After an incredible Dubai Food Festival 2021 which ran from March 25 to April 17, the curtain has come down on the eighth edition of the annual city-wide celebration of food. The festival highlighted Dubai’s burgeoning food scene with a jam-packed 24-day programme of experiences and dining concepts that showcased why Dubai deserves its global reputation as a true foodie destination.
This year, the city-wide festival saw more than 1,500 restaurants involved, serving as a platform for visitors and residents alike to experience the city’s diversity of gastronomic excellence and world-class dining venues.
A highlight of DFF with a calendar of exclusive dining experiences, Dubai Restaurant Week featured specially curated 3 course dinner or 2 course lunch menus at incredible prices across the city at more than 40 of Dubai’s top restaurants including COYA, Bread Street Kitchen, Hakkasan, Toro Toro, Nobu, and more.
Speaking on the impact of Dubai Restaurant Week, Kevin Joshi, Group Head of Marketing & Communications at Passion F&B (Carnival by Tresind) says: “Dubai Restaurant Week has been amazing for us after a really difficult year. It has really given us a great boost within the team and also in regards to new customers. We wish we could do it more often in the year.”
Providing the city’s F&B industry with support throughout the 24-day event, Dubai Restaurant Week alone saw over 12,000 bookings – a 30% average increase across participating restaurants.
Foodie Experiences was back for another year with a curated list of 25 unique, one-of-a-kind food adventures across Dubai including chefs’ tables, masterclasses with culinary heroes as well as special promotions at the city’s best restaurants.
For those looking to celebrate home-grown creativity and cuisine, DFF’s ‘Made in Dubai’ list showcased the city’s entrepreneurial foodie spirit. The cosmopolitan line-up for 2021 included an array of choices from Emirati-owned cafés to venues created by renowned international restaurateurs – with every single one of the 20 participating businesses born and bred here in Dubai.
A key facet of Dubai as a global food destination is the range of hidden gems, and with a list of more than 30 spots discovered across the city surprising and delighting diners in equal measure, residents with an eye for unique, independent and budget friendly eats were spoiled for choice this DFF.
An incredible range of prizes were also up for grabs with DFF’s ‘Dine & Win’ promotion at 1000 outlets across the city, in partnership with Zomato, included the chance of winning a three-month Zomato Pro membership as well as the grand prize, a GAC GS3 SUV.
The Home Edition promotion returned for its third year and offered shoppers in the city the chance to win a years’ worth of groceries across 41 locations from selected hypermarkets including Waitrose, Spinneys, Al Maya, Lulu-Hypermarket and Union Coop when they spent AED 250 or more.
Foodcations, a new addition for 2021, provided not just a great stay but also amazing food – all in one place. The Meydan Hotel, Bab Al Shams Desert Resort, Armani Hotel Dubai, and Grand Hyatt Dubai, among others offered one of a kind foodie staycation where guests could experiences private cooking classes, Chef’s Table dinners or the chance to dine at some of the best restaurants located at hotels in the city.
Foodies across the city sampled the city’s best tea blends and shined a spotlight on local favourites by selecting the top 10 Karak Chai cafes in Dubai.
After a hugely successful DFF, the festival draws to a close, leaving foodies in the city with memorable experiences for another year – from trying out ‘once in a lifetime’ dining opportunities including signature dishes, unique ingredients, masterclasses and chef’s tables in partnership with the city’s best restaurants. As well as enjoying appearances by celebrity chefs, cooking competitions, one-time only retail promotions in malls across the city and much more!
All dining experiences, events and activations during DFF followed prevailing safety protocols and social distancing guidelines to ensure a safe experience for all.