Dubai is known, among other things, for its multicultural culinary offer. You can taste specialties in all the corners of the world in the same place. Yet, when it comes to Japanese cuisine, there are some amazing restaurants that will make you feel right in the middle of Tokyo without leaving the UAE. That’s why we present you with the best Japanese restaurants in Dubai for you to taste only the finest flavors in Japan while in the city. We will share with you the locations, websites, types of cuisine, social media links, and phone numbers so you have all the necessary information to visit. Without further ado, let’s see the list!
- What is Japanese cuisine known for?
- What are the most popular Japanese dishes?
- What is unique about Japanese food?
- What are the must-try Japanese dishes?
- Japanese Restaurants in Dubai
- Closing thoughts on the Best Japanese Restaurants in Dubai
What is Japanese cuisine known for?
Japanese cuisine is known for its unique flavors, beautiful presentation, and emphasis on fresh, seasonal ingredients, subtle flavors and high-quality ingredients. It is also known for its use of traditional cooking techniques, such as grilling, broiling, and simmering, as well as its focus on seasonality and simplicity.
What are the most popular Japanese dishes?
There are many popular Japanese dishes, and the popularity may vary by region and personal preferences. Here are some of the most popular Japanese dishes:
Sushi is a dish made with vinegared rice and a variety of toppings, such as raw fish, cooked seafood, and vegetables. It is often served with soy sauce, wasabi, and pickled ginger.
Ramen is a noodle dish made with a flavorful broth and toppings such as sliced pork, boiled egg, and green onions. There are many different regional styles of ramen in Japan.
It is a relatively inexpensive and filling meal that is commonly found in ramen shops, convenience stores, and even vending machines throughout Japan. Ramen is enjoyed by people of all ages and is considered a staple food in Japanese cuisine
Tempura is a popular Japanese dish consisting of seafood or vegetables that are battered and deep-fried until crispy. The dish is thought to have originated in the 16th century when Portuguese missionaries introduced batter-fried foods to Japan. The Japanese perfected the dish over time, developing their own unique techniques and ingredients.
Tempura is not only a standalone dish, but it can also be a topping for rice dishes or an ingredient in sushi rolls. This is a renowned dish in Japan and is enjoyed universally.
Yakitori is a type of Japanese food that consists of skewered and grilled chicken. The name “yakitori” literally means “grilled chicken” in Japanese.
The chicken used in yakitori is typically cut into small pieces and threaded onto bamboo skewers before being grilled over hot charcoal. The chicken can be seasoned with various sauces and spices, such as soy sauce, sake, mirin, and ginger, among others.
Yakitori is often served in small pieces or bite-sized portions, making it a popular food for sharing or as a snack. It can be served on its own or as part of a larger meal, such as with rice, salad, or other side dishes.
Udon is a type of thick noodle that is often served in a hot soup with toppings such as sliced beef, tempura, or green onions. Udon noodles are thicker than soba noodles and are often served in a light broth with various toppings such as sliced scallions, tempura, or grilled meats.
Udon can also be served in hot pots, stir-fried dishes, and salads. The noodles are highly versatile and can be cooked in a variety of ways depending on the dish being prepared. Udon is often considered comfort food in Japan and is a popular dish during the colder months.
Teriyaki is a cooking technique in which meat or fish is grilled or broiled with a sweet and savory glaze made from soy sauce, mirin, and sugar. The word “teriyaki” comes from the Japanese words “teri,” which means glaze, and “yaki,” which means grilled or broiled.
Teriyaki sauce is typically made from soy sauce, mirin, sake or rice wine, and sugar or honey. The sauce is usually used as a marinade for meat or fish, or as a glaze for grilling or broiling.
Okonomiyaki is a savory pancake made with a variety of ingredients such as shredded cabbage, meat, seafood, and noodles. It is often topped with a sweet and savory sauce and mayonnaise.
The name “okonomiyaki” roughly translates to “grilled as you like it,” as it can be customized with a variety of toppings and sauces to suit individual tastes.
Okonomiyaki is a traditional Japanese dish that is fried on a flat iron griddle. Toppings such as mayonnaise, okonomiyaki sauce, dried bonito flakes, and green onions are often added as garnishes. It is a popular snack food sold by vendors on the street and can also be found in restaurants that specialize in making Okonomiyaki.
