In Dubai, you can eat for less

island restaurant

My husband “discovered” this restaurant some years back while wandering around the vicinity while we wait for our turn to vaccinate Benjamin at a government health clinic in Qusais area. He was curious. The place is always teeming with diners, mostly locals who live nearby. It’s always full after prayer time with the mosque nearby.

The diners are all men.


I pretended to take a selfie so I can show them to all of you. These men in the background in the below photo are playing cards at 9 am!

locals playing cards in the background

It was Friday and the husband said we’d drive up to the eatery to have breakfast. There is no McDonald’s breakfast for this family! Benjamin and I have finished eating (we wake up very early even on Fridays or holidays) so it was only Pristine and her dad who were hungry.

island food

The husband asked for his “usual” order – 3 parathas (flat breads), keema curry (minced lamb curry with green peas), egg omelette (not pictured), water, chai (Indian milk tea), Pepsi (because he can get away with having soda for breakfast! Horror, I know!) and a strawberry milk  drink for Benjamin. Pristine and her dad ate their breakfast with gusto while I took photos around.

Benjamin popular

I think because the usual diners (mostly elderly men) are not used to seeing kids there, Benjamin was instantly popular. So many of them want to have a piece of him, he he.  I mean, who could really blame them? 

cute kid

This. Kid. Is. Adorable. And yes, I am the mother so totally not biased there.

This restaurant seem to operate for 24 hours or maybe oddly until late, late night because he said he went there at 3am to have some food when all else were closed after his night shift at work.

He boasted of the inexpensive fare. How at a very cheap price he can be full and satisfied (both tummy and pocket!). This is Dubai – where everyone thinks everything is expensive. But this goes to show that there are places that can feed you if you only learn where and if you’re not choosy. After all, food is food. And this, this is better than the fake food at McDonalds!!

Our bill was 16 dhs (US$4).

Dubai Health Authority constantly checks the health and hygiene standards of these cafeterias so they should be ok  and it was clean.

We left around 10 am when it was already too hot. I don’t know if the men were still sitting outside playing cards or chatting but the looks on Benjamin’s face says we needed to head on to somewhere with aircon!


  1. Interesting story. I’m new to Dubai, and I’m doing my best to learn as much as I can as fast as I can. Your blog, and this particular article about eating for less, is very helpful.



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