The first-ever Michelin Guide Dubai celebrates 69 restaurants that cover 21 cuisines. Eleven eateries were awarded the prestigious Michelin stars, while 14 were recognised as Bib Gourmand restaurants. One got a Green Star for sustainable gastronomy and 44 have been recognised as Michelin-selected restaurants.
Michelin called Dubai’s “spectacular” culinary map “as vibrant and diverse as it is energetic”. Gwendal Poullennec, international director of the Michelin Guide, said: “What makes Dubai’s culinary landscape so distinctive is its reflection of the more than 200 nationalities that call the city home, delivering an epicurean kaleidoscope. One thing all the restaurants in this fast-paced, dynamic and elegant city have in common is they are brimming with passion and enthusiasm. Today, Dubai is settled as an inspiring gastronomic destination and we have no doubts that gourmets from all over the world will be seduced by its very unique energy.”
One Michelin Star is awarded to restaurants for “high quality cooking that is worth a stop”; while two is for “excellent cooking that is worth a detour”; and three for “exceptional cuisine that is worth a special journey”.
Michelin Guide inspectors base their ratings on the universally applied set of five criteria, including the quality of the ingredients, the mastery of cooking, the harmony of flavours, the personality of the chef and the consistency both over time and across the entire menu.
Two Michelin Stars for two restaurants
>> Il Ristorante – Niko Romito was recognised for its “modern Italian fare, which comes with balance, purity and clarity”. Top quality ingredients are flown in from Italy, with highlights including fish and pasta dishes, according to Michelin.
>> STAY by Yannick Alléno, which is set in a colonial-style property at The Palm, “impresses with its less-is-more approach, which results in precise, sophisticated dishes that are skilfully crafted with French cooking as the base”.
One Michelin Star for nine restaurants
>> 11 Woodfire by chef-owner Akmal Anuar, who is of Malay origin, offers a global variety of vegetables, seafood and meats grilled to perfection over oak, hickory or hay.
>> Al Muntaha sits atop the Burj Al Arab and “offers sophisticated and refined French cuisine with Mediterranean influences”. It is led by Saverio Sbaragli, who had honed his craft at Three Michelin Starred Arpège.
>> Armani Ristorante presents “precise, modern Italian cooking at the Burj Khalifa, where beautifully decorated dishes are met with attentive, enthusiastic service”. According to Michelin, Italian favorites such as agnolotti del plin, filetto di scorfano and agnello al mirto “showcase the chefs’ mastery”.
>> Hakkasan at the Atlantis Hotel offers “reimagined Chinese dishes that are exclusive to Dubai”, including the lychee lobster with yuzu pearl.
>> Höseki is a nine-seat omakase restaurant helmed by a sixth-generation sushi master, Masahiro Sugiyama. Set on the fourth floor of the Bulgari Hotel, it offers a bespoke omakase experience using fresh ingredients imported daily from Japan.
>> Ossiano, located in the basement of the Atlantis Hotel next to the aquarium, is a world for creative fare. Its ‘Metanoia’ menus gain inspiration from chef Gregoire Berger’s childhood memories, “featuring dishes that come with fine texture contrasts and impressive clarity of flavour”.
>> Tasca by José Avillez in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel is set around an open kitchen, where the team “combines fresh, great quality produce with Portuguese dishes that are vibrant, innovative, and great for sharing”.
>> Torno Subito, owned by internationally acclaimed chef Massimo Bottura, is set within the W Hotel on the Palm. It offers Italian classics, pasta dishes and desserts “with a twist”.
>> Trèsind Studio, the brainchild of Himanshu Saini, offers original multi-course tasting menus featuring herbs and flowers grown on its rooftop terrace setting. Highlights include ghee-roasted crab, tandoori chicken dumpling and morel pulao with Assam tea dashi.
One restaurant gets a Michelin Green Star
>> Lowe is the first and only restaurant in Dubai to receive a Michelin Green Star. The kitchen team cooks on fire, practise nose-to-tail cooking and procure ingredients as locally as possible. As part of their efforts towards zero food waste, the restaurant’s “Waste NOT” dinners offer eight to 10 courses of would-be waste products, saved over the previous months.
14 restaurants receive a Bib Gourmand
These restaurants offer a value-for-money gourmet experience for an average price of Dh250 for a 3-course meal.
>> Al Khayma focuses on simple rustic Emirati cooking, slow cooked meats, Arabic spices and fresh bread cooked in the courtyard.
>> Bait Maryam serves up home-style Levantine dishes
>> Brasserie Boulud provides a little piece of France, offering everything from escargots and canard rôti to tarte Tatin and île flottante.
>> Fi’Lia celebrates the culinary knowledge passed down through generations of women with a menu of artisan pizzas to contemporary twists on traditional Italian dishes.
>> Folly offers an ingredient-driven menu “that focuses on precise, modern dishes cooked from a kitchen counter where diners can watch the chefs in action”.
>> Goldfish is a funky, buzzing sushi and yakitori concept by chef Akmal Anuar, and “sharing plates and wagyu steak are the order of the day”.
>> Ibn Albahr has a fresh fish counter where diners can choose what to eat and enjoy ingredient-driven fare.
>> Indya by Vineet is where street food meets sharing plates, with colourful dishes from the earth (vegetarian), land (meat) and sea.
>> Kinoya has five ramen dishes underpin the menu, while Japanese classics including sushi, sashimi, robata and tempura are on offer.
>> Ninive resembles a Bedouin tent with low tables and cosy sofas, and serves dishes from all over the Middle East and North Africa.
>> Orfali Bros is set in a two-storey open kitchen, where playful Mediterranean small plates with global influences are served.
>> REIF Japanese Kushiyaki focuses on robata-cooked, street food-style snacks along with a wide range of sushi, ramen and creative desserts.
>> Shabestan is the oldest Persian restaurant in Dubai. It serves traditional Persian dishes, marinated meats, freshly baked breads and mezze.
>> Teible is a minimalist bakery-cum-restaurant that showcases seasonal, local and occasionally fermented ingredients in great value dishes.
>> Young Chef Award: Solemann Haddad of Moonrise.
Born and bred in Dubai with a French mother and Syrian father, Solemann’s fascination with food and Japan began at a very early age. “Taking the best, mostly local, ingredients and fusing them with his heritage, he delivers an exciting omakase menu that is a blend of Japanese Kaiseki with Middle Eastern ingredients.”
>> Sommelier Award: Danijela Tesic of Ossiano
She has been recognised for her passion and enthusiasm for wine pairing, demonstrating knowledge of the wines in a very relaxed, unpretentious style.
>> Welcome and Service Award: Bait Maryam.
“Our inspectors were immediately taken by the warmth of the welcome they received when they dined here. Salam and her family showed genuine hospitality to everybody.”
Source: Khaleej Times