The best coffee shops and cafes in Dubai

Those craving caffeine are spoiled for choice in Dubai, where coffee shops range from cutting-edge roasteries to neighbourhood cafes serving Arabic blends, presenting a slower side to the city

Last updated: March 21, 2024
The best coffee shops in Dubai | Sun-soaked outdoor seating at Heal in Jumeirah
Heal, Jumeirah

Dubai has elevated its coffee shop game in the past decade, evolving to reflect a diverse, global demographic. Arabic Qahwa (also known as kahwa or Arabic coffee), traditionally served in silverware with dates, is now met by a thriving third-wave coffee movement, which draws on flavours and techniques from around the world. The city’s best coffee shops and cafes often reflect a slower pace of life, and are situated in authentic neighbourhood communities, and act as a breeding ground for creativity and subcultures within the city. Many are also within reach of the city’s best art galleries and museums.

From repurposed villas housing lively cafes to cutting-edge roasters and classic neighbourhood coffee shops, here are some of our favourite places to sit and sip in Dubai.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Colourful bouquets at the florist in Villa Margot
The florist at Villa Margot

Jumeirah

Villa Margot

Best for: Flowers, design and coffee, beautiful backyard setting
Location: 68 Al Urouba St- Jumeirah, Jumeirah 2
Price: Cappuccino for 25 Dirhams / 6.8 USD

Set in a repurposed bungalow villa, this hybrid coffee shop, florist and concept store feels more like Marseille than Dubai. Boboboom lamp shades hang from suspended jute awnings around a small courtyard garden. Villa Margot’s founder, Sandrine, can be found styling peonies and ranunculus at the florist counter, while coffee is made using locally roasted beans from Q Lab. The menu is a collaborative mix between Pekoe (a small batch bakery) and French gourmet food store Maison Duffoir, and visitors can browse a curated edit of fashion and homeware labels before they leave.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | French toast topped with fresh berries at RX Apothecary & Kitchen
Flavour-packed french toast at RX Apothecary & Kitchen

RX Coffee Apothecary & Kitchen (Jumeirah)

Best for: A local favourite in Jumeirah and a mean San Sebastien
Location: Villa 13, The District Dubai, Al Athar Street, Jumeirah 3
Price: Cappuccino for 25 Dirhams / 6.5 USD

RX Coffee Apothecary & Kitchen is a cosy neighbourhood cafe with loyal patrons and a regular crowd. There are two additional mall-based outposts, but the Jumeirah location has the edge for its window-sill seating, which looks out onto clear skies with no high rises (a rarity in Dubai). The brew bar uses Fuglen beans sourced and roasted in Oslo and Tokyo, with a complementing food menu including decadent crème brûlée French toast. Takeaway and sit-in orders are equally popular, and there is a large dining space upstairs for remote working.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Three tiramisu flavoured lattes at Heal
Tiramisu flavoured lattes at Heal

Heal

Best for: Outdoor seating, innovative roastery and a great shakshouka
Location: Villa 30, Al Manara Road, Jumeirah
Price: Cappuccino for 24 Dirhams / 6.5 USD

Among the third-wave coffee shops that have opened in Jumeirah, Heal stands out for its perfect balance between clean and cosy, with a serene outdoor courtyard. Heal boasts its own roastery, where heady flavours include Brazilian beans with smooth chocolate notes, alongside traditional Arabic coffee offering an authentic taste of the region. What sets Heal apart from many of its contemporaries is the excellent food menu – we recommend the colourful granola boat or ‘eggs benny’ for a morning pick-me-up. It is open until midnight, and you can browse the brand’s minimalist homeware line of candles, oud and ceramics while you’re there.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | The exterior of Stomping Grounds cafe
Stomping Grounds coffee shop, Jumeirah

Stomping Grounds

Best for: A rustic, bustling cafe from Dubai’s leading coffee connoisseur
Location: Villa 98, 12D Street, Jumeirah
Price: Cappuccino for 20 Dirhams / 5.4 USD

