Dubai, United Arab Emirates
With its handful of pavement tables and understated branding, at first glance Goldfish looks a little utilitarian. However, look closer and you’ll discover that every table is full even at lunchtime ̶ and that some people are prepared to queue. This says something about the quality of the food on offer at this contemporary Japanese eatery by chef Akmal Anuar, who opened runaway success 3 Fils in Jumeirah Fishing Harbour in 2016 and, most recently, 11 Woodfire on Jumeirah Beach Road. Fiercely flavourful small plates range from sushi to yakitori, with the odd carb-loaded surprise thrown in for good measure, like a katsu sandwich that caused a stir when it first appeared on menus. Another longstanding favourite is a salty peanut butter chocolate tart that Anuar perfected during lockdown, served with zingy chocolate orange ice cream.
403 Al Wasl Rd, Al Wasl, Dubai,