When it comes to fine dining that boldly ventures into the experimental realm, Dubai is having a moment. Helmed by some of the world’s most talented chefs, several of the city’s restaurants have received recognition for their contribution to Dubai’s diverse — and frankly, fantastic — culinary scene. If you have a taste for the finer things in life, don’t miss these six hotel restaurants on your trip.
An underwater feast for all senses
Stepping into Ossiano, set in the basement of Atlantis, The Palm, feels like entering a mythical world far removed from everyday reality. Stingrays and sharks swim past in the aquarium’s floor-to-ceiling windows, opulent crystal chandeliers hang from the ceiling and bold seashell pillars stand around the dining area, inviting you to imagine you’ve arrived in an upscale corner of the lost underwater city.
Acclaimed chef Grégoire Berger’s 10-course tasting menu draws inspiration from cuisines around the world. Using sustainably sourced ingredients, the food promises to take you on an underwater journey through storytelling. Expect to feast on delicacies such as Brittany brown crab, burnt leek with clams, and langoustine with sea pesto and potato. Considering how luxurious and theatrical this experience feels, Ossiano provides the perfect place to celebrate a special occasion.
Creative Portuguese seafood
To sample a creative, contemporary take on classic Portuguese cuisine, make your way to Tasca by respected chef José Avillez at Mandarin Oriental Jumeira, Dubai. Enjoy Tasca’s beautiful setting on the sixth floor of the beachfront luxury hotel, whether you choose to dine in the trendy interior or on the terrace by the infinity pool and its fantastic view of the Arabian Sea and Dubai skyline.
Named after the Portuguese word for tavern, Tasca feels both stylish and laidback. The restaurant’s Infinity Bar is a great spot to begin with cocktails like the fruity Tasca Martini before your meal.
Then move over to Tasca for a wide variety of shareable plates that include seafood, meat and vegetarian options. For traditional flavors, order the octopus with spinach and potatoes, piri piri chicken or codfish, or try signature dishes such as the Algarve seafood cataplana (a stew) or Atlantic blue lobster. Make sure to save room for desserts such as the strawberry-flavored rose pavlova and classic custard-filled pastel de nata (egg tart).
Innovative Indian cuisine
Ever since it opened its doors in 2018, Trèsind Studio at voco Dubai has been cementing its reputation as Dubai’s best restaurant for innovative Indian cuisine with gifted chef Himanshu Saini at the helm.
The degustation menu (or its vegetarian version) is the only option here and features dishes prepared with local and sustainably sourced ingredients. The menu represents the vibrant diversity of Indian cuisine and allows you to sample the many flavor profiles of regional cuisines that are hard to find in Dubai in a high-end setting.
Bring your appetite and expect to tuck into dishes like ghee-roasted crab rich with the aromas of curry leaf and cinnamon, Goan-inspired duck cafreal, and succulent kofta kebabs with quince curry, all served in a theatrical style.
For creative cocktails dressed up with surprising infusions featuring fennel, pickled papaya and sandalwood cordial, stop by the restaurant’s Papadom Botanic Bar.
Elegant Italian dining
There are many reasons to visit Bulgari Resort and Residences Dubai on the seahorse-shaped Jumeirah Bay Island, but the elegant Il Ristorante — Niko Romito is an especially good one if you’re planning a romantic dinner date. Inside, elegant, understated interiors work together to create a sophisticated dining space whereas tables on the terrace guarantee brilliant marina views over the blue waters of the Arabian Sea. Begin with expertly crafted cocktails and lively conversation at the sleek cocktail bar before the main affair.
Drawing on the expertise of Abruzzo native chef Niko Romito and the leadership of Emilia-Romagna native chef Giacomo Amicucci, the menu features dishes like roasted langoustines, linguine with lobster and red prawns, and beef tenderloin with green peppercorn sauce. End on a sweet note with desserts like the tiramisu or the sponge cake with lemon custard cream.
French fine dining with drama
With décor that serves up drama and sophistication in equal doses — think lofty ceilings, captivating murals and black crystal chandeliers — STAY by Yannick Alléno at One&Only The Palm impresses. Given the many accolades won by chef Alléno over his illustrious career, it is hardly surprising that the French restaurant is one of Dubai’s top fine-dining establishments.
The menu lists dishes like zucchini with dates and camel cheese, pan-fried foie gras, French turbot with mustard, and slow-cooked tagine. For those keen to sample multiple dishes, opt for the four- and six-course set menus and add on the wine pairings.
Sublime views with French fare
On the 27th floor of the iconic sail-shaped Burj Al Arab, heralded Al Muntaha serves fine French cuisine with Italian influences. Renowned chef Saverio Sbaragli shows off his creative genius with dishes such as langoustine with cocoa beans and caramelized onion broth, St. Jacques’ scallops with white truffle and roasted Bresse chicken.
The lunch set and the multi-course degustation menus provide excellent choices if you want to try a variety of the restaurant’s signature dishes. The optional wine pairing gives you an opportunity to sip quality wines sourced from French and Italian vineyards. The floor-to-ceiling windows offer breathtaking vistas of the Arabian Sea, so it’s worth making a reservation for lunch — just make sure to request a seat by the window.