Stomping Grounds is an antipodean-inspired neighbourhood cafe with the best rated coffee in the region. Owner Ryan Godinho founded Specialty Batch Coffee and is credited with shaping Dubai’s third-wave coffee scene. Friendly and knowledgeable staff will talk you through the drinks menu – make sure to try the Lotus Dalgona. Edison bulbs hang from jute ropes above wooden furniture, alongside trailing greenery, accompanied by outdoor seating. Mums, children and freelancers make up the cafe’s diverse demographic, with scurrying pets in tow.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Iced matcha latte on a wooden table
Awaken Coffee's iced matcha latte

Awaken Coffee

Best for: Quiet coffee or a quick drive through
Location: 1090 Al Wasl Road, Umm Sequim 2
Price: Cappuccino for 22 Dirhams / 5.9 USD

Awaken is the closest thing you can get to an alcove-style cafe in Dubai. The serene space is characterised by minimal interiors and large arched windows, offering a view of low rise Dubai. High-quality coffee is brewed using small batch Colombian beans in a smart V60 coffee maker, while Brazilian beans are used for milk-based coffee. There is also a drive through option, for those in more of a hurry.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Tables, plants and warm lights decorate Amongst Few coffee shop
A look inside Amongst Few

Amongst Few

Best for: Creative space, industrial setting
Location: Villa 3, 966 Al Wasl Road, Umm Sequim 1
Price: Cappuccino for 22 Dirhams / 5.9 USD

Amongst Few is a concept store-cafe-creative space in the Kite Beach side of Jumeirah. There is a sneaker store at the front and a barber, DJ decks and cafe at the back, in a palette of concrete, wood and stone. The signature roast is a local blend from Three Roastery, sourced from Kaffa in Ethiopia and roasted locally. Despite its popularity, it remains off the tourist radar, drawing a creative, in-the-know crowd.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | A smoothie bowl packed with banana, berries and oats
The smoothie bowl at Ferment Artistry Cafe

Al Quoz

Ferment Artistry Cafe

Best for: Coffee in a warehouse setting
Location: Warehouse 2, 22 Street, Goshi Warehouse Village, Al Quoz 3
Price: Cappuccino for 22 Dirhams / 5.9 USD

Don’t let Ferment’s unassuming industrial facade fool you – inside, coffee is served in a cavernous warehouse space, clad in concrete, leather and upcycled Persian rugs. Iranian baristas will happily talk you through the menu, which uses Arabica Coffee from Crack Coffee Roastery, based in Dubai. The laptop-friendly cafe welcomes all-day workers, and there is also a menu of light dishes.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | RAW Coffee Company's yellow mobile coffee van
RAW Coffee Company's mobile coffee van

RAW Coffee Company

Best for: A homegrown experimental roastery, action-packed coffee house
Location: Warehouse 10, 4A Street, Al Quoz
Price: Cappuccino for 23 Dirhams / 6.2 USD

What started off as a supply business with an onsite roastery has evolved into a thriving coffee house that serves more than a thousand cups a day. Owners Kim Thompson and Matt Toogood are revered coffee connoisseurs with multiple accolades to their name. Beans are roasted with scientific precision in laboratory-style rooms, and a training campus is held onsite for budding baristas. Try the Pha Yar Gyi Kone blend, using fruity beans from Myanmar, or Mexican Zongolica, a clean breakfast coffee sourced from farmers of the indigenous Nahua community in Veracruz. The industrial space has high ceilings and polished concrete floors and draws a diverse crowd ranging from government officials to artists and families.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | A drink being made in the kitchen at Roseleaf Bakery & Cafe
A barista at Roseleaf Bakery & Cafe

Roseleaf Bakery & Cafe

Best for: A greenhouse style cafe amidst one of Dubai’s loveliest nurseries
Location: 733 Sheikh Zayed Road, Inside The Garden Concept Store, Al Quoz
Price: Cappucino for 23 Dirhams / 6.2 USD

Roseleaf is a charming cafe housed in a light-filled glass gazebo, tucked away behind rows of plants and suspended flower pots flanked by flowers and fountains. The leafy setting is a welcome contrast to Dubai’s urban glossy aesthetic, with coffee sourced from Dubai’s much-loved Nightjar coffee roasters (more on that below). Match your brew with a bowl of homemade granola, or a freshly baked carrot cake.

