In a world of gastronomy and 12-course menus, we give you the low down on the best luxe low-key restaurants.
The Where: The earthy spot is located at Al Thanya Street in Umm Suqeim, covered in lush planting and trees with an unassuming organic aesthetic.
The Why: Named after the Latin word for Earth “Terra” and designed with minimalist yet rustic décor, the eatery is a welcome addition to the hub of eateries in Umm Suqeim. Terra’s priority is sustainability, using only locally grown produce, eluding a farm-to-table ethos. The menu features a Mediterranean influence of flavours and wood-fired pizzas to savour the palate. Timing is key to avoiding crowds.
The Hero Dish: Terra features an extensive international menu of fresh cuisine. The Short Rib Pappardelle is the standout. Slow-cooked, shredded short beef ribs gently mixed with pappardelle ribbons and a decadent chocolate salted caramel tart for dessert is a welcome palate cleanser. Vegan and vegetarian options are also served on the menu with seasonal local ingredients.
The Where: Neatly tucked away in The Onyx Tower 2, The Greens, it would be easy to pass by this gem. Launched in 2021 by Ramen Chef Neha Mishra, Kinoya has established itself as the go-to restaurant for authentic Japanese cuisine with a bustling atmosphere earning itself a place in the Michelin guide.
The Why: Expect an informal Japanese dining experience with a warm Asian-themed décor. The 77-seat venue is split into three sections, each offering a different intimate experience. The eatery also caters to group bookings with private dining rooms. Whether you’re meeting friends at the ramen counter or taking a date for a seat at the chef’s table for Izakaya, there is something for every crowd, all-encompassing the perfect low-key spot for the best bowl of ramen in town.
The Hero Dish: Ramen is the signature dish on the menu at Kinoya, boasting five different options. Each is individually made with delicious ingredients, noodles, and rich chicken broths, bringing the heart of Japan to your table. Japanese classics such as sushi, sashimi, tempura, and an indulgent katsu sando are also available to satisfy famishing appetites.
The Where: Located on the 70th floor of the SLS Dubai Hotel & Residences in Downtown Dubai. Fi’lia offers style and substance with a female-focused ethos.
The Why: Featuring incredible views of the Dubai skyline and accompanied by traditional Italian cuisine. The first of its kind, Fi’lia (meaning daughter) restaurant is run by an entirely female team inspired by recipes that were passed down from generations of women specializing in Italian-Mediterranean dishes.
The Hero Dish: Italian flare meets Mediterranean influence at Fi’lia. With a focus on sustainability, sourcing local produce where possible, and utilizing every ingredient in the kitchen to achieve zero waste. Signature dishes include Jerusalem artichoke pizza, pappardelle with veal osso buco, and a must-try seabass with feta crust.
The Where: Alfresco meets European boulevard dining at Lana Lusa. Located at Wasl 51 on the bustling Wasl Road, Jumeriah. You can’t miss the eatery covered in bright yellow parasols, wicker furniture, and oversized terracotta pots transporting you to a slice of Portuguese nostalgia.
The Why: Inviting you to leave the stress of the city behind. Lana Lusa serves up authentic Portuguese cuisine set against a backdrop of intimate interiors. Stop for a quick coffee and pastéis de nata on the terrace watching the world go by or a sundrenched dinner with friends over sharing plates and great conversation, all reminiscent of the Bairro Alto in Lisbon.
The Hero Dish: Inspired by Portuguese roots, the menu is full of modern dishes and hearty flavours. Equally as famous for breakfast as it is for dinner. Stand-out dishes include the salted codfish with seabass and avocado and the marinated octopus perfectly complimented with the signature Lusa Spritz mocktail. Quite possibly the best Portuguese food you will try in Dubai.
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