- Dubai Restaurant Week: Specially-curated menus and vibrant culinary scenes
- Foodie Experiences: 100 unique Foodie Experiences held across the 17 day period
- 10 Dirham Dishes: Over 200 restaurants offering offering delicious deals and fun ways to explore specially curated dishes and new cuisines across the city
- Etisalat by e& Beach Canteen: A foodie wonderland with over 50 concepts and cuisines for every palate, and a record-number of 95,000 visitors across 17 days
Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Dubai’s dynamic culinary scene took centre stage during the 10th edition of the Dubai Food Festival (DFF), the region’s highly anticipated and largest annual food festival. Over the course of 17 days, from April 21 to May 7, DFF showcased the best of Dubai’s gastronomic offerings, with an irresistible line-up of events and experiences that celebrated culinary innovation and creativity. From Dubai Restaurant Week, which featured over 50 of the city’s top restaurants, to the Foodie Experiences, highlighting exclusive masterclasses hosted by award-winning chefs and intimate Chef’s Tables, and the return of Etisalat by e& Beach Canteen, there was something for everyone. Additionally, the festival introduced the 10 Dirham Dish offering a selection of signature and unique dishes at unbeatable prices, reinforcing Dubai’s reputation as a leading gastronomic capital worldwide.
Dubai’s culinary scene is on an exponential rise, and this year’s citywide festival is a testament to the city’s gastronomic excellence. Hundreds of restaurants, cafes, and eateries came together to showcase the best of Dubai’s culinary offerings, providing a platform for visitors and residents to indulge in world-class dining venues, new restaurants and pop-ups and a wide range of culinary delights.
“I am incredibly proud of the success that the Dubai Food Festival has achieved, especially as we celebrate its 10th edition,” said Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE). “The festival is a testament to the city’s culinary innovation and global reputation as a gastronomic destination. It’s been a privilege to see how the event has grown over the years, featuring a much wider range of restaurants and award winning chefs who come together to make Dubai a leading gastronomy hub. The festival has become a staple in Dubai’s F&B scene, and we are proud of the role we play in showcasing the best of the city’s gastronomic offerings. As we look to the future, we are excited to continue to push the boundaries of what’s possible and to make the Dubai Food Festival even more exciting and unique for our guests.
Dubai Restaurant Week (DRW) was a standout feature of the festival’s 10th edition, bringing together over 50 of the city’s top restaurants and offering specially curated 3-course dinner or 2-course lunch menus at unbeatable prices across the city. With over 13,000 diners enjoying the diverse range of dining experiences on offer, DRW allowed guests to indulge in some of the most sought-after tables in town, from acclaimed hotspots like Torno Subito by Massimo Bottura to the always-buzzing Gordon Ramsay’s Bread Street Kitchen. With the likes of Demon Duck by Alvin Leung, Akira Back, Coya, Clap, Roka, Jaleo, Jun’s, Sucre, Hell’s Kitchen and Ce La Vi, also featuring on the menu, diners were spoilt for choice, Restaurant Managers and Chefs were extremely happy with the new footfall they received as diners tried new cuisines and locations.
DFF’s 10th edition also saw the return of the popular Foodie Experiences, which offered 100 handpicked and curated events, including Chef’s Tables, masterclasses hosted by award-winning chefs, immersive experiential dining events at the city’s best restaurants, culinary collaborations, and workshops for young foodies. Gourmands were in for a treat with a wide array of global culinary explorations that taught them how to make national dishes and signature plates from renowned and award-winning chefs. These one-of-a-kind masterclasses included a unique Oyster Shucking experience at Dibba Bay Oysters, Specialty Coffee classes at RAW Coffee Company, Masterclasses with chefs at Reif Japanese Kushiyaki, Fermented Foods Masterclasses by 21 Grams, and a COYA Signature Masterclass.
