Get your dose of sushi, sashimi or the famous black cod …
Dubai’s Japanese food scene is thriving. From takeaway sushi restaurants to upscale glamorous eateries, there are plenty of places to get your fix, whether you’re looking for a budget or a blast.
For a glamorous dinner, head to Aka. The restaurant, with its huge flowers of deep fuchsia floral arrangements, is ultra-Instagrammable. Here you will find theatrical sushi presentations and delicious entrees, but we recommend that you save room for the deliciously cooked Wagyu tenderloin (350 Dhs) which is served on a steaming charcoal platter with asparagus, as well as two mouthwatering dips in teriyaki and spicy beef. Find out what What’s up thought of Aka here.
Aka, La Pointe, Palm Jumeirah, every day from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. Phone: (0) 4 578 0555. @aka_dubai
This quirky restaurant and bar will make you feel like you’ve stepped straight into a Tokyo alley. With neon lights and cool design, you can try many tasty street food like Wasabi shrimp or Akira Rock shrimp. They also offer their take on Neapolitan pizza, Tokyo style, and this is one of the best pizzas we’ve had in Dubai.
Akiba Dori, Building 8, Dubai Design District, Saturday to Wednesday 12 noon to 12 noon, Thursday 12 noon to 1 am, Friday 12 noon to 11 pm. Phone: (04) 7707949. akibadori.com
Named after famous Michelin-starred chef Akira Back, this chic new restaurant lives in the equally chic W the Palm. The professional snowboarder turned professional chef has designed a menu that fuses Asian flavors with Korean and American influences, telling the personal story of Back’s adventure.
Akira Back, W Dubai The Palm, West Crescent Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, daily from 7 p.m. to 11:30 a.m. Phone: (04) 245 5555. marriott.com
Benihana was one of the first Teppanyaki experiences in the city and hosted one of the first and funniest Teppanyaki theater nights in Dubai. You can always expect the chefs to put on a show when you dine these days, and they’ll have your choice of seafood, tender meat, and fresh vegetables right in front of you. The legendary restaurant offers indoor and outdoor seating, although we choose a spot at Teppanyaki each time.
Benihana, Amwaj Rotana, The Walk JBR, Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday from 6 p.m. to 12 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 12 p.m. to 12 p.m., closed Mondays. Phone: (04) 428 3089. rotana.com
One of Dubai’s oldest Japanese restaurants, Bentoya is known for its excellent sushi in a no-frills setting. Here you’ll find authentic Japanese dishes and a selection of unique grilling options, including amberjack, scallops and pickled mackerel.
Bentoya, Sheikh Zayed Rd, daily 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. facebook.com/bentoyasheikhzayed
Foodies familiar with the DIFC scene will be aware of the new ninth-floor restaurant called Clap Dubai. In case you missed it, the Japanese restaurant, originally from Beirut, is the latest outdoor nightlife spot on everyone’s lips. As a highlight of the DIFC, the windowless space overlooks the sparkling downtown Dubai, but if you prefer somewhere more indoors, the views are equally delightful. Find out what What’s up thought about Clap DIFC here.
Clap Dubai, Gate Village 11, DIFC, daily from 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. Phone: (0) 4 569 3820. claprestaurant.com
This old-fashioned izakaya, located in the Millennium Airport Hotel, is something of a hidden gem. It was founded by a former sumo wrestler and offers classic izakaya bites that pair perfectly with a beer. Think: yakitori skewers, chicken wings, and fried karaage chicken.
Fujiya, Millennium Airport Hotel, daily from noon to 2 a.m.@ fujiya_dubai /
When the decor, menu and design are on song, great restaurants have the capacity to transport you. And so it is with Hanami, an alluring Japanese restaurant on Palm Jumeirah that takes you through the back streets of Tokyo. It is located on the 15th floor of Andaz Dubai The Palm with stunning views.
Hanami, 15th Floor, Andaz Dubai The Palm, Palm Jumeirah, Monday to Saturday 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., Fri 12:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. instagram.com/hanamidxb/
Hoseki is a 9-seat restaurant (yes, really), on the fourth floor of the Bulgari Hotel, which sets it apart from its competition in a very unique way. There is also no menu – you will have dishes selected for you by Chef Masahiro Sugiyama in two hours omakase experience (which means “The choice is yours”). There are no tickets, so you will need to book in advance to guarantee your spot. It’s at the more expensive end of the spectrum, with a Dhs900 or Dhs1400 menu to choose from.
Hōseki, Bulgari Resort Dubai, Jumeira Bay, Dubai, lunch: 1 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday, dinner: 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday. Phone: (04) 777 5307. bulgarihotels.com
Hibachi is set in a really cool, family-friendly environment with big tables and an island-style Teppanyaki laid out with twelve locations around it so you can be close to the action when your dishes are being created right in front of your eyes.
Hibachi, Roda Al Bustan Hotel, Dubai, Monday to Friday 3pm to 11pm. Phone: (04) 282 0000. facebook.com/HibachiDubai
The staff’s’ irasshaimase ‘chorus as you enter Izakaya will ring the bells of anyone who has visited Tokyo: the laid-back and laid-back vibe makes this place great for girls’ nights or casual dining, but quirky touches. means it’s fun for families too.
