Knives and forks at the ready! The ultimate food fiesta is back to stuff Dubaiites into a proper food coma. The Dubai Food Festival (DFF) has resurfaced for 2023 and the culinary carnival is doing big things for a milestone moment – the 10th anniversary! Besides fan-favourite events that are staples at the festival, such as the Etisalat Beach Canteen and Dubai Restaurant Week, there are fresh and fabulous deals you want to scoop up.
Until May 7, you can explore around 13,000 food spots, from discovering new fine dining restaurants without breaking the bank to checking out street food hidden gems that have flown under the radar. Below’s a detailed breakdown of how to maximise your Dubai Food Festival experience and everything that’s on offer.
10 Dirham Dishes for the 10th anniversary
This clever foodie deal gets a 10/10 from us. Dubai Food Festival has teamed up with an array of eateries around the city so you can relish selecting dishes on their menu for just AED10. Good food shouldn’t cost an arm and a leg, whether that’s Bur Dubai’s popular Nablus Kanafeh, the eggplant tempura at trendy Madinat Jumeirah bar Blind Tiger, or Demon Duck by Alvin Leung’s signature shrimp toast at the other end of Dubai in Bluewaters. From Deira to Jebal Ali, there’s a steal-of-a-meal deal waiting for you. Click for the full list along with the exact dish
Etisalat by e& Beach Canteen
This iconic dining pop-up has been a showstopper of Dubai’s food scene and it’s made a grand return in 2023. Jumeirah Beach comes alive with a slew of food trucks, live entertainment and workshops. Make sure to dig your toes into the sand with a walk down ‘Memory Lane’, a photo exhibition dedicated to capturing the evolution of Dubai’s culinary landscape this past decade. Besides that, the annual hits such as the Food Plaza with its dishes served in upcycled containers, the Beach BBQ zone and Food Truck Paradise.
Making a refreshing debut is the first-ever Mocktail Bar which will be pouring out alcohol-free drinks for all. Also worth your appetite is Bahr, a sustainable dining concept by farm2table that will feed you international delicacies made from artisanal and organic products from the UAE. To top your food with fun, check out the games section with a bull ride and carnival-style skill games.
Those with kids should amble over to Kids Adventure Island which comes with bumper cars, arts and crafts sessions, a brand-new splash zone with swan boating and more. Finally, make sure you check out one of Beach Canteen’s many sustainability workshops and learn how
📍 Jumeirah Beach (behind Sunset Mall); from 4pm-12am
Dubai Restaurant Week
From April 28 to May 7, your tastebuds can test drive the signature dishes of some of Dubai’s high-end restaurants – both the hottest new launches and iconic veterans – as part of Dubai Restaurant Week. A total of 52 top restaurants will be serving up 2-course lunches for AED 95 and 3-course dinners for AED 150 per person. You’ll eat at places such as Michelin-selected hotspots such as 3fils, Hell’s Kitchen and Brasserie Boulud and gorge on varied cuisines, from Asian fusion to Arabic, European and international. Click for the full list of restaurants
Unique foodie Experiences
The gourmet delights continue with tailored experiences that Dubai Food Festival has rolled out. Budding home chefs and self-confessed gourmands can dive into the history of ingredients and cuisines with this array of events. Sit inside Atlantis, The Palm’s underwater restaurant Ossiano and learn about caviar with their nine-course Journey of Caviar experience. Experience French cuisine in all its glory at Drift, have a go at an Asian afternoon tea and Taiko and enjoy fancy Italian seafood in quirky pull-ring tins at Mare by Bussola’s Opposti Dinner.
Learn the secrets of preparing paella that falls of your fork at Lola Taberna Española’s Paella Masterclass, whip up kimchi like a Korean grandma from the skills you pick up at Chef Ted Shin’s sessions at Bada Dining in Novotel Suites, Mall of the Emirates and more. There’s a zero-waste tasting menu at Ginger Moon for sustainability-focused foodies, a home coffee brewing master class by Roasters and more.
Watch master chefs at work up close at and pick the brains of Dubai’s culinary geniuses at events like the Vegetarian Chef’s Table at Avatara, Dubai’s only fine-dining vegetarian restaurant. Or let celebrity chef Roberto Segura walk you through modern Japanese dishes at of Tabū’s in the St Regis Hotel. This is also your gateway into some cool collaborations such as the one-day-only Torno Subito x Ferrari’s Chef’s Table, where your palate will enter into high gear with Chef de Cuisine Alessio Pirozzi’s exclusive menu.
Fussy eaters who turn up their noses at evolved flavours will be transformed thanks to these 4 masterclasses and interactive sessions dedicated to children. They can learn about Emirati cuisine at Arabian Tea House, shake up crazy milkshakes at Black Tap, wield a sushi mat like a pro after Reif Kushyaki’s sushi masterclasses, and roll out pizzas and cookies at Marina Social.
To book your spots at these foodie experiences and to know more click here