Loosen the belt and pile up your plate at these all-you-can eat packages
Feast like there’s no tomorrow, Dubai-style, with these unlimited food deals.
Buffet, all-you-can-eat, unlimited, whatever you call these dining deals, Dubai loves a bottomless plate of food. With that in mind, this week we’ve sought out Dubai restaurants where you can eat endlessly and handsomely, for a set price. We’ve avoided Friday brunches and every hotel in town’s signature all-day-dining restaurant in favour of a choice selection of mid-week meals and leisurely Saturday breakfasts that we think offer something fun, unusual or simply excellent value. So grab your baggiest trousers: on your marks, get set, eat!
Under Dhs49 Rangoli The all-you-can-eat vegetarian Gujarati thali is served on the upper floor of this busy restaurant. All the diners are served the same meal on a large circular tray with five small dishes containing vegetable curries, beans, dahl, a chapati, salad and two types of rice. The tasty little portions are topped up on request, and you get a glass of lassi to wash it down with. The chapatis come out fresh and hot and at Dhs22 per person it’s a Bur Dubai bargain worth seeking out. Dhs22 per person. Daily 7pm-11.30pm. Cosmos Lane, Opposite ITL Building, Meena Bazaar, Bur Dubai (04 351 5873).
Spice Kraft An extremely generous thali selection, with as many refills as your stomach can handle, available every day of the week. This popular and affordable JLT restaurant serves up traditional Indian vegetarian fare, focusing on dishes from Gujarat and the northern regions of India. There are two thali options, both made up of several small individual dishes, to choose from – The Spice Kraft thali (Dhs22) and the Gujarati thali (Dhs23), and the types of dishes and breads included in each is different, though both are hearty. So generous are the portions (which come with two breads as well as rice) that unless you’ve hollow legs, you probably won’t even need to ask for more. Excellent value for money and plenty of variety means return visits are likely. Dhs22-23 per person. Cluster I, JLT (04 365 5329).
Steaky The lunch deal gets you unlimited soup and salad from the buffet, plus a main, dessert and drink served to your table for just Dhs55, while the unlimited soup and salad bar alone (available every day) will set you back Dhs39. Claiming more than 40 different salads, Steaky’s promise doesn’t quite live up to expectation – it’s not so much dozens of different salads as salad ingredients – olives in one bowl, cucumbers in another, and so on. At least it’s all fresh, plus there are a couple more complete offerings, such as a potato salad, plus two different soups to slurp. As the salad bar selection lacks any protein items, you may find the lunch deal far more satisfying, not to mention far better value for money. Dhs39 salad bar, Dhs55 lunch deal. Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard, Downtown Dubai (04 454 8998).
Dhs50-99 C.taste For just Dhs99 you can indulge in an all-you-can-eat burger night, with sandwiches cooked to your preference at a live cooking station. Start by choosing beef, chicken or veggie burgers and add your own salads and basic toppings. There is also a selection of breaded seafood options and chicken casserole dishes. Indulge your sweet tooth with a choice of desserts including panna cotta, cinnamon and apple pudding and fresh fruit salad. Wash it all down with two complimentary house beverages. Overall, it is great value for money with tip top service. Dhs99 per person. Tue 6.30pm-10.30pm. Centro Barsha (04 704 0000).
Sobahn Sitting atop the A-Mart Asian supermarket, Sobahn serves up a buffet spread consisting mainly of Japanese and Korean cuisine, with the occasional Chinese dish thrown in for good measure. The predominantly East Asian clientele suggests that the food is pretty authentic, or that it’s just good value for money at Dhs99 per person. The offerings are a bit hit-and-miss, with the gimbap doing well and the sushi less so. Some of the hot dishes also fail to impress, but there are plenty of options, from chicken cutlet to Korean barbecue. The friendly service and relaxing setting is another reason to give it a try. Dhs99 per person (food only). Fri 6pm-10.30pm. Matloob Building, Sheikh Zayed Road (04 380 7888).