Izakaya, JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, Dubai, 6 p.m. to 12 a.m. Monday to Saturday, closed Sunday. Phone: (04) 414 3000. jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com
Ikigai, located at Millennium Place Dubai Marina, has just opened, bringing the flavors of the Far East to Dubai. The casual restaurant and bar concept aims to merge high-quality Japanese street food for lunch and dinner, with a full cocktail menu for relaxed after-work vibes. On the menu, guests can expect a varied selection from grilled tiger prawns in Kombu butter to crispy tempura burgers. The mix-and-match sharing plates are designed to be ideal for celebrating and sharing.
Ikigai, Millennium Place Dubai Marina, daily from 12 p.m. to 1 a.m. Phone: (0) 4 550 8114. ikigaidubai.ae
Forgoing an overly sophisticated experience, Kinoya welcomes you to a relaxed neighborhood restaurant, perfect for an after-work catch-up dinner. There is a dedicated ramen counter, a chef’s table, two private dining rooms, and a restaurant. On the menu you will find Ramen bowls, chicken, meat, fish or Yakitori vegetables as well as Izakaya snacks such as sushi, tempura, kobachi and cute desserts.
Kinoya, The Onyx Tower 2, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, open daily from 12 p.m. to 1 a.m. Phone: (04) 548 6776. @ kinoya.ae
This famous Tokyo registry is located in Oberoi, Business Bay. The Fudo Nippon promotion takes place at Kimura-Ya from January 18 to 31, featuring special dishes such as A5 wagyu shabushabu (a homemade stew of thinly sliced beef), Fuji sushi set or steak premium wagyu sirloin.
Kimura-Ya, The Oberoi Dubai, Business Bay, daily noon to midnight. Phone : (04) 444 1455. @kimurayadubai
With its luxury location at the Dubai Opera, you can bet Kohantei is high on the sophistication ladder. The restaurant’s décor is simple yet elegant, leaving your palette in awe of the traditional multi-course “kaseiki” menu.
Kohantei, Dubai Opera, Dubai, daily from 12 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., from 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Phone: (04) 243 4951. Facebook.com/kohanteidubai
The new Mimi Kakushi restaurant transports you to 1920s Osaka, a glamorous homage to the avant-garde oriental era, with a sensual amalgamation of large round leather cabins, a large mahogany bar with a soundtrack cool jazz in the background. Share plates with signature dishes like sashimi, sushi, tempura, and gyoza. For main courses, try the beautifully tender Kagoshima Wagyu Beef. Find out what What’s up thought of Mimi Kakushi here.
Four Seasons Resort Restaurant Village. Every day from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. Phone: (0) 43794811. mimikakushi.ae
Expect culinary delights to be prepared, cooked and served right in front of you at the Miyako at Hyatta Regency Dubai. It is divided into three different culinary experiences; a live Teppanyaki room, an intimate Titami room and the main dining room, which also has a sushi bar.
Miyako, Hyatt Regency Dubai, Al Khaleej Rd, Dubai, daily 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m., 6 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. Phone: (04) 209 6914. facebook.com/MiyakoDubai
This contemporary restaurant at Mandarin Oriental Jumeira, Dubai has the world’s most fiery grill in a restaurant, with a massive Warayaki grill right in the center (because, where else would you put it?), With flames burning. at 900 ° C and shoot two meters in the air. Try the Wagyu prime rib for something out of the ordinary.
Netsu, Mandarin Oriental Jumeira, Dubai, Tuesday to Saturday 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tel: (04) 7772232. mandarinoriental.com/dubai
Celebrity Hotspot Nobu, by celebrity chef Nobu Matsuhisa, is famous the world over for his elegant and delicately crafted dishes that blend traditional Japanese cuisine with Peruvian ingredients. Nobu is well known for its sushi and tender black cod.
Nobu, Atlantis the Palm, Dubai, Saturday to Thursday 6 p.m. to 11 p.m., Friday noon to 3 p.m., 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Phone: (04) 426 2626. atlantisthepalm.com/nobu
Sumo Sushi & Bento
A family-run restaurant that has been in the UAE for 19 years, Sumo Sushi & Bento is the perfect stop when you get hungry while strolling through the mall. It’s also great for takeout, and you’ll find outlets across Dubai including JLT, Dubai Media City, and Al Garhoud.
Sumo Sushi & Bento, Jumeirah Town Center, Ground Floor, Jumeirah Town Center Mall, Jumeirah, Dubai, daily 11am to 12pm. sumoshibento.com
TOMO, Raffles Dubai
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TOMO really doesn’t need to be introduced, as this is one of the city’s most notable and oldest high-end Japanese restaurants. From its rooftop terrace, you have a breathtaking view of the Dubai skyline, day or night. Their menu celebrates the best of Japanese cuisine, and it has even had a visit from HH Sheikh Hamdan.
TOMO, Raffles Hotel, WAFI, Dubai, Saturday and Wednesday 12:30 p.m. to 12 p.m., Thursday and Friday 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. (04) 357 7888. tomo.ae
Over a decade old and still arguably the city’s most popular spot for Japanese cuisine, at Zuma, the menu is as elegant and sophisticated as the decor. The split-level space quickly tucks away for lunch and dinner and is also a popular spot for chic drinks in the living room. You’ll want to book ahead several weeks in advance to find the best table.
Zuma, Al Sa’ada Street, Dubai, Sunday to Wednesday 12 noon to 12 noon, Thursday 12 noon to 1 am, Fri 12:30 pm to 1 am. Phone: (04) 425 5660. zumarestaurant.com
Images: Facebook / provided