DFF also played host to some of the world’s most celebrated and award-winning chefs, who dazzled attendees with their culinary expertise through a series of unforgettable Chef’s Tables. Each curated tasting menu was a feast for the senses, showcasing authentic flavours from a range of global cuisines, and paired with a unique dining experience. Foodies were treated to a sumptuous Japanese Chef’s Table at Katsuya, while Bada Dining served up an exclusive eight-course that left taste buds tingling. For a truly luxurious experience, Nobu played host to a private dining event, Smoke & Mirrors at SLS Dubai took guests on a unique caviar tasting journey with Chef Claudio Cardoso while Chef Vikas Khanna delighted diners with his Taste of Kinara event. The city’s top restaurants stepped up to the plate with a series of unmissable events, including an eight-course Chef’s Table curated by Kunal Kapoor at Pincode , and a culinary journey featuring the flavours of Southern Italy and the AFmalfi Coast at Alici with Head Chef Domenico Santagada. Each event was a true celebration of the art of fine dining, showcasing the very best of what the city has to offer.
To celebrate the 10th edition of DFF, the 10 Dirham Dish was launched. As part of this initiative, more than 200 restaurants and cafes proudly showcased their signature dishes at the unbeatable price of AED10 across the 17 days of DFF. From mouthwatering mains to delectable desserts, foodies were spoiled for choice with an array of classic and signature dishes on offer. Whether they were in the mood for something savory or sweet, there was something to please every palate.This was in partnership with Zomato, as participating restaurants included Pierchic, Tortuga, Trattoria, The Smokehouse at Bla Bla, Skafos, and more.
The Etisalat e& Beach Canteen celebrated a decade of success in style, attracting a record number of 95,000 visitors and serving as one of the festival’s most popular highlights. The pop-up dining venue , with its retro beach theme, offered free admission to its 10 unique zones and over 50 food concepts. With live entertainment and a plethora of daily activities and pop-ups, it provided an opportunity for food lovers, friends, and families to bask in the great outdoors while indulging in mouth-watering delicacies. Kicking off on the Eid Al Fitr weekend, the event commenced with a magnificent fireworks display, traditional performances on the main stage, and the launch of the Food Focus Dubai Exhibition as the city was invited to participate in an open call to capture Dubai’s unique food scene. A panel of judges selected the top 30 photographers to exhibit their work at the Etisalat e& Beach Canteen, and the top 3 winners were awarded up to AED 10,000 as a cash prize. To mark a decade of DFF, a digital gallery showcasing pictures and videos from the past ten years was also on view, offering visitors a chance to go down memory lane. The event was presented by Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), and Brag as its creative partner.
In addition to Etisalat by e& Beach Canteen, there were many outdoor foodie markets, pop-up restaurants, music events, and activations that took place during Dubai Food Festival’s 10th edition, including What the Food at Al Serkal Avenue and Time Out Market’s 2nd Anniversary.
As the curtains draw to a close on another exhilarating edition of DFF, foodies in the city are left with a plethora of unforgettable experiences to cherish until the next festival. From savouring mouth-watering signature dishes to attending exclusive masterclasses and relishing chef’s tables in collaboration with some of the best restaurants in the city, DFF 2023 has reinforced Dubai’s standing as a trailblazing gastronomic hub, drawing global attention to its vibrant culinary scene. Through its diverse range of dining experiences, including fine dining restaurants, unique culinary experiences and food trucks, Dubai offers something for everyone, from seasoned foodies to adventurous eaters. The festival has undeniably created lasting memories that will continue to tantalize taste buds and inspire gastronomes to continue exploring the city’s culinary landscape.
As the festival comes to a close, Dubai Food Festival is pleased to announce a partnership with Arabian Adventures and the Dubai College of Tourism (DCT), where foodies will be invited to create a Dubai-based food tour for tourists and residents. The competition will provide the successful entrants with the opportunity to see their proposed food tour become a reality, including training as a tour guide and relevant promotion. More information will be shared in the near future.
About Dubai Food Festival 2023:
Dubai Food Festival (DFF) is a citywide culinary celebration of Dubai’s gastronomy scene through a packed programme which includes Dubai Restaurant Week, Foodie Experiences, Etisalat by e& Beach Canteen, and other events taking place throughout the city, including activities and special promotions across Dubai’s gastronomy sector and much more. DFF promotes the diversity, authenticity, value for money and experiential offerings of Dubai’s ever evolving gastronomy offering, from five-star gourmet dining to unique hidden gems, home-grown concepts, restaurant pop-ups and much more. Organised by Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), DFF celebrated its 10th edition which ran from 21 April to 7 May 2023.