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Food trail: From Global Village to the cities

The success stories of five restaurants that made their UAE debut at the annual fair and now have branches across the country

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Bundoo Khan

Pakistani
Year of launch: 1997

The popular Pakistani restaurant opened its first UAE outlet at the Global Village 20 years ago – the same year the anuual shopping fair was launched. Following its success at the village, it opened two outlets in Dubai: one in Deira and the other on Shaikh Zayed Road. “The village is a great platform for restaurants because of the huge visitor turn-out. Every year we get the opportunity to serve authentic Pakistani food to visitors from all over the world,” said Adnan Khan, CEO.

 

Dutch Mini Pancakes

Dessert
Year of launch: 2013

Owners of Dutch Mini Pancakes could not have found a better venue to open its first UAE outlet than the Global Village. “It has been an amazing springboard into the UAE and the rest of the world for us. We were one of the highlights of EXPO 2015 in Milan, something that would not have been possible if we had not won the Best Retail Award in Global Village,” said Tomek Aalders-CEO.

The last four years, owners of Dutch Mini Pancakes have opened a restaurant in Aswaaq Mall, Al Bada’a. “We also take part in events such as OTB Market, Modhesh World, Taste of Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Throughout the year we are busy running pop-up kiosks across UAE,” said Aalders.

 

3D Burger

Fast Food
Year of launch: 2013

Within a month of making its debut at the Global Village, owners of 3D Burger opened an outlet in Sharjah and another one in Ajman six months later. “Every year we have a kiosk at GV and it has been a huge learning experience for us,” said Aoof Abdulrahman Ali, CEO of the company.

 

Papa Junior

Thai
Year of launch: 2007

This Thai eatery whcih started out as a kiosk is now a stand-alone restaurant at the Global Village. Not only that, it now has eight other outlets – four in Dubai, two each in Sharjah and Ajman. There are plans to open one in Ras Al Khaimah too. “Our expansion is a testament to how successful our journey has been at Global Village,” said Waleed Al-Hosani-CEO, Papa Junior.

 

Nattas Café

Portuguese
Year of launch: 2015

Renowned for its Pastel de Nata, a popular pastry introduced in the 18th century in Lisbon, the café first came to the village two years ago. Besides pastries, it also serves authentic Portuguese cuisine. Taking cue from the overwhelming response at the village, the restaurant owner has opened two more outlets in Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. “We’ve also launched ‘Nattas Bikes’ (delivery service) across locations like Emirates Golf Course, Kite Beach and other locales in Dubai,” said Pedro Franco, director operations.

 

This year’s debutants

Raclette DXB

The Raclette DXB serving its traditional namesake cheese dish is a hit at Global Village. There is no dearth of drama and flavour at this stall. A gigantic wheel of cheese – imported from Switzerland - is heated up to melting point. The cheese is then scraped on a plate of baby potatoes, cornichon pickles and rocca leaves. Don’t be surprised to see this flavour-packed restaurant coming up across the UAE.

Don’t miss: Raclette DXB

 

Spheerz

This is a restaurant from Osaka, Japan serving authentic Far Eastern street food. One of the popular dishes served here is Takoyaki – a sphere-shaped snack made of bite-sized doughballs mixed with spring onion, red pickle ginger and a dash of soy sauce. For the filling, you can pick from a choice of octopus, prawn and chicken.

Don’t miss: Takoyaki

 

Yuki no Hana

This Japanese dessert specialist takes you back to childhood. If you drooled over candy floss and ice-creams – here is a chance to get both in one dessert called Cloud Ice-cream. First you put the cotton candy and then dress it up with ice-cream. Costing just Dh25, this dessert tastes as good as it looks. The Japanese kagigori and Hokkaido cheesecake are some of the other interesting things to look out for.

Don’t miss: The Cloud ice-cream

 

Flamin’ Pumpkin

Dazzling drinks, myriad fruity mocktails, fiery pumpkin milkshakes – this flashy joint gets a smile on everyone’s face. Get your phones ready to capture how they execute their concept of making an ice cold, smoky, bubbling effect on your drinks.

Don’t miss: The Zombie

 

Yalla Kaak

There is no dearth of authentic Lebanese food outlets in the UAE. And here is another one. From thin crispy breads to slices of steak and shawarma, there’s plenty of choice here for any foodie.

Don’t miss: The sesame-seed wrapped shawarma

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