Dubai is a city of innovation. From its high-tech, state-of-the-art architecture, sprawling malls to the ever-changing, vibrant nightlife it always brings to mind a place filled with international, cultural and expectant professionals on the lookout for the next big thing.
This season an influx of new restaurants have flooded the restaurant scene so, for Dubai-dwelling foodies like me, this is an exciting time. With what seems like weekly new trends and dining spots opening I love to try new menu concepts and I'm always in search of my new favourite dining spot. Here's this season's pick of the best foodie hangouts in the city:
16 December marks the official launch of the highly anticipated Coya Dubai, located in the brand new Four Seasons Hotel on Jumeirah Beach Road. It's a sister property of the infamous Zuma and La Petite Maison in the Dubai International Finance Centre; both of which are fabulous restaurants. At the Coya pre-opening lunch, the food was and as expected, delicious, well presented and the service, spot on. If you haven't heard of Coya, it's the award-winning brand from London that offers a Peruvian menu (sans guinea pig) along with a pisco sour (the cocktail of Peru) bar.
There's also a members' cigar bar with live entertainment. Unlike many in Dubai, Coya is not a huge restaurant, which I love, but with 189 seats inside and 40 seats on the terrace, it's recommended to book well in advance. If you do get a table, make sure to include these dishes to your order: ceviche, the Solomillo de Res (spicy beef fillet) and a pisco sour.
Four Seasons Hotel, Jumeirah Beach Road, Tel. +971 4 326 9600, www.coyarestaurant.com
2. China Grill
For the past 27 years, China Grill has been one of New York's staple restaurants and this November launched in Dubai at the Westin Hotel. This stunning restaurant and lounge goes by the motto: "think outside the wok" promising guests that it's more than just a Chinese restaurant.
The venue is split across two floors with a bar and lounge area on the top level and the restaurant downstairs. The signature, open kitchen is in centre of the restaurant, creating a sense of theatre and spectacle as the chefs skilfully prepare the food. Top dishes to try: Lobster pancakes, duck salad, lamb spareribs.
The Westin Dubai, Mina Seyahi Beach Resort, Tel: +971 4 511 7333, www.chinagrilldubai.com
Clé launched in October this year in Al Fattan Currency House in Dubai's financial district, DIFC. Their launch was on of the most talked about events so far this season due to a star-studded guest list. The guests of honour included Victoria Secret models Irina Shayk and Alessandra Ambrosio, Nicky and Paris Hilton (who was also DJ-ing), Khloe Kardashian and rapper Akon.
As for the menu, you can expect modern Middle Eastern cuisine by Michelin-starred chef Greg Malouf. There's also a swanky lounge and an open-air terrace which is perfect during Dubai's winter season. Make sure to catch the performances while you're there.
Al Fattan Currency House, DIFC, Tel: +971 4 352 5150, www.cle-dubai.com