Restaurant Review:
Akibadori

Dubai Design District
​Dubai, UAE

One of our fondest vacations has been to the bustling city of Tokyo in Japan a few years ago and while we cannot wait to head back to the unique, lively nation and further immerse ourselves in its charm and culture; we get extremely excited when we come across anything that reminds us of the place. Our recent tasting was just that; a proper walk down memory lane of our Japan trip but just a stone’s throw away at D3 (Dubai Design District). Replicating the quirkiness, class and simplicity of Tokyo and finding its ideal dwelling at D3, Akiba Dori and its sister restaurants/bar serve up a variety of Japanese delicacies from street food to Ramen bowls, unparalleled cocktails and mocktails and palatable desserts in a setting that took us back to the restaurants we tried in Japan. Tokyo’s renowned multihued and multifaceted Akihabara (Electric Street) is the inspiration behind this food hall style resto-bar. The menu is divided into different categories like salads, specials, street food and baked goods and here’s everything we had:

  • Sashimi Salad: Tuna And Salmon Sashimi, Mixed Green Leaves, Carrots With Apple Ginger Dressing
  • Akiba Rock Shrimps: Served With Spicy Mayo Sauce
  • Chicken Katsu Curry: Crispy Breaded Chicken Served With Rice, Curry Sauce, Dried Seaweed And Japanese Pickles
  • 5 Formaggi: Mascarpone, Semi-Soft Italian Tallegio Cheese, 24 Month Ages Reggiano Parmesan, Gorgonzola, Smoked Provola Cheese, Basil Leaves And Acacia Honey

Desserts

  • Hakata Cheesecake
  • Mozarella & Nutella Taiyaki

Once we got past all the reminiscing and took in the eclectic ambiance, it was time for the food! While the fondness for the Sashimi salad and rock shrimp was unanimous, the Katsu fan amongst us found the curry decent and quite authentic. The pizza, however, divided us! While one of us really enjoyed the amalgamation of cheeses, sweet and savory flavors thanks to the HONEY, the other one didn’t enjoy it too much and thought it to be an acquired taste or just the bias of a huge cheese fan. On another note, the preparation of the Tokyo style Neapolitan pizza is pretty cool; the light dough is prepared daily using the finest Japanese flour and salt and is topped with premium ingredients from Italy. It is then baked in the Japanese wood-fired oven and is ready in just 60 seconds.  We saw the oven in action and it was pretty cool! Heated to about 500 degrees, the pizza is placed in the oven and lo and behold, it is ready before your belly gets the chance to rumble. We paired the meal with delicious cocktails and mocktails that were refreshing in the heat.

Finally, time for desserts! We indulged in the (suddenly) very popular Japanese cheesecake and a treat that we really like, the Taiyaki. A Japanese fish shaped cake that we have eaten filled with custard before and quite enjoyed. However, we tried the Mozzarella and Nutella version at Akiba Dori and we are glad our server suggested we do because it was brilliant! Just writing about the Taiyaki has us wishing we were strolling the streets of Tokyo munching on some right now.

A sort of homage to the hustle and bustle of Akihabara and Tokyo in general, Akiba Dori is the perfect place to unwind, think about a trip to Japan or reminisce about one that you’ve taken (like we did) while feasting on some delicious Japanese treats! The restaurant gets a Yay from us.
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