Big flavour inbound imminently…

As a city of notable culinary credentials, Abu Dhabi is constantly providing fresh reasons to dine-out on. Big international brands and local restauranters have already launched some very exciting new dining destinations in 2022, but trust us, there are more exciting developments to come.



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A post shared by EL&N LONDON (@elan_cafe)

One of the UK capital’s most covetous cafe experiences, EL&N launched in DIFC earlier this year, and via the budget investigative journalist method of us spotting some hoardings, it appears that a second UAE branch is headed for Yas Bay Abu Dhabi. EL&N is known for stylish pink war paint, Insta-fresh menu items and an A-List celebrity following. And knowing Abu Dhabi’s penchant for posh coffees, we’re predicting this place will be booked out weeks in advance.

Yas Bay @elan_cafe

Din Tai Fung

The denizens of dim sum. If you’re a fan of Chinese food, there’s a strong chance you’ll already be well acquainted with Din Tai Fung. The brand began its journey in Taiwan, but the appeal was enough to see it spread to 12 countries worldwide. Two separate branches in Hong Kong have even been awarded Michelin stars. Din Tai Fung offers a range of Taiwanese and Chinese food, occasionally with an occidental twist. Their often open-kitchens are probably perhaps best known for a range of flavour-filled dim sum.Dumpling devotees can knock chopsticks against meat, seafood and veg wontons, potstickers, shumai and juicy Chinese buns. But what really brings the boys and girls to the yard is the signature collection of XiaoLongBao, 18-fold puckered pastry wraps packed with juicy bundles of mutton or chicken and crab, served with a selection of dipping condiments. We can’t wait

The Galleria Al Maryah Island @dintaifungae

Sticky Rice


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This homegrown hidden gem, a Thai Restaurant represented by a totemic cartoon duck ‘Kew’ — will be launching its first permanent fixture in Abu Dhabi, located at Yas Mall. It’s an eatery with a big following in Dubai, built off the back of highly covetous, occasionally unpronounceable, Bangkokkian cuisine  — pad krapow, tamarind chicken wings, kanom tom, tom yum and of course mango sticky rice. And once you go sticky, there’s no others you’ll picky.

Yas Mall @stickyriceae

La Serre

This Parisian style bistro and boulangerie is all opening up in Yas Island’s mega mall, an import from Dubai — it offers a wide range of French foodie flair to Champs on. From plats principal such as corn fed chicken stuffed with comte cheese, turkey ham and roasted ratte potato with mushroom sauce; to more petite bites like watermelon salad with almond, mint and feta — a refreshing salad, perfect for a summers day. Because it’s a bakery you also get oven-fresh crunch baguettes, dainty quaint croissants and ooh la la, chunky tranches of traditional French toast.

Yas Mall @laserredubai


The first Montauk Boutique Cafe & Restaurant opened in Al Bateen in March last year and has been treating the capital’s coffee connoisseurs to a ‘Hamptons-inspired’ experience ever since. With a menu made for the Instagram age, beautiful breakfasts, extravagant mains and interiors fit for fashion mag shoots, we can’t wait to see how much of that style gets replayed in this upcoming Yas Mall location.

Yas Mall @montaukabudhabi


This much-loved Jumeirah-born restaurant is getting a capital-based cousin in Sheikha Fatima Park in the not too distant future. They offer a selection of Asian-fusion cuisine (think brioche buns with crispy fried chicken and sambal sauce) and more thoroughbred regional dishes (try the Japanese ramen, Malaysian shrimp curry, and kimchi fried rice for a few aromatic examples). The venue looks almost ready to drop and we frankly cannot wait to try it out.

Sheikha Fatima Park @lovemamafri

Pinky Fish

Yet another concept from MBT Restaurant Management, this seafood focused diner promises a “unique signature interactive tableside experiences”. We don’t know for sure, but from the whispers we’ve heard, it sounds like this menu will have a Mediterranean flavour. Could we see plateless servings of paellea, like a sort of European version of the Dampa serving ritual? We can’t wait to find out. 

Al Qana @alqana_ae

Space Café

Speaking about the big second step in the brand’s journey, general manager, Abdulla Alhesbi said: “Building on the success of our first store opening in Ras Al Khaimah two years ago, we are taking great pride in expanding our local brand in the capital, in one of the most sought-after locations.

“Al Qana is the ideal location for our guests to find their perfect space where they can enjoy their time over a variety of food and beverages in a unique friendly ambiance.”

Al Qana @spaceae

Grand Beirut

Also at Al Qana, this will be the fourth UAE outlet of the popular Lebanese restaurant chain owned and operate by MBT Restaurant Management. The group has had a busy year, with new concepts Beirut Sur Mer and Raclette opening on Saadiyat Island to grand appraisal. The brand’s reputation for authenticity, consistency and swoon-worthy interior design makes this announcement worth getting very excited about.

Al Qana @grandbeirutuae

The restaurants at Rixos Marina Abu Dhabi

Probably. There’s a chance that this iconic ‘arch-on-stilts’ hotel (the architecture formally known as Fairmont Marina Abu Dhabi) that seems to have been a part of the Corniche skyline forever, will — eventually be opening this year. And with it, naturally a string of exciting new food and beverage offerings. Full disclosure we have literally no trust-worthy information on what those outlets might be — but looking at the existing Rixos portfolio, we can wildly speculate on the possibility of there being a Turkish (or fusion) style brasserie, an Asian restaurant perhaps (likely Japanese or pan-Asian) and a modern-Mediterranean/international venue. More news on that, as and when we get it.

Flamingo Room by Tashas

We have received confirmation that a second UAE branch of Flamingo Room by Tashas will be opening somewhere in Abu Dhabi later this year (either Q3 or potentially Q4), though we cannot currently confirm or deny where that might be. The original Flamingo Room by Tashas opened its doors back in 2017 at the appropriately stunning Jumeirah Al Naseem hotel in Dubai. The striking interiors there, give sophisticated finishes to inspiration drawn directly from Africa’s enchanting wildernesses. Playful features such as meerkats and monkeys cast in bronze blend effortlessly with flamingo-pink and gold art-deco styling, and the elegance of the food and drinks menu. It’s peak safari chic.


There’s not a lot of info out there in the public domain, but if this is the same Kronful as the one in Beirut — Yas Mall has some big waves of Levantine comfort food on its way.

Yas Mall 

Shiroi Izakaya

Again we don’t have the details on this yet, but an izakaya is a boutique Japanese restaurant, usually serving sushi or street food.

Yas Mall

All the (likely more than 80) new food and beverage outlets at Reem Mall

Which we have no confirmed opening date for yet, but you can check out all the latest confirmed information in our most recent completion update.

Images: Provided