These watering holes might be on your radar for drinking, but did you know they serve up some top dishes too?

From unique dining experiences, to wallet-friendly dinner deals perfect for pairs, we’re spoiled for choice when it comes to dining out in Dubai.

And if you’re looking for somewhere fresh to head to this weekend, we’ve got you covered. This week, we’re uncovering the menu’s behind some of the city’s top watering holes, and finding it’s well worth checking out these hotspots for more than just a drink.

PS, missed last week’s round-up? Check it out here.


This hidden den in Al Barsha is known for it’s Studio 54 style vibes, dim lighting and inventively-named themed nights that quickly fill the dance floor on weekends. But head down slightly earlier, and you’ll be able to take advantage of a deli-meets-brasserie menu. There’s low level lounge tables for grazing, or velvet booths of restaurant-style seating for those looking for a more formal dining experience. On the menu, expect lots of sharing dishes, from Baybel croquettes (which we can’t get enough of) and a whole section dedicated to poutine to sharing boards of charcuterie – a chef’s selection of cured meats, cheeses and pickles. There’s also some heartier dishes for one, such as braised beef short rib and roast half chicken. For dessert, don’t miss out on a deep fried mars bar – it might just be the best Dhs35 you spend. If you stay for the party, expect quirky sets of R&B remixes spun to the backdrop of Pulp Fiction.

Barbary, TRYP by Wyndham, Barsha Heights, Sun to Weds 5pm to 3am, Thurs to Sat, 12pm to 3am. Tel: (04) 247 6688.

Soho Garden

Soho Garden might have become the go-to spot for a big night out on the weekends (they bring some top house acts to the city on both Thursday and Friday), but what about their new menu? We weren’t overly impressed with the food first time around, but the new ‘Mediterranean Brasserie’ menu is well worth heading down to the hotspot early for. Food service starts from 8pm until midnight, so it’s perfect for those looking to dine before the party kicks in. On the menu, it’s a mixed bag of British, Mediterranean and American dishes with an influence from all over – expect sharing starters including a staple burrata, hummus, and beef carpaccio, as well as meaty main courses. The lamb chops are a must-try, as is the grilled baby chicken, but be sure to order sides – most mains arrive without. Service can be a little slow, so don’t expect a quick dinner experience, and while this venue might be more drink focused- you’re missing a trick if you don’t give the food a go.

Soho Garden, Meydan, Dubai, Weds to Sat, 7pm to 3am (food until 12am). Tel: (056) 82 22 559.


Qwerty in Media One Hotel might be the go-to spot for a bucket-sized glass of wine during happy hour, but the casual Media City spot has just appointed a new executive chef, and a new menu has come with it. A few of our favourite dishes remain (the fish finger sandwich and Singapore noodles have thankfully stayed), but both the menu for lunch and dinner have had a slightly more upscale revamp. Welcome additions include Saganaki (deep fried cheese), burrata with grilled peaches and prawn tempura to start, while a chicken schnitzel in a parmesan and herb crust and prawn and courgette risotto have been introduced as some hearty new options for main. As both a spot for a working lunch or after-work dinner, we’d rate this as a top spot in the area for quick and easy, good quality dining.

Qwerty, Media One Hotel, Dubai Media City, daily, 6am to 10.30am, 12pm to 12am. Tel: (04) 427 1000.

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