Looking for an unforgettable dining experience in Abu Dhabi? In a city known for its opulence and grandeur, the restaurant scene is nothing short of extraordinary. But if you’re looking to take your taste buds on an adventure that goes beyond the ordinary, we’ve got you covered. From cultural fusions to unexpected culinary twists, we’ve curated a list of the 15 most unique restaurants in Abu Dhabi that offer experiences you won’t find anywhere else.
Table of Contents
1. Aptitude Cafe & Eatery
Aptitude Cafe is not just another eatery; it’s a tucked-away treasure. Here you can feast on an extensive range of mouth-watering dishes, from main courses to breakfast specials. Located with a backdrop of the museum and shimmering sea, it’s a feast for your eyes as well. Once you’re done touring the museum and snapping pictures, this cafe is the ideal spot to refuel. Don’t leave without trying their standout Thai vegetable curry and the classic Eggs Benedict.
2. Boomah, The Owl Café
Boomah Cafe in Abu Dhabi is unique for its nine resident owls. For a ticket price of Dhs70, visitors can learn about and even hold these birds under expert supervision. The cafe’s owner, Mohamed Al Shehhi, emphasizes that the owls’ wellbeing is their top priority. Some of these owls can’t live in the wild, making the cafe their permanent home. Besides the owl experience, the cafe serves tasty dishes like acai bowls, milkshakes, and coffee. You can also enjoy a drink while watching the owls if you prefer not to interact with them.
3. Fresh Basil (Dining In The Dark)
Fresh Basil in the UAE is catching the eye of food enthusiasts with its “Dine in the Dark” experience. In a room with no light, you enjoy a three-course meal over a span of 60 to 90 minutes. The restaurant has a seating capacity of 20 people per session. As you eat in pitch-black conditions, waiters with night vision goggles assist you. The unique setup allows you to engage with fellow diners to guess the flavors of the food you’re eating. When the experience ends, the lights are turned on to reveal the dishes you’ve just enjoyed.
4. EL&N London- Yas Bay Waterfront
If you love all things pink and sparkly, EL&N London at Yas Bay Waterfront is a unique place to go. Opened in July, this cafe is a pink paradise. Not only does it offer delicious pastries and food, but it also has some of the most picture-perfect interiors around. It’s the ideal spot for anyone looking to add a splash of color to their Instagram feed.
5. Les Dangereux
If you’re in Abu Dhabi and looking for a unique dining adventure, check out Les Dangereux. Located at Mamsha Al Saadiyat and led by Executive Chef James Soo Yong Kim, this place is a game-changer. The interior is both cozy and elegant, featuring arched mirrors, gold details, and comfy ivory chairs. And the view? You’ll get a glimpse of the beautiful beach through floor-to-ceiling windows. But the real showstopper might be the open kitchen, where you can see the chefs at work. Forget the usual starters, mains, and desserts—Les Dangereux serves a tasting menu that mixes French culinary traditions with international flair. The result is a unique, experimental dining experience you won’t want to miss.
6. Love Vibe
If you’re a fan of pink and in Abu Dhabi, you’ll want to add Love Vibe to your must-visit list. This eatery, which also has a location in Dubai, is a haven of pink decor. Even the food here has a pink twist, like their pink mini burgers. Adding to the charm is the seating area, which is both classy and sprinkled with green plants. Make sure you try their visually stunning pink Rose Milk Cake for dessert. It’s a spot you won’t want to miss.
If you love Japanese and Korean food, you’ll want to check out Ba:TE by Wawa Dining in Abu Dhabi. Located in the Anantara Eastern Mangroves Abu Dhabi Hotel, this restaurant offers dishes inspired by nature. The setting is stylish, making it the perfect spot for enjoying a blend of Japanese and Korean flavors.
8. Forever Rose Cafe
If you’re a fan of storybook themes, Forever Rose Cafe is a must-visit. The moment you step in, it’s like entering a drawing, thanks to its unique and Instagram-worthy decor. The atmosphere is warm and inviting with soft music and comfy seats. It’s an ideal spot for a relaxing coffee or delicious dessert. Don’t miss out on their signature rose-infused latte and pistachio milk cake, both of which are unique and tasty.
9. Erth Restaurant AlHosn
If you’re looking to try Emirati food with a twist, head to Erth at Qasr Al Hosn. Located next to the Cultural Foundation, the restaurant itself is a feast for the eyes, especially the outdoor terrace overlooking a water feature. It’s particularly stunning at sunset. The menu is groundbreaking, blending traditional Emirati spices and dishes into new creations, all sourced from local produce. If you can only try one dish, go for the Margooga ravioli. It packs classic Emirati flavors into an Italian favorite.
Address: North Parking, Qasr, Hamdan Bin Mohammed St ,Al Hisn ,W3, Abu Dhabi | https://www.instagram.com/erth.alhosn/
If you’re in the mood for a cozy and cheerful spot, this café is a must-visit. With its bright white walls and marble tables, it grabs your attention right away. Pops of color from oversized flower vases and modern wall art make the space even more inviting. Linen and wooden armchairs, along with vintage plant décor, add warmth to the café.
But the real star here is the dessert menu. From tiramisu and caramel millefeuille to unique treats like fig and cardamom tart, the options seem endless. With more than 30 desserts on display, you’re sure to find something to satisfy your sweet tooth.
11. BB Social Dining
BB Social Dining at the Rosewood is a trendy spot that’s new to Abu Dhabi’s dining scene. It’s a place where creative design meets mouthwatering food. The restaurant serves a mix of Bao, Bowls, Bites, and BBQ, each dish full of unique flavors. To round off your meal, they offer a range of fun and eye-catching desserts. It’s a fresh addition to the city’s food landscape and a must-visit for anyone looking for something different.
12. Chuck & Frida
Food Hall Chuck & Frida is a must-visit in Abu Dhabi if you’re after variety. It’s like a global food market under one roof. You can indulge in Canadian poutine with cheese curds, grab a classic New York-style hot dog, or savor Italian meatballs. The place also serves burgers, poke bowls, and traditional Vietnamese baguettes. If you’re a fan of street food from around the world, this is your spot. And if you love Vietnamese cuisine, you’re in for a treat; it’s top-notch here.
13. Karaz Restaurant Yas Mall
Karaz is a new addition to Yas Mall, and it brings the flavors of the Levant to Abu Dhabi. Specializing in dishes from Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and Palestine, the restaurant offers a modern take on traditional recipes. The name Karaz, meaning cherries, symbolizes joy, love, and happiness in the Levant, and you can feel this vibe throughout the restaurant. From its menu to its decor featuring Arabic typography, the place radiates authenticity and cultural richness.
Address: The Fountains at Yas Mall, Yas Island ,Abu Dhabi | https://www.instagram.com/karazrestaurantauh/?hl=hr
14. Terra Eatery
Get ready for a culinary journey at Terra Eatery’s new spot in Al Qana. This local favorite is extending its rustic charm and Mediterranean tastes to this waterfront location. Here, diners will enjoy classic Terra dishes like arrabbiata, smoked eggplant, and sticky date pudding. The mocktail menu also features favorites, including the Cucumber Yuzu Sour. With views of the canal, Terra Eatery aims to offer a new and exciting dining experience.
15. Grand Beirut
For a one-of-a-kind dining experience in Abu Dhabi, check out Grand Beirut. This place brings the vibrant culture of Beirut to life, serving up delicious Lebanese dishes in an inspiring setting that mixes modern style with classic Middle Eastern flair. From mezzes to grilled meats, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped right into the heart of Lebanon.