The Pavilion You’ll immediately be drawn to the rustic-looking breakfast spread set up in the middle of this airy restaurant. Stocked full of pastries, cured meats, cheese, juices and everything else you could expect for your morning meal, it certainly wakes you up. This is just one part of the offering for the ‘Bench’ deal; choose from a range of egg dishes and coffee to complete the feast. While you’ll likely find the place to yourself during the opening few hours, it starts to pick up from 11am onwards. Dhs99 per person. Sat 8am-1pm. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Boulevard, Downtown Dubai (04 447 7025).
Dhs100-199 Benihana Every Saturday from 6pm to 11pm, the kuidaore night features an unlimited selection of Japanese food, from sushi to teppanyaki, served a la carte. Literally meaning ‘eat until you drop’, the kuidaore nights at this popular licensed JBR restaurant feature a menu of sharing plates. Food arrives speedily, albeit not always piping hot from the pan. Start with an array of appetisers including chicken gyoza, niko dango and ebi tempura, followed by a bento of tuna and salmon sushi and sashimi. Next choose from either a selection of Benihana main courses, or for an extra Dhs20, the traditional Benihana teppanyaki, which seems to be the most popular choice. Round off with tempura-fried ice-cream, fruit salad and mango sorbet. Phew! From Dhs199 per person (soft drinks), Dhs269 (house beverages). Amwaj Rotana, The Walk, JBR (04 428 2000).
Channels A daily dinner buffet with a different cuisine on offer every day. The spread is extensive and on the day we visited it was the British ‘Channel’ serving up traditional English fare such as toad in the hole, roast beef, fish and chips, and a selection of hearty home-made pies. The service here is impeccable, considering that it’s a buffet, the friendly staff made sure that our soft drinks were topped up, napkins folded when we left the seats and showed us what was on offer to whet our appetites. All of the hot food is well protected in cloches or under hot lights, but the desserts were left out. The dill smoked salmon was delicious and tender, and the pies were a lovely slice of London. Dhs175 per person. Media Rotana, TECOM (04 435 0201).
Choices This Italian-themed buffet offers a good selection of appetisers, including a salad bar with plenty of veggies and typical classics like mozzarella cheese and garlic-infused bruschetta, as well as loads of antipasta. For mains there’s a variety of pizza and decent risotto, all of which are replenished regularly, as well as live cooking at the made-to-to order pasta station. The dessert selection looks impressively huge, and the taste doesn’t let the side down. It doesn’t tend to get too crowded, so no need to deal with huge line-ups at the cooking stations and the staff are friendly and efficient. For a hotel-based buffet option, it’s decent enough value for money. Dhs179 (with soft drinks), Dhs229 (with grape and hops). Tue 6.30pm-11.30pm. Al Bustan Rotana, Casablanca Road, Al Garhoud (04 705 4285).
Flow Kitchen Not a brunch in the Dubai sense (despite being on a Friday), the Breakslow dining deal is an inspired attempt at providing a long, lazy and unlimited breakfast experience. And very successful it is too. Diners are served items such as fresh fruit, granola with yoghurt and a bread basket to get them started. Vats of fresh juices and flavoured waters are lined up for help-yourself service. Then come the endless plates of mini bites, served at the table by the chefs themselves, such as frittata, miniature pancakes, salmon and blini, and more. If that is not enough, order egg dishes from the menu, explore the buffet of items such as ‘breakfast shawarma’ and breakfast meats. Since coffee is also unlimited, this is most definitely the way to start the day. Fun, excellent value and exceptional service too. Big thumbs up. Dhs185 (soft drinks). Dhs295 (house beverages). Dhs465 (half a bottle of bubbly). Fri 11.30am-4pm. Ongoing. Fairmont The Palm, Palm Jumeirah (04 457 3457).
Fountain Restaurant Fountain’s Wednesday night ‘Food for Life’ concept promises ‘healthy, nutritious food, using fresh ingredients that taste really good’. Guests can choose one à la carte option course alongside a small buffet of salads, sushi, and mains including lean beef chilli and salmon. Oddly for a health-themed night, none of the five mains on offer are vegetarian. A novel concept let down by a small selection and sometimes bland taste. Dhs130 (with soft drinks) only. Dhs160 (with one grape or hops). Dhs210 (with free flowing grape or hops). Wed 7pm-11pm. Mövenpick Hotel & Apartments Bur Dubai, Oud Metha (04 336 6000).
GQ Bar Sushi Sundays Stylish black slates of sushi are served á la carte-style in this swish bar’s much less buzzing dining area, where chilled beats set the Sunday scene. Each diner is served a generous platter of assorted sashimi and sushi, some of the tastiest we’ve tried in the city, and once you’ve ploughed through it, you can keep ordering. The sushi is impeccably fresh, rolls are bite-size but varied and you’ll find everything from California maki and crunchy tempura prawn rolls to deep-fried seaweed rolls filled with crispy soft shell crab. It also caters to vegetarians. Dhs150 including a mixed drink. GQ Bar, JW Marriott Marquis, Sheikh Zayed Road, Business Bay (04 321 4541).
The China Club
This fancy-looking Cantonese restaurant honours the region’s age old pastime of dim sum, and is even one of very, very few Dubai restaurants to use a traditional dim sum trolley. This deal includes a choice of soup (hot and sour Szechuan or chicken and sweetcorn), fried pastries such as spring rolls and prawn wonton-style parcels, followed by endless helpings of steamed dumplings and snacks from the trolley. Forgo the noodle and rice sides, which are all fried, and tend to be tiny-portioned and very greasy. Save your appetite instead for delicious steamed squid in a softly satay flavoured sauce, prawn dumplings coated in glutinous textured rice and plenty of classics such as ha gao, siew mai and barbecue chicken buns.
Dhs108 (including tea). Dhs139 from September 1. Daily noon-3pm, 7.30pm-11pm. Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek (04 205 7333).
Dhs200-299 Amala Indulge in fine Indian cuisine every night of the week at this smart restaurant within the grand Zabeel Saray. No need to walk around with a plate in hand as diners here order dishes from an extensive á la carte menu with each dish brought to the table. There’s a vast set of starters to whet your appetite and the spiced pan-fried scallops are a sumptuous delight. Mains offer a variety of curries and tandoori meats, with the lamb chops alone worth going back for. Dhs295 per person (excluding drinks). Daily 6pm-1am. Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, Palm Jumeirah (04 453 0444).
Fogo Vivo A modern take on the churrascaria concept sees skewers of barbecued meat delivered to your table until you admit defeat and retire. Go easy on the seafood and salad starters to concentrate on the barrage of meat, chicken and lamb to follow. It is a tiny morsel of barbecued chicken hearts that stood out as the feast’s highlight, although we appreciated the regular flow of side dishes delivered direct to the table. This is the restaurant to visit if you want lots and lots of meat and very little else. Dhs245 with soft drinks, Dhs345 with selected beverages, Dhs495 with premium drinks. JA Ocean View Hotel, Dubai Marina (04 814 5599).
Picante Not strictly a buffet – but even better, we say – Portuguese old Dubai gem Picante allows guests to order an unlimited range of dishes from its à la carte menu, alongside free-flowing grape, for a very reasonable price. The food is fresh, rustic flavoursome, traditional in taste, and a favourite of the Mediterranean expat community. Highly recommended. Dhs225. Daily noon-3pm; 7pm-midnight. Four Points by Sheraton Bur Dubai, Khalid Bin Walid Road (04 397 7444).
Seafire The ‘Endless Summer Honey Ribs’ promotion is an all-you-can-eat à la carte offering at this steakhouse. Mouth-watering honey ribs accompanied by a number of sides including moreish coal baked potato and authentic Tennessee coleslaw are the order of the night. Lip-smackingly juicy and perfectly tender, the ribs are ‘oh-my-goodness tasty’, and you can have as many portions as you like. Dhs280 (food only). Daily 5pm-11.30pm. Until August 31. Atlantis the Palm, Palm Jumeirah (04 426 2626).
More all you can eat Al Dawaar An international buffet featuring European, Middle Eastern, Asian and Japanese dishes at Dubai’s only revolving restaurant, with views over the Gulf. Dhs185 (food only). Daily 12.30pm-3.30pm. Dhs235 (food only). Daily 6.30pm-midnight. Ongoing. Hyatt Regency Dubai, Deira (04 317 2222).
