Beyond the elsewhere-mentioned Zuma, Dubai is home to a fair few standout Japanese restaurants,including an outpost of Nobu. Better still, TOMO (+971 4 357 7888) at Raffles Dubai, is helmed by chef-owner Chitoshi Takahashi who has devised a vast menu of authentic Japanese delicacies, best navigated with the help of your waiter.
Akira Back was once a professional snowboarder. But since swapping corkscrews for chef whites, the hugely talented Korean has won a Michelin star for the kind of food he serves up at Paru (+971 4 556 6666) on the rooftop of Caesars Bluewaters Dubai: modern Japanese that marries myriad flavours in perfect union. Plump sashimi and a sky high standard of rolls (from the obvious spicy tuna to the inventive 'harmony', a decadent fusion of foie gras, wagyu beef and lobster tempura) set the scene for a meal that delivers time and again before dazzling with a dessert called the lemon — we'll leave the surprise for you. You'll enjoy it all the more from Paru's atmospheric terrace — one of the best al fresco dining spots in the city.
There’s a fun vibe over at Izakaya at JW Marriott Marquis Dubai (+971 4 414
3000). For a start, the so-called Wasabi Girl (she has wasabi coloured hair) makes the head-blowing Japanese mustard at your table. Yet the food is of serious quality; plump, fabulously fresh sashimi and inventive sushi creations are always on the mark.
Position yourself in full view of the live teppanyaki counter at Morimoto Dubai at Renaissance Downtown Hotel, Dubai (+971 4 512 5577), which showcases Masaharu Morimoto's trademark culinary style, with seasonal seafood flown in from markets around the world, including Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji and Fukuoka fish markets.