Emirates Woman puts new mediterranean restaurant BOCA to test. Is it the new trendsetting hub that everyone’s talking about…?


We hate to use this term but urban chic really is the best way to design BOCA. Think dark chairs, wooden tables a mix of stone and monochrome flooring and Art Deco-style titles. The design offers contemporary interiors with a nod to the Mediterranean with olive trees and decorative, vintage oil and vinegar bottles lining the open kitchen.

Written across one wall is the word ‘taste’ in various European languages including Italian, French, and Spanish as a reminder of the inspiration of the delicious flavours you are to experience.

The vibrant modern art covering some of the stone walls is by Soile Yli- Mayry and can be bought at


Enter the secret garden – well not so secret, but definitely worth seeing


This is definitely the new trendsetters’ hub full of the style conscious, gregarious friends and businessmen alike. It’s a great mix of communities, resulting in a comfortable and positive vibe. Upbeat and often retro, soulful house music fills the air, which is also heavy with cigarette smoke. If you don’t like being surrounded by copious amounts of tobacco smoke avoid sitting the otherwise pleasant garden area and opt for a seat indoors.


Sharing and caring


Sharing is caring and there is no better way to share than over tapas. The staff advice to ‘simply just pick a selection of dishes’ was simple enough. However, we would further recommend asking for your cold and hot dishes to be staggered in order to afford being overloaded with options, allowing dishes to get too cold, and thus lose some of the impact.

There are several standout dishes but for us the octopus (in the grilled octopus and air dried beef dish) was cooked to perfection. Crispy, not chewy, and with a delcious smoky aftertaste. While patatas bravas (called Boca potato chips) seems like an obvious tapas choice, it’s a must order here. Served as chunky chips covered in a sublime spicy sauce, we easily could’ve eaten more than one plate of this.

It’s no surprise the 12-hour braised lamb is signature dish. Its rich flavour and soft texture makes it melt in your mouth.

For dessert, there’s no contest really. Order the Ashanti chocolate option made with (80 per cent chocolate). Top tip: ditch the lemon grass and opt for vanilla ice cream instead. For the health concious, the granita is a perfectly refreshing and light alternative.

The Dorado Fish Tartare is another signature

The Dorado Fish Tartare is another signature

Why Bother

If you want to see and be seen by the cool gang, then this is the place to be.

Go For

A great night out with friends. Nothing beats great drinks and great food in a fabulous new setting.


BOCA, DIFC, Gate Village 6