A Taste of Culture: Discovering Dubai's Top Emirati-Run Cafes

A Taste of Culture: Discovering Dubai's Top Emirati-Run Cafes

Experience the authentic essence of Emirati culture and hospitality by exploring Dubai's finest Emirati-run cafes. Offering a blend of traditional flavors and contemporary twists, these establishments exude warmth and authenticity.

Here are our top picks for immersing yourself in Emirati charm through coffee and cuisine.

To The Moon & Back

To The Moon & Back — Designani

'To The Moon & Back' café, located on Al Athar Street in Jumeirah, is renowned for its owner Zainab Al Mousawi's profound passion for coffee, reflected in its space-themed decor. Inspired by Australian café culture, the café serves coffee sourced from a Melbourne roastery. Patrons can enjoy light bites and all-day toasted sandwiches, including a popular pastrami sandwich from local brand Mattar Farm, amidst a laidback ambiance conducive to unwinding and lengthy coffee discussions.


Brew in Umm Suqeim opens at 6:30 am, making it an ideal spot for early breakfast seekers. Known for its extensive variety of beans sourced from specialty roasters worldwide, Brew caters to coffee enthusiasts with various preparation styles. Paired with a selection of baked goods, patrons can enjoy their coffee in a welcoming ambiance.


Drop, founded by Mahmood Al Khamis and Ghanim Al Qassim, impresses coffee enthusiasts by roasting beans on-site, a growing trend in Dubai. With branches in Dar Wasl Mall and Dubai Mall, Drop provides chic environments to savor specialty coffee like Chemex brews alongside delectable pastries.


Qahwaty offers an authentic Emirati coffee experience with unique offerings like coffee served over cornflakes, showcasing their unconventional approach. With venues in DIFC Gate Avenue, Mirdif 35 Mall, and Al Quoz Pond Park, Qahwaty provides traditional majlis-style seating, ideal for unwinding and socializing.

Dips Café

Dips Cafe, founded by Emirati engineer Rashid Al Hammadi, is a hidden gem in Jumeirah. It features signature dishes made with organic dips molasses and offers a unique coffee blend called Trio. The café's charming decor blends stone and rattan materials for a neutral aesthetic.


Obeli, situated in the upscale City Walk area, was founded by Emirati businesswoman Aisha Al Tamimi. The café features a bright, open space with stylish furniture and a striking fabric ceiling installation. It's designed as a serene escape, ideal for coffee and conversation with friends.

The Espresso Lab

Ibrahim Al Mallouhi's The Espresso Lab, situated in Dubai Design District, features a cool, ultra-minimalist design. With a primary focus on coffee, it has earned high praise from reviewers. Though offering some food, its spacious tables and clean design make it a favored spot for meetings, especially among coffee enthusiasts.

News Source: Khaleej Times

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