Veggie Royale at Nightjar

Nightjar Coffee Roasters

Best for: Specialty coffee in the heart of Dubai’s art and culture district
Location: Warehouse G62, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz
Price: Cappuccino for 22 Dirhams / 5.9 USD

Nightjar is among the original openings on Alserkal Avenue, a creative warehouse complex that houses some of the city’s best regarded galleries. A daytime DJ plays cool electro swing against an eclectic industrial backdrop, with seating spilling out onto an outdoor terrace. Nightjar roasts and brews onsite and supplies coffee all across Dubai. The menu eloquently breaks down flavours and tasting notes, with highlights including the Gonzo coffee. Follow a cup of coffee with Turkish chilli scrambled eggs, and mingle with the city’s creative demographic. The hybrid space regularly hosts collaborative events with fashion labels, and houses an independent cinema, flower shop and boutique hair salon.

The best coffee shops at Dubai | Vinyls frame the walls at Cassette Dubai
Vinyls frame the walls at Cassette Dubai

Cassette Dubai

Best for: An upbeat coffee shop in an artsy community space
Location: The Courtyard, 4B Al Quoz, Al Quoz
Price: Cappuccino for 22 Dirhams / 5.9 USD

Cassette sits under the dome of a new structure that houses a theatre school and a handful of boutique stores. The specialty coffee shop is modestly furnished with white tables and ceiling fans, with pink bougainvillaea creeping down from above. Coffee is sourced from Dubai roastery Seven Fortunes, perfect with a creamy spinach croissant, accompanied by an upbeat retro playlist. Sit here long enough and their friendly baristas will insist you try the iced Shakerato. The Courtyard represents an artsy community in Dubai, which encourages a slower pace of life.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Minimalist interiors at Espresso Lab D3
Espresso Lab D3, Dubai Design District

Dubai Design District

The Espresso Lab D3

Best for: Experimental coffee in a manicured modern neighbourhood
Location: Ground Floor, Unit 8, Building 7, Dubai Design District
Price: Cappuccino for 27 Dirhams / 7.3 USD

Some serious coffee innovation happens in The Espresso Lab universe – a buffet of beans locally roasted in Dubai and served with pride by enthusiastic and knowledgeable baristas. Owned by award-winning Emarati coffee expert Ibrahim Al Mallouhi, the cafe works with family-owned estates around the world, thus representing unique and bold flavours from different regions. The Espresso Lab sits in the heart of Dubai Design District, home to some of Dubai’s most talented PR firms and independent boutiques. D3’s tall glass buildings have a reflective openness and the interiors of The Espresso Lab carry that aesthetic forward, with a contemporary aesthetic and a central marble coffee bar. Expect to find professionals, designers and the occasional tourist ordering a Costa Rican Geisha for a faultless espresso.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Pastries and coffees line the tables at Nomad Day Bar
Outdoor seating at Nomad Day Bar

Trade Centre, Downtown

Nomad Day Bar

Best for: A courtyard coffee bar at one of Dubai’s best (and only) boutique hotels
Location: 25 Hours Hotel, Trade Centre Street
Price: Cappuccino for 20 Dirhams / 5.4 USD

Nomad Day Bar is positioned in the al fresco courtyard of 25Hours Hotel, which draws a youthful, lively crowd for its exuberant contemporary art and regular alternate music events. Coffee is provided by Dubai roastery Nightjar, and there is a well formed food menu including berry waffles and eggs your way. Combine your visit with the Museum of the Future next door.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Drip coffee at % Arabica
% Arabica drip coffee

Citywalk, