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6 awesome business lunch deals in Dubai

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With the probable exception of Dan Bilzerian, Richard Branson or that bloke who was given the caretaker job of a tropical Australian island for a year, we’d wager that everyone would like to spice up the monotony of their working day if they could. Unfortunately, while Dubai may be the land of opportunity, between the archetypal nine-to-six office hours, the mantra is very much to knuckle down and earn your crust.

However, enjoying a good weekday lunch is one indulgence to break up our office life that we can all afford. It also has the added bonus of (hopefully) not getting you fired, unlike, say, bunking off early for a game of golf or popping down to Barasti to catch Sunday’s early Premier League kick-off.

Besides, given the size and scope of Dubai’s culinary scene on your doorstep, isn’t it high time you shrugged off the shackles of the office cafeteria or the deskbound, lukewarm “healthy” wrap?

To that end, ShortList has compiled the business lunches that could help perk up the middle of your day. And, don’t worry – all of them are a friend to the wallet and (for the time conscious) the watch.

Mint Leaf of London – Thali Business Lunch
With sprawling Downtown views and a menu championing some of Dubai’s best Indian cuisine, all available at under AED100, it’s difficult to find fault with this brand of business lunch. Recently the contemporary Asian establishment added a Thali option to its set lunch menu, served on a round platter with a finessed smorgasbord of vegetarian and non-vegetarian plates. We’re not ones to often plump for a non-veg option, but the palak paneer (homemade cottage cheese with fresh spinach puree, seasoned with garlic, and other spices) is glorious. The whole affair is just AED80 for two dishes or AED90 for three. You’ll struggle to find a more economical way to enjoy such premium Indian fare.
Where: DIFC
Price: From AED80, 12pm-3pm
Contact: +9714 453 5417

Zuma – Ebisu Lunch
Given the faultless calibre of its food, and coupled with its prime positioning in the heart of DIFC, it’s of no surprise that Zuma has become one of the most bustling lunchtime venues in the city. And a sizeable chunk of that midday traffic has sat down to take advantage of their excellent Ebisu menu.
Akin to the set-up at Novikov (see top right), guests can enjoy a miso soup, two starters and one main for AED130. The 15-plus option menu boasts some of Zuma’s most popular Asian delicacies, such as sushi and grilled dishes. Alternatively, the wallet-friendly Ebisu Express is available at just AED72 per person, with the miso soup served alongside one main course. And yes, the marinated black cod is on the menu – reason enough to go.
Where: DIFC
Price: From AED72, 12pm-2pm
Contact: +9714 425 5660

Cocktail Kitchen – The Business of Lunch
JLT’s hippest new social corner offers the best value business lunch on our list at AED59 – not far off what you pay for desk-to-cafe quinoa salad. Here, that will get you a starter, a main and a dessert, plus tea or coffee. The structure is simple: a choice of two soups make up the opening acts (the butternut squash broth is a standout), followed by the pick of four mains, with options including a four-cheese lasagne and an excellent sea bream. The options vary every day, so there’s enough variety and value to make this a weekly jaunt.
Where: Jumeirah Lakes Towers
Price: AED59, 12pm-4pm
Contacts: +971 56 828 0727

Fume – Lunch Deal
Pier 7’s comfort-eating hotspot offers two courses in their business lunch. For those on a budget or limited timeframe, a freshly prepared single course is available for only AED39, whereas diners after something a little bigger can double up for AED72 for two dishes plus coffee. If you’re among the latter with some time on your hands, you can’t beat the classic soup and a sarnie – in Fume’s case, a daily broth and smoked turkey and emmental cheese on sourdough toast. If you must limit yourself to one dish, we’d recommend the smoked butter chicken; a great take on the classic Asian dish.
Where:  Pier 7, Dubai Marina
Price: From AED39, 12pm-4pm
Contact: +9714 421 5669

Novikov – Shinakansen
A slick pan-Asian establishment offering a lunchtime set-menu that includes some of the venue’s fantastic signature dishes at a great price. AED125 will get you two starter options (ranging from classic sushi entrées to salmon, duck or wagyu beef tacos) followed up by a generous mains choice encompassing Canadian beef fillet, Singapore noodles and a particularly noteworthy steamed seabass fillet dressed in ginger and soy. If you have the time, a selection of desserts is on offer for only AED35 each. It’s also worth noting that this offer is on Novikov’s table seven days a week, so feel free to return at the weekends when you can take your time and make it last.
Where: Sheraton Grand Hotel
Price: AED125, 12pm-3pm
Contact: +9714 388 8744

The Address Dubai Marina – Plats du Jour
Somewhat tucked away on the ground level of The Address Dubai Marina, Bistro des Arts offers a welcome portion of Parisian charm to the Marina Promenade. And while geared to the lunchtime crowd, BDA’s weekly Plats du Jour (“plates of the day” if you need the translation) have the added bonus of being available all day. Changing daily, expect a characteristic selection of French mains (moules-frites, beef bourguignon and rabbit ragout), which can be paired with either a starter or dessert for AED75, or fill your boots with all three for AED90. Bag a table on the garden style terrace, et voilà – lunch is served.
Where: Marina Promenade
Price: From AED75 daily
Contact: +9714 551 1576

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