With the holy month of Ramadan on, we roped in Dubai-based food writer Samantha Wood to choose five places in the city where non-fasters can grab a bite during daylight hours.
"We’re lucky to live in a tolerant city that allows independent restaurants and cafes outside hotels to open for daytime dining over Ramadan in Dubai. This year we have a record 230+ outlets, excluding food court joints in the malls, which are also open. Please be mindful of our Muslim friends, and patient with waiting staff who may be fasting," says Samantha Wood, founder of FooDiva.net.
Here are her top five picks across different districts:
Jumeirah Lake Towers
Vietnamese Foodies: JLT boasts a wonderful female chef-owned Vietnamese restaurant. Think fresh, crunchy, punchy prawn and papaya salad. Plenty of fragrant pho bowls and rice paper rolls will also tickle your palate. A new Downtown Dubai location is also open.
Vietnamese Foodies in Cluster D. T; 04 5656088. Open daily 11:00 am – 10:30 pm and weekends until 11:00 pm.
Dubai Media City
Taqado Mexican Kitchen: expect healthy nourishing Mexican ‘fast’ food. For breakfast, try the huevos rancheros - and for lunch, the low carb option of pulled barbacoa beef with lime coriander rice. Two locations near the Dubai Eye HQ, with many more scattered around town.
Taqado Mexican Kitchen Building 7: open daily 8:00 am – midnight. Building 10: open weekdays 8:00 am – 10:00 pm. T; 04 2778697.
Baker & Spice: go here for breakfast and order Dubai’s best shakshouka. In addition to the original slow-cooked tomato recipe, the green kousa (marrow) version is also delicious – with ingredients mostly sourced locally. Aside from the Town Centre Jumeirah location, outlets are open in Dubai Marina, Souk Al Manzil, Souk Al Bahar, Gold & Diamond Park and Barsha South.
Baker & Spice at Town Centre. T; 04 2975797. Open daily 7:00 am – 11:00 pm.
BB Social Dining: this owner-operated townhouse of a restaurant hidden in DIFC feels like a cosy speakeasy. Boasting a Pan Asian menu with a nod to Middle Eastern ingredients, the bao buns (incidentally these are vegan), freshly baked in-house every night are Dubai’s best.
BB Social Dining at DIFC, Gate Village 8. T; 04 4074444. Open daily Noon – midnight and until 1:00 am on weekends.
XVA Gallery: this gorgeous guest house also boasts a charming courtyard café serving simple Middle Eastern vegetarian fare, along with its trademark mint lemonade. XVA Gallery Cafe in Bastakiya. T; 04 3535383. Open daily 7:00 am – 9:00 pm.
If you want to see Samantha's full list, click here.