Iftar is the meal with which Muslims break their daily fast. Traditionally, the fast is broken with dates and a small drink of either water, juice or Arabic coffee, before prayers are undertaken, following which iftar is served. Often, Emirati families put on big evening meals for all their family and friends – you’ll sometimes see iftar tents pop up outside big villas – though many also dine out at the many restaurants around the city. There are hundreds to choose from, some offering Middle Eastern cuisines and buffets, others offering contemporary and fusion twists on a traditional iftar. The meal usually starts with soup – such as shorbat (lentil soup) – before mains are brought out, featuring rice, salads, grilled meats and more, and finally a selection of sweets treats for dessert.
The Peruvian hotspot will be serving up an alternative iftar this Ramadan, focusing on South American and Nikkei-inspired dishes. Expect corn gazpacho, Peruvian bean soup, edamame, grilled prawn and chicken skewers, spicy beef sirloin and more.
Dhs245 per person. Daily sunset-8pm. Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, Jumeirah Beach Road, firstname.lastname@example.org (04 316 9600).
Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira creek
The hotel will be offering a traditional buffet for iftar. It will feature more than 200 dishes across several of the hotel’s restaurants, including Aseelah, winner of our award for Best Middle Eastern restaurant at the 2017 Time Out Dubai Restaurant Awards.
Dhs169 (adults), Dhs80 (kids aged four to 12), free (kids under four). Daily sunset-9.30pm. Baniyas Road, Deira, email@example.com (04 205 7033/7034).
This Turkish restaurant, helmed by Colin Clague, who previously ran Zuma and Qbara, has been making waves for its stunning Anatolian dishes. For iftar, expect a variety of soups, mezze and main courses from an à la carte menu, plus sweet Turkish desserts to conclude the meal, before tea is served.
Dhs195 per person. Daily from sunset. Grosvenor House, Dubai Marina (04 399 9123).
Address Boulevard in Downtown Dubai is taking a communal approach to iftar, with long tables and a set menu of traditional sharing dishes. It’s a great way to experience the community atmosphere during Ramadan in a beautifully decorated ballroom.
Dhs250 per person. Daily sunset-9pm. Address Boulevard, Downtown Dubai (04 561 8888).
Time Out Dubai’s iftar at Ewaan
Time Out Dubai and Palace Downtown have teamed up to put on a stunning spread of dishes for iftar in the renowned Ewaan Ramadan Tent on Monday May 29. Enjoy a buffet of traditional dishes including grilled meats, hot and cold mezze and classic Middle Eastern desserts, as well as refreshing salads and juices. Time Out Dubai readers get an exclusive rate of Dhs195 when booking in advance. Just quote TODPalace when making your reservation.
Dhs195 per person (Time Out Dubai reader offer). Mon May 29, 7pm-9pm. Palace Downtown, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard, Downtown Dubai, firstname.lastname@example.org (04 428 7951).
During the Ramadan, Muslims will wake up before sunrise for a family meal, suhoor, before the day of fasting begins. At restaurants, these are usually served as set menus or à la carte, and begin after iftar ends. Timings vary, with some ending in the early hours of the morning, and others running until sunrise.
Suhoor dishes from BOCA include bread, olives and dates, plus soup, grilled prawns, caprese salad, gnocchi with braised beef short rib, grilled vegetables and more.
Dhs175 per person. Daily 9pm-sunset. Gate Village 6, DIFC (04 323 1833).
This colourful Beirut-import offers excellent classic Lebanese and Arabian dishes for suhoor, either à la carte or from a set menu. Try foul, balila and hot, freshly made saj, as well as desserts and pastries from the live station.
Dhs100 per person. Daily 9pm-3am. City Walk, Al Safa Street (04 343 2707).
This Downtown restaurant boasting Dubai Fountain views is offering a set menu for suhoor, featuring authentic Turkish dishes such as findik lahmacun (Turkish flatbread-style pizza), beğendili kebap (lamb cubes on a bed of aubergine purée) and baked rice pudding firin sütlaç for dessert.
Dhs260 per person, free for kids under six. Daily 10pm-3am. Souk Al Bahar, Downtown Dubai (04 554 0700).
Head down to this lavish Four Seasons Resort Dubai venue for an à la carte suhoor of Arabian dishes, including a delicious stone-baked manakish. Refreshing traditional juices will also be on offer, and there will be a shisha area, too.
Dhs190 per person. Daily 10pm-2am. Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, Jumeirah Beach Road (04 270 7803).
The Courtyard at Manzil Downtown
This late-night suhoor is a traditional experience, with an à la carte menu of dishes for suhoor, as well as shisha, plus, guests will be able to take part in games including backgammon and cards.
Prices vary. Daily 10pm-6am. Manzil Downtown, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard (04 423 8899).