Best Seafood restaurants in Dubai
Time Out Dubai is the definitive voice on Dubai's best restaurants, including best seafood restaurant. Here's your guide to getting good seafood in Dubai.
A good selection of fresh fish can be a tricky thing to come by, but we know where in Dubai does shrimp, seabass, scallops and all that jazz best. It’s all in the technique when it comes to serving up something so flexible when it comes to creating top dishes. Time Out has visited each and every restaurant to put their shellfish and more to the test, assessing factors including quality of food, ambience and service. Popular or relatively unknown, we’ve gone undercover to find out what you’re getting for your money at each venue.
Seafood, overlooking the sea to majestic views of the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah? Yes please.
This is a long-standing, go-to romantic spot in Dubai and it never fails to deliver. It has won numerous Time Out Dubai Restaurant awards in the Romantic category in the past, and it again scooped a Highly Commended plaque in 2018.
The rustic wooden venue, located at the end of a jetty and standing magnanimously over the Arabian Gulf, with floor-to-ceiling panes of glass for walls, revealing unrivalled panoramic views, is impressive.
À la carte prices are high – a meal for two excluding drinks can set you back into the thousands of dir-hams. But on there are frequently offers on set menus throughout the year, which are worth re-searching around the time you’re planning to book.
As expected, everything here is slick, from the presentation of dishes to the service. Staff are barely noticeable of an evening, allowing you to enjoy every moment, but rest assured, when you need them, they’ll be there, sharp, and willing to help, no matter your enquiry. Another starter after your main course? No problem. Engagement ring at the bottom of glass of bubbly to be brought out just before the bill? You’ve got it.
The bottom line
Pierchic is a place where memories are made.
There are three things you should know about Ossiano. One, wait for payday because it’s pricey. Two, it’s fancy, so make an effort. And three, it’s pretty much perfect.
Few Dubai restaurants offer a true (arguably classic) fine-dining experience. Ossiano does. The experience is the right side of “stuck-up” (we’ll call it elegant, like the dress code). Expect to be greeted by a dimly lit, impeccably arranged dining room, with a floor-to-ceiling aquarium providing a mesmerising centrepiece.
Staff are pristinely presented, not a shirt wrinkle or ill-fitting collar in sight. The service is intelligent and attentive. Here you’re more than a customer, you’re a lovingly cared-for guest (the restaurant knows this is a place for special occasions).
On our most recent visit, we opt for, and recommend, The Experience Menu, where you choose between four, five and seven courses – whatever you (and your bank) can stomach. You can go à la carte, but why would you? This place is spectacular and you should dive in – face-first.
Once you and your bank manager decide on the number of courses, you’ll be treated to some of the finest seafood and service in the Middle East. Despite a long menu, every dish is a star. Oysters, scallops, cod, foie gras, beetroot ravioli (even the cheeseboard) are all wonderfully balanced, beautifully presented and intricately, expertly described when served.
It’s a magical couple of hours and on reflection there’s only one thing you should know. That is, if we could, we’d eat here every week. It’s that good.
The bottom line
In Dubai we’re lucky to have so many amazing restaurants. And we’re also spoilt in that we have not one, but two restaurants with aquariums inside them. The one at Al Mahara sits in the middle of the room, with tables circling the outside of it. Despite being in the Burj Al Arab the atmosphere is relaxed and warm. The restaurant was relaunched last year with Michelin-starred chef Nathan Outlaw at the helm. Having British seafood expert Rick Stein as his former mentor, you’d expect Outlaw’s pescine knowledge to be above average, and happily it is. On the menu there are plenty of outstanding dishes. Our firm favourite though is the lobster risotto. This is one of Outlaw’s signature dishes, both here and in his UK restaurants, and you can see why. The tender, sweet lobster meat works perfectly with the creamy rice, while the sharpness of orange and spring onion adds some extra zing. It’s a generous portion too, with no scrimping on the lobster meat. It’s on the pricey side, as you’d expect from such an iconic location headed up by a top name chef, but it’s worth it for the quality of food.