What is unique about Japanese food?
Japanese cuisine is distinct in many aspects, which is why it has become one of the most popular foods in the world. We have already determined the characteristics that make Japanese food so singular and make it the favorite of so many people.
Umami is known as the fifth taste, and it refers to a savory and rich flavor. Japanese cuisine is known for its emphasis on umami, which is often achieved through the use of ingredients such as dashi, miso, and soy sauce.
Japanese cuisine places a high value on using fresh and seasonal ingredients. This means that dishes often highlight the natural flavors of the ingredients without being overpowered by heavy seasonings.
Japanese cuisine is known for its beautiful presentation. Dishes are often arranged in an aesthetically pleasing way, with attention to color, texture, and shape.
Diverse culinary styles
Japanese cuisine encompasses a wide range of culinary styles, from sushi and sashimi to ramen and tempura. Each style has its unique flavors and presentation, providing a diverse culinary experience.
Japanese cuisine is generally considered healthy, with a focus on balanced and nutritious meals. Many traditional Japanese dishes include plenty of vegetables, fish, and rice, which are all nutrient-dense foods.
Overall, Japanese cuisine is unique in its attention to detail, balance, and harmony, resulting in dishes that are both delicious and visually stunning.
What are the must-try Japanese dishes?
1. Must-Try Japanese Appetizers
There are many delicious Japanese appetizers to choose from, but here are a few popular options that you might want to try:
- Edamame: Boiled or steamed young soybeans served with salt. It is a simple, healthy, and flavorful appetizer.
- Gyoza: Pan-fried or steamed dumplings filled with meat and vegetables. Gyoza is a popular appetizer in Japanese restaurants and can be found in many different flavors.
- Takoyaki: Gmall, round balls of batter filled with diced octopus, tempura scraps, and green onions. Takoyaki is often topped with mayonnaise, takoyaki sauce, and bonito flakes.
- Agedashi tofu: Deep-fried tofu served in a light soy sauce-based broth with grated daikon, green onions, and bonito flakes. It is a delicious and healthy appetizer that is often served in Japanese restaurants.
2. Must-Try Japanese Main Course
There are many delicious and popular Japanese main courses to try, but here are some must-try dishes:
- Tonkatsu: A breaded and deep-fried pork cutlet that is crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. It is typically served with a sweet and savory sauce, shredded cabbage, and rice.
- Sukiyaki: A hot pot dish made with thinly sliced beef, tofu, vegetables, and noodles, cooked in a sweet and savory soy sauce broth at the table. It is often eaten with raw egg as a dipping sauce.
- Sashimi: A dish of sliced raw fish or seafood that is served with soy sauce and wasabi. It is a fresh and simple dish that showcases the quality and flavor of the ingredients.
3. Must-Try Japanese Dessert
Japan has so many kinds of desserts, mostly they are sweet, here are some must-try Japanese desserts that you can consider:
- Mochi (daifuku): Sweet rice cake filled with sweetened red bean paste, ice cream, fruit or chocolate.
- Dorayaki: Pancake-like cakes filled with sweet red bean paste.
- Matcha ice cream: Ice cream made with green tea powder.
- Anmitsu: Jelly dessert with fruits and sweet syrup.
- Castella: A fluffy sponge cake made with sugar, flour, and eggs.
- Taiyaki: Fish-shaped cake filled with sweetened red bean paste or custard cream.
- Yokan: Sweet bean jelly made with agar, sugar, and red bean paste.
- Warabi Mochi: A jelly-like sweet made from bracken starch, coated with roasted soybean flour.
- Kuzu Mochi: Sweet mochi made from kudzu root starch, served with sweet syrup or kinako powder.
- Mitarashi Dango: Grilled sticky rice balls served with sweet soy sauce glaze.
4. Must-try Japanese Drinks
Everyone is aware of green tea, but did you know Japan has other beverages aside from green tea? here are some must-try Japanese drinks that you can consider:
- Green Tea (Matcha): A traditional Japanese drink made from finely powdered green tea leaves, often used in tea ceremonies.
