After starting out as a coffee roastery specializing in cold brew and craft beverage production, this part roastery, part eatery, part cafe has been wowing passionate coffee drinkers ever since they opened in 2018 at Alserkal Avenue. This proper hipster joint in the arty vicinity of Al Quoz boasts just as much substance as style and has become well known for its super brews and tasty bites. Thanks to their in-house roastery and an extensive menu of all-day breakfasts, you can not only expect a delicious cup of nitro cold brew straight from the tap but also salads, house rotisseried chicken, and mind-blowing brownies.
Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz. www.nightjar.coffee (050 365 1120).
For those in the know, you can attest to how easy it is to overlook this tucked-away hidden gem of a cafe in The Courtyard. This super-cute Aussie-inspired café is the perfect spot for whiling away a day enjoying a lazy weekend breakfast or just grabbing a quick cup of coffee with friends. The café’s delightfully feminine accents, such as floral arches and baby pink colored walls coupled with the smell of freshly brewed coffee, are the most enchanting invite to share a cup of coffee with a hearty lunch. Their menu is simple – and the cheese and garlic toastie is to die for!
The Courtyard, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz. www.bostonlane.com (054 449 2131)
There might not be many places in Dubai that are trendier than Stomping Grounds, especially when it comes to breakfast, no seriously, they’ve got accolades to prove it. Stomping grounds has been awarded Dubai’s best breakfast and highly commended café in 2020 at the Timeout restaurant awards. The highlight at this cozy and homey Australian coffee hub is Specialty Batch Coffee. Each cup of fragrant brew is made from premium single-origin beans that have been sourced directly from homegrown craft roasters. For those desiring a rather customized sampling, you can choose your beans, extraction method, and even the type of milk. You can also savor the flavor of a microlot coffee, a special bean collection picked for its premium quality and intense flavor profile. Or if you aren’t that fussy about your coffee, you can choose from a selection of their signature coffees such as Iced Ginger Coffee, etc. No wonder this cafe is a perennial neighborhood favorite!
Villa 98, Street 12D, Jumeirah. www.stompinggrounds.ae (04 344 4451)
Tom & Serg
This happy and casual café has been a steady fixture on Dubai’s coffee circuit. Having been the former Time Out Dubai Best Café winner, this cafe prides itself on its stylish and trendy industrial interiors, specialty coffees, and gourmet food. Inspired by Melbourne’s independent coffee house culture, Tom & Serg is widely regarded as one of the most laidback dining spots in town that along with serving unpretentious, nutritious, all-day breakfast, also caters to both casual drinkers and coffee connoisseurs alike.
Established by the same guys who founded The Sum of Us, this cafe is named after its founders, Tom Arnel and Sergio Lopez. Tom & Serg, two Dubai-based entrepreneurs, brought in coffee culture to Dubai that hadn’t existed hitherto and paved the way for an exciting cafe scene. The best time to visit this cafe is weekdays, and we suggest that you don’t go off-menu at this large two-floor café as they serve brews created to the owners’ exact measurements, and trust us, they are delicious!
15A Street, Al-Joud Center, Al Quoz. www.tomandserg.com (056 474 6812)
Tucked away in Jumeirah, this part boutique, part coffee shop is inspired straight from the historical origins of the beverage, the ancient seaport of Mokha in Yemen. You see, while the coffee tree was native to Ethiopia, coffee, as a drink, is said to have been first consumed by the Sufi monks of western Yemen in 1450. And just like its modern usage, the Sufi monks used it to help them stay awake during their all-night meditations. The cafe’s Arabic-style decor and communal seating are reminiscent of the old times when people gathered and exchanged stories over coffee; this coffee shop is best suited for an extended visit.
The cafe follows a step-by-step ordering process that begins with choosing your coffee (single origin bean or blends) followed by the brewing method. Their extensive menu covers and carefully explains a huge range of brewing techniques, but if you’re a coffee newbie and all this is too overwhelming, don’t stress because their experienced staff who knows their craft will happily help you choose a drink that suits your taste. Mokha 1450 boasts a range of brewing techniques that include Syphon, Chemex, Gino Pour Over, Aeropress, etc., and their range of coffee includes Yemeni Sabri (Yemeni coffee that is farmed by a cooperative of female farmers), Ethiopian Geisha beans, Jamaican Blue Mountain blends, among many others.
