Top five: The Dubai Food Festival 2014

Top five: The Dubai Food Festival 2014

Calling all tastemakers from February 21 – March 15

Image: Dean Dorat
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Image: Table 9 Dubai
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Image: Nacional Peru

In its first year of activity, The Dubai Food Festival launches on Friday – acting as a 3-week long umbrella event that encompasses many well-known food fairs...

An exciting array of activity is in store as Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment's (DFRE) inaugural Dubai Food Festival rolls into town. A city-wide culinary celebration that brings together some of the Emirate's most popular business and consumer food events - including the well established Gulfood and Taste of Dubai, as well as new initiatives such as the Dubai Food Carnival, Taste of Peru, The Grand Kerala Festival and The Big Grill.

"The inaugural Dubai Food Festival will provide a platform for our partners in the hospitality and restaurant sectors to demonstrate the Emirate's credentials as a leading gastronomy destination," says His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director-General of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, "The quality and range of our culinary offering is something that will increasingly be used as a tourism driver and through the Dubai Food Festival we will demonstrate the variety of offer that exists across the Emirate, including world-class international brands, homegrown restaurants, and high quality street-food."

Running over 23 days, The Dubai Food Festival features a wide range of food-related things to do; tastings, special offers and days out that showcase the city's super diverse food offering – from Michelin starred chefs to culture laden food carts, all in all drawn from the cuisines of more than 200 nationalities.

Buro 24/7 Middle East rounds up a taste of what to expect.

Food dubai festival

Darren Velvick

1. Five star restaurant promotions

When? February 21 - March 15

Where? Across Dubai

Throughout the festival many exclusive, and some more mainstream, restaurants will be creating special set menus to celebrate the festival's inaugural edition – while a number of other venues will enhance the dining experience through signature promotions. Our pick is Table 9's Dubai Food Festival set menu. Based at the Hilton Dubai Creek, it's a contemprary European restaurant with an exciting new chef.

Find a full list of restaurants participating, here.

Food dubai festival


2. Gulfood 2014

When? February 23–27

Where? Dubai World Trade Centre

Gulfood is the world's largest annual food and hospitality trade fair, offering companies, entrepreneurs and professionals the opportunity to interact and share business experiences and insights and conclude deals in the region. Gulfood will feature more than 20,000 brands, 4,500 exhibitors, 120 country pavilions and 80,000 visitors.

Discover more about Gulfood, here


Food dubai festival

Taste of Peru

3. Taste of Peru

When? February 26 – March 1

Where? Souk Madinat Jumeirah

Taste of Peru is a luxury celebration of Peruvian gastronomy combined with entertainment highlighting the South American nation's award winning cuisines and rich culture. Dishes such as ceviche and tiradito, causa, quinotto and empanadas, along with Peruvian juices and the renowned national grape cocktail, will be available for guests to enjoy.

Find out more about Taste of Peru, here


4. Global Restaurant Investment Forum

When? March 11-12

Where? The Conrad Hotel

The inaugural Global Restaurant Investment Forum (GRIF) will bring together members of the restaurant and hospitality sector including investors, hoteliers, owners and lenders and industry professionals across the region to discuss trends and best practices. British celebrity chef Silvena Rowe will be attendance, acting as a key speaker at the event.

Learn about the Global Restaurant Investment Forum, here


Food dubai festival

Taste of Dubai

5. Taste of Dubai

When? March 13–15

Where? Dubai Media City Amphitheatre

The seventh edition of the annual Taste of Dubai celebration will give a fitting finale to The Dubai Food Festival as a whole, set to attract large numbers of foodies with numerous restaurants, activities and entertainment. Taking place over three days, guests can sample signature dishes and get the opportunity to meet internationally renowned chefs – such as famous french chef, Jean Christophe Novelli.


John Buenaventura

We particularly like the sound of The Fairmont Hotel & Resort's BreakSlow concept by Chef John Buenaventura, where fair-goers are encouraged to depart from a hurried lifestyle and start enjoying the simple pleasures in life, starting right from breakfast.

Food dubai festival

Mourad Mazouz

Also present at Taste of Dubai will be Milanese food by Emporio Armani Caffè, award-winning Executive Pastry Chef, Kiran Shivaram Shetty from the Magnolia Bakery and a gourmet experience thanks to ALMAZ by MOMO – a concept by London's famous Sketch restaurant owner, Algerian chef Mourad 'Momo' Mazouz. 

Find out more about Taste of Dubai, here.


The Dubai Food Festival runs from February 21 to March 15