Time Out Dubai Restaurant Awards 2013 details - Timeoutdubai.com


Nominated for Best Indian 22 Comments

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A typical mall eatery in many ways, Zafran is a convenient spot that serves satisfying food pretty quickly. Oh, you want value too? Well, that depends on what time you want to eat. The business lunch menu is excellent value, while being just as filling and tasty as the à la carte fare. Come for dinner and you’ll still get all the other positives, but now you are paying prices you might expect from somewhere a bit fancier. Dine on the impressive terrace overlooking the marina, weather permitting, but be warned; it can be difficult to catch the eye of a waiter from an outside table. Tuck into creamy dal and excellent chicken kebabs that are moist and nicely marinated. An excellent lunch venue that doubles as a decent dinner stop-off for shoppers who are yearning for good Indian food and don’t mind paying a bit of a premium for convenience.
Open Sun-Wed noon-10.30pm; Thu-Sat noon-12.30am. Dubai Marina Mall, Dubai Marina, Dubai (04 399 7357).

By Time Out Dubai staff
Time Out Dubai,

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Posted by: Shirad Salaheddine on 02 Feb ' 15 at 10:42

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

The Dubai Marina branch became terrible!! We are regular customers at Zafran and we always enjoy the hospitality and a good meal. However, this past weekend everything changed. The food is still good but their hospitality reflected its true image! The Indian waiter was disrespectful, pushing us to order meals we don't want and indirectly forcing us to order drinks. My wife took her time to decide what she wanted, meanwhile the waiter was ticking his pen very fast showing signs of impatience. When we told him to stop and give us couple of minutes, he aggressively left us. I told a second waiter I don't want the other one to serve our table and that the manager needs to be notified of his behavior. The waiter told the manager, who did not seem to care! After several minutes, he approached us and asked if the food is good!! I was disappointed, but we let him know about the incident. However, he said 'sorry' and quickly left! The other waiter, kept coming and going, pretending to be in rush, and clicking his pen a dozen of time per second. It was really annoying and disappointing!

Posted by: Mark Johnson on 08 Dec ' 14 at 05:20

The food is pretty poor when it comes to standards, The worst Chicken Tikka I have ever had. We paid AED 230 for one butter chicken, two naan and one mixed grill (without fish), two drinks (water and a coke). Aside from the high price, the chicken was of very poor quality and dry as heck. Probably cooked, taken out of the tandoor, and then finished off when a guest ordered it. Pier 7, right next to this location, offers much better food, ambiance and value for money. I read an article prior to visiting this place where the reviewer wrote that this was a Michelin star restaurant in a mall....this person had obviously never been to a Michelin star eatery!
There are much better places in Dubai to eat Indian food!!!

Posted by: JohnB on 19 Jan ' 14 at 14:58

Eaten here a couple of times. The food is quite good, although portions are not huge but adequate. However, meanness seems to have crept in, they are serving 300 ml cans of Pepsi/Diet Pepsi instead of the standard 330 ml. I refused to order a second, even though one was not quite enough. To be honest, I felt this pennypinching takes the egde off the place, and in future will not go back , but will make the slightly longer trip to the truly excellent Asha at Wafi Mall for any Indian lunchtime cravings I have.

Posted by: divya on 09 Jan ' 14 at 12:39

I went to Zafran on Christmas eve. I was very unhappy with the service we received I won't fault the chefs s food was very tasty but it did cold as our naans didnt arrive for 20 mins and we had to leave our seats and ask staff to get them for us. When we were leaving nobody apologised to us. VERY BAD CUSTOMER SERVICE.

Posted by: Herman on 11 Apr ' 13 at 12:15
  • Best for: Family friendly

Zafran is my favorite Dubai restaurant. Great dishes, friendly staff and a wonderful view over the marina. I enjoy it every time.

Posted by: Natalya on 17 Mar ' 13 at 10:17
  • Best for: Family friendly

Love outside terrace with romantic lamp looking at marina.

Posted by: Arthur on 13 Mar ' 13 at 07:07
  • Best for: Family friendly

Perfect place

Posted by: Narasimha on 12 Mar ' 13 at 11:15
  • Best for: Family friendly

Great food, veg options could be more

Posted by: Mahesh Krishnan on 12 Mar ' 13 at 11:01
  • Best for: Family friendly

One of the best restaurant in Dubai I've been. Very good service from the service staff and quality & taste of food is really appreciable!!

Ambience in the terrace is really amazing specially in winters with a very good view to Dubai Marina.

Not much expensive and is worth spending money.

I really would like to spend time with my family and friends here.

Posted by: Raqib Islam on 12 Mar ' 13 at 10:27

Couple of days back me and my wife wnt to Zafran for a dinner, way we were welcome and sitted was so impressive and apart from the service even the Food was also amazing,
I recomend if you are looking for a good indian restaurant with great service and food, definaetly Zafran is the place you should be going to,

Posted by: Firoz Babu on 12 Mar ' 13 at 10:13
  • Best for: Family friendly

Amazing ambience, good food and excellent service. I will be going back again and again.

Posted by: Vinoth Kumar on 11 Mar ' 13 at 08:20
  • Best for: Business lunch

Best location, beautiful ambience and tasty but light food.

Posted by: Claudia on 11 Mar ' 13 at 05:51
  • Best for: Romantic

Excellent service,location & food!!! I really like this restaurant!!!

Posted by: waheeda shah on 10 Mar ' 13 at 19:44
  • Best for: Family friendly

an excellent restaurant with excellent staff and food

Posted by: Aisling on 08 Sep ' 12 at 09:04
  • Best for: Romantic

Been to the Marina Mall venue several times and never disappointed, great place to have a nice casual dinner. Lovely food and nice staff. And the view from the terrace is a bonus!

Posted by: Alison hrgarty on 24 Aug ' 12 at 20:38
  • Best for: Romantic

I had the best curries I've ever had in my life tonight in Zafran ( and I've had a few good curries) fish curry and Saag gosht. Could not fault any part of the meal - it was sticking out - fresh ginger, coriander, coconut, cardamom, all delicately evident and expertly blended. Just needed a beer and it would have been perfect.

Posted by: Sian on 02 Jun ' 12 at 05:46
  • Best for: Family friendly

We had no intention of eating Indian food and then spotted Zafran in the Mall. I am so pleased we did because the meal we had was outstanding and fantastic value. The starters were light and beautifullzy spiced, the curries had the most amazing depth of flavour.

The service was courteous and efficient. We will definitely go back. The best Indian meal we have eaten in Dubai so far.

Posted by: Expat on 24 May ' 12 at 16:50

My husband and I have just ordered a delivery from Zafran, we had the Lamb Shank Rogan Josh which had a very pungent taste - could not smell Rogan and there was no sign of Josh either!!! Did not resemble a curry in any shape of form. The Butter Chicken was inedible, turned up with only 4 pieces of chicken all of which were not even cooked properly.
AED 180 later we're now sat here waiting for our 2nd dlivery of the night, and not from Zafran!

Posted by: KB on 21 May ' 12 at 10:01

Having heard a lot about Zafran, we visited it a couple of Friday's ago. It started off badly, while making the reservation. The restaurant manager was very insistent that we tell him in advance whether we wanted to sit inside or outside as the restaurant extremely full that evening. When we turned up, only 2 tables were occupied inside and only 50% full outside on the patio.
After ordering starters and drinks, we were enjoying the excellent view from the terrace. Starters were quite good to be fair.
After ordering the main courses, again the staff seemed to be lost and not very helpful. Food took a while to come in which was not a problem as the weather outside was excellent. But when it did come in it was very disappointing. The paneer makhanwala was extermely sweet. The mixed vegetable was ok..nothing to rave about and the black and yellow dal was again run of the mill. Veg biryani was good. When we wanted to order some extra nan's and dal, we had to wait for nearly 7-8 minutes, before our waiter came by. Only when I spoke to the manager, service improved slightly.
Not exactly the sort of service and food that I expected from the highly publicised restaurant.
Better Indian food is definitely available at other restaurants in Dubai.

Posted by: Mukesh Mandalia on 20 Mar ' 12 at 13:28
  • Best for: Family friendly

Lick the plate clean type of food, amazing flavours and taste can't wait to take my wife there. You are made to feel special and they look after you.
Give this a bash you wont regret it

Posted by: Razena Schroeder on 13 Mar ' 12 at 13:05
  • Best for: Business lunch

I have been to this branch on four occasions since it opened, and every time the food and service improves. On the first visit I was tempted to ask 'where is the Indian food' because although the names and ingredients are typical of Indian dishes it did not taste authentic... underseasoned without any bite, almost as if it had been cooked by a chef who had never tasted authentic Indian food and had cooked it from a recipe without the proper spices.

Fortunately, a friend invited me to lunch and chose to go to Zafran. I don't regret giving them the benefit of opening blues and going back because they have improved tremendously with both food taste and service. Last night I even felt a gentle sting of chili heat on my tongue from the chana masala in the starter.

Posted by: Niket on 02 Mar ' 12 at 02:32
  • Best for: Romantic

Great taste + view
good for vegetarians too


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