Boutique No.8, Aswaaq Center, Al Badaa, Al Wasl Road. mokha1450.com (+971 4 321 6455)
SAID Dal 1923
This cafe is meant for lovers of ultra-rich and chic European café vibes. This elegant all-day bakery and boutique serves single-origin coffee and drool-worthy desserts such as waffles, doughnuts, babka, crepes, churros, and cookies accompanied by rich, creamy, overflowing onto the saucer hot chocolate. Also, do not miss out on the Italian hand-made single-origin chocolate bars, chocolate breakages, etc., that can be purchased at the on-site chocolate boutique. This boutique is a tribute to the early days of these chocolate artisans on the cobbled streets of Rome.
City Walk, Al Wasl. said.it (+971 4 386 6644)
Forever Rose Cafe
Designed to feel like something straight out of a storybook, the cafe transports its patrons from reality into the world of fantasy. The décor seems to be entirely monochrome complete with white floors, tables, and chairs from afar. But the cafe uses some clever tricks and 2D illustration to fool your eyes into believing that you are part of a drawing, a three-dimensional world made to look like a flat illustration. To complete the illusion, even the cups and the plates are painted monochrome, leaving only the food to add color to the ambiance. No wonder this cafe is one of the most Instagrammable spots in town.
Forever Rose is by no means your standard café, the menu offers a range of uniquely-crafted coffees, croissants, cakes, tarts, mouses, and international cuisine with a Middle Eastern twist.
Box Park, Al Wasl Road, Al Safa. foreverrosecafe.com (+97145484210)
The Sum Of Us Restaurant
The Sum of Us is a little bit of everything: a bakery, a roastery, a gourmet cafe. Coming from a line of highly successful, ultra-cool cafe concepts by Bull&Roo, the cafe serves everything that can be made in-house: from sourdough, fish & chips, and organic burgers prepared by skilled chefs to the piping hot coffee made using beans from an in-house micro-roastery. This cafe is the perfect stop to savor healthy smoothies, juices, and an all-day breakfast made with healthy ingredients and eggs sourced only from free-range hens.
Ground Floor, Burj Al Salam, 6th Street, Trade Centre. Thesumofusdubai.com (+971 56 445 7526)
This boho-chic haven is a hub for healthy living, a healthy café woven into an eclectic concept store designed to make visitors feel as if they were walking into a welcoming home. Comptoir 102 hosts daily yoga sessions and has a strong focus on sustainable, wholesome food made using ingredients responsibly sourced from local organic farms. This chic cafe with subtle french undertones comprises a kitchen, garden, and lounge that offers vegan food and gluten- and dairy-free choices such as a wide variety of coffees & teas made using nut-milk buckwheat pancakes topped with raw chocolate, salads, etc.
Opposite Beach Centre, Jumeirah 1. comptoir102.com (+971 4 385 4555)
A world away from the typical ultra-modern hotel design aesthetic of Dubai, the 14 unique roomed XVA Art Hotel is a fresh fusion of history, art, and heritage. Even if you aren’t checking into the hotel, the XVA Art Cafe with its calming courtyard seating, comfortable lounge divans, or gallery-like indoor space is a worthy addition to your Dubai itinerary. This cafe provides a perfect escape from the cacophony of noises from the streets of Dubai, which transitions into a serene ambiance that offers Middle Eastern-inspired vegetarian dishes such as eggplant burger, coconut-based pumpkin curry, rose water cheesecake, etc. The XVA café is especially popular for its breakfast meals such as Siddiqi omelet, Karama crepe with double date syrup, and hot beverages such as fresh mint tea and Turkish coffee.
XVA Art Hotel, Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood, Meena Bazaar. xvahotel.com (+971 4 353 5383)
Whether you subscribe to the ideology that buying a 20 AED coffee is a worthy symbol of Millennials’ squandered resources or if you feel that the idea of getting rich by buying less is horrible advice, we can all agree that getting a sweet deal on those cafe lattes is mug-nificient, geddit? Use the Hundred app to find brew-tiful deals on your favorite cafes. Okay, that was the last one.