From breathtaking rooftop terraces to charming beachfront eateries.
Al fresco season is finally (finally) here. We know that after the heat of summer, all you want to do for the next five months is soak up the good weather and fresh air, and to be honest, nothing quite makes us as happy as enjoying good food with a cool breeze.
From beautiful outdoor terraces to rooftop views and secret gardens, we’ve rounded up our favorite venues for the best al fresco dining in Dubai. Doesn’t matter what time of day you go – it’s always the right time to enjoy the perfect weather of Dubai winter outside.
Editor’s Note: As we continue to explore and review this ever-expanding culinary landscape, we’ll keep adding to this list throughout the year. Bon Appétit!
At Asia Asia, the atmosphere buzzes with energy as the resident DJ spins catchy beats, enhancing the vibrant dining experience. Perched atop Andaz The Palm, the crowd here is a dazzling blend of locals, tourists, and anyone else lucky enough to stumble upon it. Here, you’re diving into a world of flavors, experiencing a diverse array of hand-crafted dishes and savoring the eclectic tastes of Pan Asian cuisine. Think Black Cod that melts in your mouth, tangy Bluefin Tuna Tartare, and Crispy Aromatic Duck that’s just the right side of indulgent. The place itself is a luxurious maze of globally sourced artifacts, creating an atmosphere that’s both upscale and inviting. As the evening rolls in, the terrace becomes a haven under the stars, the perfect backdrop for those “more dim sums than you planned” kind of nights. As you sit back and become mesmerized by the cityscape, the panoramic view of The Palm and Atlantis adds its own kind of rhythm to the night.
From its breathtaking location at The Address Fountain Views with equally stunning views of Downtown and the Burj Khalifa, friendly service, and warm hospitality, August really knows how to make a good first impression.
The restaurant is divided into three sections: the spacious Dining Room, the speakeasy-style Cocktail Room, and the breezy outdoor Terrace Garden. Each area offers its own unique vibe, but we don’t need to tell you that the to-die-for terrace holds the best seats in the house. Led by August’s Head Chef, Juan Pablo Rey Nores, the restaurant offers French Mediterranean dishes such as tartare cones, wagyu carpaccio, truffle toasts, beef sliders, and the most beautiful charcuterie platters you’ll ever find. When it comes to mains, you don’t want to miss the Lobster Tagliatelle, Sea Bass Papillote, and Steak Frites. Still peckish? Save room for desserts like Caramel Fondant, Crêpes Suzette, and the August Chocolate Dream. You won’t regret it.
Overlooking the lush greenery of the Emirates Golf course, the view at Carine, especially at sunset, is superb. Add to that its fabulous playlist, and it becomes a whole new vibe. Renowned Dubai-based Chef Izu Ani curated the French-Mediterranean menu, so one already knows the food will be exquisite. Before you order anything, make sure you tell your server to place the order for the famous Tarte Tatin – an upside-down apple and caramel tart served with three generous scoops of vanilla ice cream. This is one of Carine’s best sellers, but it takes a while to prepare, so be sure to put your order in right away.
We aren’t regular fans of fried food, but the fried calamari and zucchini are seasoned with special yummy spices, making it truly unique. The wafer-thin onion tart is equally delicious, and we cannot resist the lobster linguine for the main meal. Whether it’s a romantic date night or an evening out with friends, the ambiance and food here will make you want to keep coming back.
When you’re on the terrace of Honeycomb Hifi, a cool breeze might suddenly hit you. It’s then that you realize that behind a bamboo fence, the windows lie open to the city beyond. With a heady mix of fantastic music (with a constantly revolving line-up of world-class DJs), delicious eats, and fresh air, it’s no wonder that Honeycomb Hifi has become Dubai’s favorite winter hotspot. Let’s face it: Honeycomb Hifi is awesome year-round, but there’s nothing that takes the party to the next level, like the feeling of being in your own private world out on the back terrace.
Honeycomb HiFi is more than just a bar or a restaurant; it's a celebration of sound and taste. It's where the music takes center stage, and the food and drinks play a supporting role that could easily steal the show. Ideal for a casual night out with friends or a unique date night, Honeycomb HiFi hits all the right notes. So, whether you're a hardcore music lover or just in it for some good food and vibes, Honeycomb HiFi should definitely be on your radar. Trust us, your ears (and taste buds) will thank you.
Il Borro Tuscan Bistro
If you want to take a trip to Tuscany without having to fly there, there’s no better place than Il Borro Tuscan Bistro, located within the Turtle Lagoon in Jumeirah Al Naseem. Owned by the Ferragamo family, they opened this restaurant outside Italy. The concept is simple – traditional Italian food made from the finest ingredients, accompanied by Il Borro’s products, such as organic extra-virgin olive oil, honey, and selected vegetables from their organic farm in Tuscany. The ambiance is warm and homely and features earthy tones throughout. During the winter, the sunken patio (overlooking the turtle rehabilitation lagoon) opens up for the season.
From the raw menu, we recommend the beef carpaccio. We chose to add the truffle. However, the true highlight of our meal was the homemade tagliatelle with Umbrian black truffle and parmesan, which is undoubtedly one of the restaurant’s finest offerings. Don’t skip dessert; go for the cheesecake – one of the best in town. It’s the perfect combination of tarty and sweet, but make sure everyone orders their own because it’s so good you won’t want to share it.
At LAH LAH, it’s all about blending modern vibes with the irresistible flavors of Asia – no frills, just good food and good times on its newly renovated terrace. Graffiti art and lively patterns pay tribute to the energetic streets of Asian nightlife, creating a vibrant setting that’s perfect for laid-back gatherings and stylish celebrations. With Dubai’s pleasant winter weather on your side, the outdoor seating area sets the stage for relaxed hangouts, where you can soak up the city’s sparkling energy while enjoying catchy beats from the restaurant’s talented DJ acts.
On the menu, you’ll find a variety of Pan-Asian dishes and Asian-inspired drinks, served up in a friendly, approachable atmosphere. From the famous Signature Peking Duck to a fresh selection of baos (yes, including soft shell crab), LAH LAH keeps things fun and flavorful, just the way al fresco dining should be.
Nestled in between the two imposing buildings of the Emirates Towers, the laid-back atmosphere at Ninive offers the best of both worlds. Inspired by a traditional Bedouin tent, this open-air majlis concept, furnished with lush greenery, rich textiles, homey communal areas, and cozy low seats, is a refreshing oasis in the middle of Dubai’s urban jungle of concrete and glass. The ambiance pays homage to Arabesque architecture, while the starlit sky gives it a sense of natural grandeur.
The dining experience at Ninive is a culinary journey through the Middle East and North Africa, with recipes from Iran, Iraq, Turkey, and Morocco. Every single dish we tried — from the starters (zaalouk, chicken durum, and spiced beef kibbeh) to the mains (couscous royal, mix grill, and chicken tagine) and desserts (almond kunafeh and Turkish baklava) — we loved. In a way, Ninive perfectly sums up everything we love about this city: excellent food, friendly staff, and the most beautiful skyline anyone could witness.