- Sake: A Japanese rice wine that is brewed using rice, water, yeast, and koji mold. It comes in a range of flavors and varieties.
- Ramune: A carbonated soft drink that comes in a distinctive Codd-neck bottle with a glass marble in the neck.
- Calpis (Calpico): A sweet and tangy soft drink made from fermented milk, often mixed with soda water or fruit juice.
- Shochu: A Japanese distilled spirit made from a variety of ingredients, including barley, sweet potato, and rice.
- Japanese Whisky: A type of whisky that is distilled and matured in Japan, using traditional Scottish methods.
- Yuzu Juice: A citrus fruit juice with a tangy and refreshing taste, often used in cocktails or as a flavoring for dishes.
- Hoppy: A low-alcohol beer-flavored beverage that is often mixed with shochu.
- Mugicha: A roasted barley tea that is popular in Japan during the summer months as a cooling drink.
- Amazake: A sweet, non-alcoholic rice drink made from fermented rice and koji mold.
These are just a few examples of the many delicious Japanese dishes that are popular both in Japan and around the world.
Japanese Restaurants in Dubai
Once we have spoken about Japanese cuisine, what are you waiting for? We have all the details about Japanese restaurants in Dubai listed for you below:
- Nobu Dubai
- Kimuraya Authentic Japanese Restaurant
- Bento-Ya Sheikh Zayed Road
- Kimuraya Authentic Japanese Restaurant
- Minato Japanese Restaurant
- Kanpai Restaurant & Lounge Bar
- Mimi Kakushi
- Reif Japanese Kushiyaki
Zuma Dubai is in the international financial district, in the city’s center. It offers contemporary Japanese cuisine under the shadow of the world’s tallest structure, the Burj Khalifa.
Type of cuisine: Contemporary Japanese
Location: Zuma، Gate Village 06, Podium Level – Al Mustaqbal St – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97144255660
2. Nobu Dubai
The MICHELIN Guide has named Nobu restaurant on the famed Palm Jumeirah as one of the top restaurants in Dubai. It serves world-renowned Japanese cuisine with a Peruvian touch for an unforgettable gastronomic experience.
Type of cuisine: Japanese Peruvian
Location: Nobu Dubai, at Atlantis – 22nd floor – The Palm Jumeirah – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97144260760
3. Kimuraya Authentic Japanese Restaurant
Kimura-ya is a well-known restaurant franchise with over 200 locations in Japan. Its presence in Dubai is the first of its sort in the United Arab Emirates. Kimura-ya offers genuine Japanese izakaya-style cuisine, with a menu developed by the Japanese Chef and decor designed by cutting-edge designer Mayuka Kojima.
Type of cuisine: Japanese izakaya-style
Location: Kimuraya Authentic Japanese Restaurant – 1st Branch Business Bay, Anantara Downtown Dubai – Al A’amal St – Business Bay – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97144441455
4. Bento-Ya Sheikh Zayed Road
Chef Shinji Taniuchi established Bentoya Kitchen as an authentic Japanese restaurant in Dubai in 1997. After 23 years, the Bentoya name has become synonymous with Japanese food in Dubai.
Type of cuisine: Japanese
Location: Bento-Ya Sheikh Zayed Road، Block D,Al Kawakeb Building – Sheikh Zayed Rd – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97143430222
5. Kimuraya Authentic Japanese Restaurant
The restaurant offers a genuine Japanese izakaya eating experience from Japan. A variety of classic traditional and modern cuisine from the nation are available on the menu, including Japanese tapas, a Wagyu shabu (hotpot) buffet, Yakitori (Japanese style chicken skewers), and much more. A variety of Japanese drinks, including rare sake, yuzu, and shiso, accompany the food.
Type of cuisine: Japanese izakaya
Location: Kimuraya Authentic Japanese Restaurant – 3rd Branch Al Jaddaf, 1st Floor, Marriott Hotel, Dubai, Oud Metha Road Al Jaddaf Area – Dubai – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +971568370762
At TOMO, you will find a superb range of traditional Japanese meals from experienced Japanese Chefs. In addition, the ingredients are fresh and imported directly from Japan.
