Waka Dubai: Pretty interiors and tasty Latin American cuisine

Join The Huntr as we present our Waka Dubai dinner experience at The Oberoi hotel, Business Bay. Read on for the full review and scoop…

Opened in April 2017, Waka Dubai is a Latin American restaurant with a Japanese twist. The atmosphere is lively yet cosy. Low ceilings and dim lighting lend a romantic vibe whilst the Latin American music sets the tone for the cuisine and a live DJ later on in the evening injects the cool factor. The Latin American vibes are present in the decor – from the chairs to the art hanging on the walls. Waka’s gorgeous bar makes you feel as if you are in a super cool underground gem (thanks to the low ceiling) and the bartender whips together some fantastic cocktails and mocktails to whet the appetite.

Food wise you are in for a treat too… The Huntr tried the guacamole (which comes complete with nachos that taste homemade) and thoroughly recommend you do the same. We also sampled the watermelon salad, which is light and tasty and features Peru toasted corn. So good. For the ceviche, we tried the ‘Waka Caliente’ – which is different from the usual cold ceviche, since this dish is served by the chef using a really hot marble stone inside a pot. It was delicious. Japanese seasoning creeps into the cuisine in an unexpected and delightful way. The Huntr tried ‘Causa’ – a Peruvian potato dish that was served in Japanese Maki form with teriyaki sauce. But by far our favourite order was the ‘Carne Y Trufa’ – thin slices of Wagyu and crunchy, super-thin slices of truffle. A stunning dish that’s served on a box plate with dry ice and flower petals – and therefore very Instagram-friendly. For the mains, we opted for the ‘Salmon Altitude’, which comes with cauliflower puree. We weren’t blown away by this one, it could do with some rice to break up the saltiness. All great meals end on a sweet note and this was no different. We tried the Mini Paletas – adorable little mini ice-cream lollipops in passion fruit and white chocolate, lucuma and dark chocolate and cherimoya and dark chocolate flavours. And at the waiter’s suggestion – Coco Loco, a delicious mix of coconut mousse, pineapple confit and passion fruit ice cream.

The staff at Waka Dubai are friendly and knowledgeable, and the drinks are great too: We tried their signature cocktails and the Pisco – a Peruvian liquor mixed with white eggs, passion fruit and lemons – was particularly yummy.

All and all its a solid 8 out of 10 for this new fancy Business Bay eatery from The Huntr and we can’t wait to return soon.

Insider tip: Order the Carne Y Trufa. Make use of the bar pre or post-dinner. There’s a daily happy hour between 6 and 8.30pm (tapas included), a brunch on Friday nights from 8 – 11:30 pm, and a ladies night on Wednesdays, which offers free-flowing wine and sparkling from 7.30pm until midnight and a set menu priced at 180AED for men and women. The menu includes vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options.


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