- Özgür Töre
Expo 2020 Dubai will bring together millions of people for The World’s Greatest Show, celebrating human brilliance and achievement under the theme ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’ from 20 October 2020 to 10 April 2021.
A selection of UAE-based cafés, restaurants, and food trucks will be showcased at Expo 2020 Dubai, offering millions of visitors the chance to taste varied cuisines from homegrown brands, while giving renowned local institutions the opportunity to make their mark on the international food scene.
With more than 200 nationalities calling the UAE home and almost 16 million visitors to Dubai in 2018 alone, it is no surprise that the local food scene reflects a vibrant melting pot of cultures. The UAE-based cafés, restaurants and food trucks chosen to share their dishes are no exception, spanning influences from Lebanon to India and the Philippines to Ireland.
Enjoying great popularity among Emiratis and expats, these small and medium-sized eateries, mostly homegrown and family-run, offer comfort and consistency and have been selected for their quality and longevity in the UAE.
Local favorites that will have outlets at The World’s Greatest Show include classic Dubai brands Arabian Tea House; Al Farwania, an Indian gem; Seashell Cafeteria; Dampa Seafood Grill, a Filipino hotspot; Lebanese stalwarts Al Reef Bakery and Al Khabbaz; and Firas Sweets, which is renowned for its traditional Middle Eastern dessert, kanafa. The six-month spectacular will also feature a variety of Al Samadi’s concepts, such as Hummus Spot, Rogue Coffee and Twisty Treats.
In addition, there will be some fun and novel brands, such as Saj 2 Go, which serves a type of baked bread that dates back centuries; Doh, a coffee and doughnut specialist; Flower Café; and the camel milk-inspired Majlis Café. Expo 2020 will also welcome the iconic The Irish Village, showcasing authentic Irish food and traditional entertainment.
Darren Tse, Director – Concessions and Programming, Commercial, Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “Expo 2020 will be a foodie destination in its own right and we urge visitors to bring a hefty appetite so they can explore the wonderful diversity and generous hospitality that the UAE is renowned for.
“Adding color and texture to Expo’s offering, these homegrown brands will shine a light on Dubai’s fun and flourishing food scene, and inspire millions of visitors to Expo 2020 to try some tantalizing flavors from here in the UAE and around the globe.”
Ali Al Rais, Founder of Arabian Tea House, said: “I am very excited that Arabian Tea House, the first Emirati restaurant, will be showcased to millions of international visitors at The World’s Greatest Show. I believe that the best way to explore different cultures is through food, and Expo 2020 offers the perfect opportunity and platform to demonstrate Emirati hospitality.”
Colm McLoughlin, Vice Chairman and CEO of The Irish Village, said: “We are thrilled to be part of Expo 2020. The eyes of the world will be focused on the UAE when it hosts this global event. Dubai is known for its amazing infrastructure, market-leading events, and technological innovations – without a doubt, it will deliver a world-class event. The Irish Village is looking forward to serving its award-winning food and offering an authentic Irish welcome to local, regional and overseas visitors.”
The much-loved local restaurants will be among the 200-plus food and beverage outlets at Expo 2020, spanning street food to celebrity chefs and offering more than 50 cuisines to suit every palate and budget.
From 20 October 2020 to 10 April 2021, Expo 2020 Dubai will welcome the world to celebrate creativity, innovation, and culture. Its theme, ‘Connecting minds, Creating the future’, reflects Expo 2020’s vision for a better future for our planet. With 192 participating countries and an expected 25 million visits, it will be the largest event ever held in the Arab world.