,356 each year.
Atlantis The Palm, Palm Jumeirah (04 426 2626).
Supreme dim sum platter at Hakkasan
Who doesn’t love dim sum? This is one of the biggest figures on this list – with 19,160 portions ordered a year. That’s a lot of dumpling. A selection of Kaffir lime lobster har gau, abalone and chicken shui mai with caviar, Smoked freshwater eel and taro, sea urchin scallion dumpling make up this premium dim sum platter
Number ordered: 19,160 each year
Atlantis The Palm, Palm Jumeirah (04 426 2626).
USDA prime fillet at Prime68
Time Out Dubai’s Best Steak House 2021 is known for many things (top views, stellar service, a chic brunch…) but none more so than its steaks. With absolutely top-notch cuts, super-tender and quality meats on offer it’s no surprise that the crème de la crème of beef cuts is the most-ordered dish at this sky-high steakhouse. The USDA prime fillet is a cut above – literally.
Number ordered: More than 300 a month.
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, Business Bay, jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com (04 414 3000).
Roast beef at The Duck Hook
There are few things more satisfying than a slap-up roast dinner, and you won’t find a bigger one in town than at The Duck Hook. Loved by families, friends and couples alike, this golf club pub is packed out every weekend with hungry diners looking for a proper roast dinner. This one comes with sliced Australian prime rib of beef with roast potatoes, honey roasted parsnips, buttered carrots, braised red cabbage, horseradish sauce and slathered in house gravy. Did we mention there’s a whopper of a Yorkshire pudding, too.
Number ordered: 624 per month.
Dubai Hills Golf Club, Dubai Hills (800 666 353).
Roasted peking duck at Hutong
One of the most famous dishes around, Peking duck is a classic. And Time Out Dubai’s Best Chinese Restaurant 2021 takes its duck seriously. Hutong is well known internationally for its Peking duck based on a century-old Imperial recipe. It’s served with steamed pancakes, spring onions and three types of sauce – traditional hoisin sauce, black pepper or the bougie truffle sauce.
Number ordered: 500 per month.
Gate Building 6, DIFC, hutong-dubai.com (04 220 0868)
Sea bass cazuela COYA Dubai
An iron pot of tastiness, this treat from the top Latin American restaurant is a big hitter with seafood-lovers in Dubai. Every week 224 of the sea bass cazuela is ordered à la carte – so that’s not including the orders on business lunch or brunch, either. Tasty.
Number ordered: 224 per week.
Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, coyarestaurant.com/dubai (04 316 9600).
Steak tartare at Marina Social
Coming from top British chef Jason Atherton, this classic dish gets the city’s votes when it comes to starters at this popular British venue (and Time Out Dubai’s Best European Restaurant 2021). Rich chopped steak comes with beef-fat toast, confit egg yolk and a dash of horse radish aioli to really lift it.
Number ordered: 99 per week.
InterContinental Dubai Marina, marinasocialdubai.com (04 446 6664).
Wagyu gyozas at Mimi Kakushi
This is a Time Out favourite – and made it onto our best dishes of the year (so far) list earlier in 2021. These wagyu and foie gras gyozas at trendy 1920s-style restaurant Mimi Kakushi are utterly indulgent, sitting atop rich truffle soy butter.
Number ordered: 962 per month.
Dhs70. Four Seasons Dubai Resort at Jumeirah Beach, Jumeirah Beach Road (04 379 4811).
Wagyu sando at Reif Japanese Kushiyaki
One of the most popular spots in the city. Chef Reif Othman is well known for these incredibly moreish wagyu sandos. The tender beef is coated in charcoal breadcrumbs, fried to medium rare and served with a slice of slightly grilled wagyu sirloin. It’s then enveloped in crispy toasted milk bread, with a slick of Japanese mustard mayo and tonkatsu sauce.
Number ordered: 2,848 per month.
Dar Wasl Mall and Time Out Market Dubai, reifkushiyaki.com (04 345 0761).