Type of cuisine: Japanese
Location: TOMO, Exit 56 – Umm Hurair 2 – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97143577888
7. Minato Japanese Restaurant
Minato is a traditional Japanese restaurant in Deira Creek, Dubai. Its warmth and authentic Japanese food have made it a top option among Japanese restaurants in the region for over a decade. The warm interiors and simple décor create an appealing atmosphere for guests, making Minato a favorite of many Japanese locals.
Type of cuisine: Japanese
Location: Minato Japanese Restaurant، Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Creek Al Makhtoum Rd – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97142227171
ROKA, located in Zaha Hadid’s Opus building in Business Bay, introduces its brand of modern Japanese Robatayaki food and urban architecture to Downtown Dubai. ROKA Dubai is the first foreign outpost, having opened shortly after the main restaurant on Charlotte Street celebrated its fifteenth anniversary.
Type of cuisine: Japanese Robatayaki
Location: ROKA, Level 1, The Opus by Omniyat – Al A’amal St – Business Bay – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97144397171
Back in 2018, YUi was the region’s sole specialized Japanese ramen shop. Their noodles are manufactured in-house and matured overnight to maintain the ideal texture. They use local chicken as the foundation for their broths, which are boiled for 10 hours.
Type of cuisine: Japanese noodles
Location: YUi, DUBAI DESIGN DISTRICT, R03, G FLOOR, BUILDING 7 – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97142434217
10. Kanpai Restaurant & Lounge Bar
Kanpai is a Japanese restaurant that brings culture to the famous Souk Al Bahar District, only a few steps from Dubai Mall, Dubai Fountain, and Burj Khalifa. This Japanese spot in Dubai will take you on a gastronomic trip of traditional Japanese foods, set in their distinctive contemporary yet appealing environment.
Type of cuisine: Japanese (traditional and contemporary)
Location: Kanpai Restaurant & Lounge Bar، Shop No.G-5, Level 3, Souk Al Bahar، Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Blvd, Downtown Dubai – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97144419262
Kiku’s dishes are made by infusing a blend of imported Japanese ingredients, to recreate the culinary tradition of Japan. The award-winning team has designed a one-of-a-kind menu of traditional favorites and trademark specialties, allowing customers to enjoy a taste of Japan right here in Dubai.
Type of cuisine: Japanese/Sushi
Location: Kiku, Le Méridien Dubai Hotel & Conference Centre – 51st St – Garhoud – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97147022455
12. Mimi Kakushi
Step back in time to an exotic era in Mimi Kakushi. The place offers a dining experience that combines time-honored cuisine with innovative thinking, providing far eastern flavors you’ll recognize alongside Western elements.
Type of cuisine: Japanese and Western fusion
Location: Mimi Kakushi, Four Seasons Resort – 23 A St – Jumeirah – Jumeirah 2 – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97143794811
Izakaya is a dynamic and buzzing place with the best of Japan’s cuisine. Authentic Japanese noodles, teppanyaki, sushi, and other dishes are available. You can also taste one of the greatest sake in town, and have wasabi made at your table.
Type of cuisine: Japanese
Location: Izakaya, JW Marriott Marquis Hotel – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +97144143000
14. Reif Japanese Kushiyaki
REIF serves contemporary, edgy, and inexpensive Japanese food, specializing in kushiyaki. It is a family-style place, in a serenely designed and friendly environment. Chef Reif Othman’s cuisine focuses on the many sections of the chicken, from the neck to the tail. Aside from kushiyaki, REIF also has a unique daily menu and an exclusive ‘experience’ chef’s table meal that is different from the a la carte menu.
Type of cuisine: Japanese
Location: Reif Japanese Kushiyaki, Dar Wasl Mall – Al Wasl Rd – Al Wasl – Dubai – United Arab Emirates
Phone number: +971502357071
Closing Thoughts on the Best Japanese Restaurants in Dubai
We hope you enjoyed this list of the best Japanese restaurants in Dubai. It’s a selection of only the finest restaurants around, praised by locals, visitors, and ex-pats. Dubai definitely knows its offering when it comes to dining outside, so any option is sure to satisfy your craving. Make sure to try as many of them as possible and taste the specialties each of them has on its menu. You can’t go wrong!