Ananta The ‘Sunday food bazaar’ dining deal offers unlimited Indian food, with a chaat and tandoor station, and live music from the sitar player. Dhs250 per person. Dhs350 (house beverages). Sun 7pm-10pm. The Oberoi Dubai, Business Bay (04 444 1444).
Aquara Restaurant Saturday nights offer that great British tradition of roast dinner, here served from carvery cooking stations, all with Yorkshire puddings, a choice of seasonal vegetables and British desserts. Dhs150 (water included). Sat 6.30pm-10.30pm. Ongoing. Dubai Marina Yacht Club, Dubai Marina (04 362 7934).
Blue Jade The ‘sushi-licious’ deal at this Pan-Asian spot offers unlimited Japanese delicacies. Dhs100 per person (food only). Dhs180 (Japanese mixed beverages). Daily 5pm-7pm. Ongoing. The Ritz-Carlton Dubai, Dubai Marina (04 318 6150).
Casa de Tapas At ‘paella Mondays’, enjoy unlimited quantities of this Spanish rice delicacy. Dhs80 per person. Dhs99 (glass of Spanish grape beverage). Mon 7pm-midnight. Ongoing. Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club, Deira (04 416 1800).
Dunes Café Indulge in unlimited Boston lobster, prepared using styles such as grilled or curried. Dhs235 (soft drinks). Dhs315 (house beverages). Thu 7pm-midnight. Ongoing. Shangri-La Hotel, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai (04 405 2703).
Ewaan The Arabian night special on Wednesdays includes a variety of Middle Eastern treats, appetisers, and main courses. Entertainment includes a henna artist, belly dancer and live performances by a qanoon player and tanurah dancer. Dhs250 (food only). Wed 7pm-11.30pm. Ongoing. The Palace, Downtown Dubai (04 428 7806).
House of Curry Unlimited Indian food for a business lunch. From Dhs45 per person. Sun-Wed 12pm-3pm. Ongoing. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard, Downtown Dubai (800 692 8779).
Le Classique Gourmet Tuesdays offers an à la carte selection of French cooking chosen by the chef, as well as desserts from the buffet, and a selection go grape to sample. Dhs205 (food only), Dhs360 (grape), Dhs495 (bubbly). Tue 7pm-10.30pm. Emirates Golf Club, Emirates Hills (04 417 9999).
Mazina Thursday nights offer a rather upmarket version of surf and turf, serving all you can eat steak and/or sushi. Dhs180 (sushi or steak only). Dhs265 (steak and sushi). Thu 7pm-11pm. The Address Dubai Marina (04 436 7777).
Pachanga The unlimited Brazilian churrasco night includes five different barbecued meats on skewers, plus buffet sides, salads, and desserts. Dhs195 per person. Wed 6.30pm-11.30pm. Ongoing. Hilton Dubai Jumeirah Resort, Dubai Marina (04 318 2530).
Shanghai Chic At this unlimited tasting night, order as many plates of Asian inspired cooking as you like. Dhs188 (food only). Dhs288 (house beverages). Tue-Sun, 7pm-11pm. Ongoing. Mövenpick Hotel Ibn Battuta Gate, adjacent to Ibn Battuta Shopping Mall (04 444 5613).
The Talk Restaurant The ‘southern comfort’ night offers southern Europe indulgences from Portugal, France, Spain, and Italy. Dhs165 (soft drinks). Dhs195 (house beverages). Free for children 12 and under. Sat 6.30pm-11pm. Until September 30. Mövenpick Hotel, Jumeirah Beach, JBR (04 449 8888).
Yuraku Izakaya This Japanese lounge and karaoke bar offers all-you-can-eat. Dhs149 (house beverages). Thu-Fri and Mon 7pm-midnight. Ongoing. Asiana Hotel, Salahuddin Road, Deira (04 238 7777).
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Kobonaty Oct 30, 2014 12:16 pm
I am searching best dinner buffets in DUbai. Thanks for this article... But i want to know cost of these buffets and is there any discount vouchers is available on kobonaty. Please help me to have a great dinner buffet with my family.. Thanks