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Ramadan iftars embracing Japanese flair around the Arab world

Japanese inspired restaurants around the Arab world are offering intricate Iftar menus for Ramadan. (Instagram/@morisushi_eg)
Japanese inspired restaurants around the Arab world are offering intricate Iftar menus for Ramadan. (Instagram/@morisushi_eg)
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21 Mar 2024 03:03:08 GMT9
21 Mar 2024 03:03:08 GMT9

Arab News Japan

DUBAI: As the holy month of Ramadan unfolds across the Middle East, a unique culinary fusion is taking center stage in the region’s vibrant dining scene. Amidst the traditional rituals of fasting and prayer, Japanese restaurants are offering innovative iftar experiences that blend the flavors of Japan with the cherished traditions of Ramadan.

From bustling metropolises like Riyadh and Dubai to the historic streets of Cairo, Japanese eateries are redefining the Ramadan dining landscape, attracting diverse crowds seeking a fresh perspective on the age-old tradition of breaking the fast.

Here is a look at the Japanese inspired restaurants offering an Iftar menu:

ROKA – Riyadh


Japanese restaurant ROKA has a set iftar menu for ¥7,841per person. It starts with a refreshing drink and a selection of dates to break your fast, followed by a selection of the restaurant’s signature dishes.

The appetizers include a white miso soup with spring onios and seaweed, iceberg lettuce with caramelised onion dressing, beef, ginger and sesame dumplings, salmon nigiri and a sweet potato tempura.

The main course is the diner’s choice of either sea bream fillet, ryotei miso and red onion with steamed rice, or a rice hotpot with Japanese mushrooms, miso butter and shaved truffle.

ROKA also offers a seasonal treat of a special date-flavored mochi.

Sushi Art – Dubai


Sushi Art, an authentic Japanese dining destination, unveiled a new Bento menu to celebrate the season of togetherness and Ramadan.

Sushi Art’s Ramadan menu includes four bento options, including the Mix Bento with shrimp tempura sushi, salmon teriyaki sushi, ebi shrimp sushi, edamame, crispy Kani roll, chicken katsu and plain rice.

The second is a Chicken Lovers bento box, which includes chicken gyoza, chicken katsu roll, chicken teriyaki and vegetable noodles.

For those who enjoy salmon, a Salmon Lovers bento box is also available at Sushi Art, which contains a salmon avocado roll, two salmon sushi, salmon teriyaki and fried rice.

Lastly, a veggie bento box is also available with Midori salad, vegetable gyoza, cucumber sesame roll, vegetable noodles and spicy glazed tofu.

The prices range between ¥2,833 to ¥3,655 yen, depending on the box.

Bushido by Buddha Bar – Bahrain


This Japanese restaurant located in Manama offers diners a unique Iftar menu by combining the classic Arab dishes beside authentic Japanese cuisine.

Their menu starts off with several appetizers such as edamame, rock shrimp tempura, hummus and a classic Arabic Fattoush salad.

The main course offers a mixed Arabic grill platter, Buddha Bar beef tenderloin, seabass sliders and fries and more.

Playing on the Japanese menu offering, several maki rolls are also offered like California rolls, volcano rolls and spicy Arabic rolls, which contains a hint of hummus.

Dessert is a combination of Asian fruits, chocolate cake and Arabic mixed sweets.

The price range is about ¥16,813 per person.

99 Sushi Restaurant & Bar – Dubai


This Michelin-star restaurant is true to its authentic Japanese haute cuisine with an iftar menu that offers 12 courses.

The Iftar menu starts off with dates and a capumiso soup. Edamame and gyozas are also offered and a include king crab leg au gratin, sea bass flambé, teriyaki jus glazed lamb rack and salmon fillet maki.

Mochi ice cream is also the sweet ending to the menu. This Iftar is priced at ¥11,297 per person.

Morimoto – Qatar


In Qatar, guests can expect an elevated dinner that connects the Ramadan vibes with Japanese cuisine.

From 6PM to 11PM, Morimoto opens its doors for diners to enjoy the flavors of three different set menus.

For ¥10,360, two people can share a vegetarian set menu, or opt for a set menu for two-three people priced at ¥22,794, serving up a16-piece sushi combo, braised lamb and teriyaki salmon.

Groups of four to five can sample a set menu with the added option of Wagyu carpaccio and nasu miso for ¥37,296.

Mori Sushi – Egypt


Over in Cairo, Mori Sushi is offering an unlimited sushi buffet for a Ramadan night Iftar.

For ¥1,512, diners can break their fast with a huge selection of appetizers and salads, an unlimited sushi buffet that is never empty and a selection of desserts to end the meal.

Ramadan inspired drinks are also available for refills throughout the meal.

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