Grab a cup of the best artisanal brews
Luckily for coffee connoisseurs, Dubai is home to a whole host of homegrown cafes specialising in 'third-wave' brews. Here's where you can go for your gourmet javas, with everything from lattes and flat whites, to macchiatos and espressos.
The Sum of Us
This artisanal venue is worth seeking out for brews made from beans roasted in-house using hand-crafted equipment. Catch all the action through the show kitchen-style glass walls of the custom roastery and chat with the passionate roast-masters, as you take your pick from their wide selection of coffees - from single-origin espressos to cold-brews (the menu is helpfully coded for newbies). They also have a creatively-crafted food menu featuring fresh and healthy bites, making it the perfect lunch pit-stop.
Burj Al Salam, Trade Centre area
+971 56 445 7526
For a true taste of Dubai, look no further than The Brass, a community hub anchored around third-wave coffee and Arabian culture. Their brewed-to-perfection blends are inspired by the city - try The Deira, made with Ethiopian beans; The Creek, an Arabesque homage with Yemeni beans; and the signature Brass blend, with Malabar beans from India celebrating Dubai's modern multiculturalism. Add an exotic saffron, karak or browned caramel flavour for a sweet treat. They also have a mobile outpost at the Last Exit food truck park and a location at Dubai Marina.
The Outlet Village
+971 55 349 7702
The Espresso Lab
A labour of love by Emirati entrepreneur Ibrahim Al Mallouhi, this cafe and roastery is centrestage in the hip Dubai Design District (d3). Sip on carefully prepared micro-lot varieties (blends of the highest possible grading) sourced from the finest coffee-producing nations in the world. The venue's chic al fresco area is the perfect way to people-watch in the stylish pedestrian mall. The friendly team members are happy to share their know-how.
Unit 8, Building 7, Dubai Design District
+971 4 369 3930
Raw Coffee Company
Veterans of the homegrown cafe scene, Raw roasts organic and beans with Fair Trade approval daily in their warehouse roastery. Staffed by Karthikeyan Rajendran, winner of the 2017 World Cezve/Ibrik Championship (the first World of Coffee title won by the UAE), customers are in good hands as they get to know the roastery. Visitors can take classes on expert preparation or just enjoy some of the 15 single origins and five unique blends at this specialty space. If you're on the run, grab one of their Rocket Fuels to go. The bottle nitro-infused cold brew comes in two strengths, both with flora aromas and a chocolatey finish.
Warehouse 10, Al Manara, Al Quoz
+971 4 339 5474
This indie café in Jumeirah is achingly hip with its coffee crate seats, exposed ceilings and industrial lights. The relaxing space is popular for friendly meetups, with the casual seating made for fitting small groups. Bringing the bean-to-brew ethos to life, here you can custom make your blend, choosing everything from the estate your beans comes from, to the way you'd like it made. A gourmet breakfast menu (plus all-day nibbles too) completes the mix. And to make sure no one feels left out, they do some funky brewed teas too!
12D Street, Jumeirah 1
+971 4 344 4451
Mokha 1450 Coffee Lounge
This is a place for serious aficionados. The sister venue to Mokha 1450's already incredibly popular boutique on Al Wasl Road, it's the first of its kind in Dubai, focusing on incredibly rare varieties and mixology. Here you'll find prized single-origin, fair-trade coffees such as Ethiopian Geisha and grade-one Jamaica Blue Mountain, sourced directly from the farmers. They have a strong community backstory, with the owners working to empower female-run farms in the Middle East and Africa. But if that isn't enough to lure you in - the skillful preparations of the baristas and alluring Arabesque setting certainly will.
Building 8, Golden Mile Galleria, Palm Jumeirah
+971 4 425 4067
With its high-glassed walls, distressed wooden décor and overall industrial aesthetic, this sunny cafe dials up the style quotient in Dubai Design District (d3). On the menu is a wide variety of delectable dishes and some in-style cold brews, including orange twist blend and the vanilla latte, suited to the warmer weather. Catering to the city's trend-setters, the drinks and food alike are beautifully presented in addition to being delicious. It's no wonder, seeing that the chef in charge is Peruvian Roberto Segura, the man behind some of the big-name restaurants in town, including Waka Dubai.
Building 10 Dubai Design District
+971 4 514 9032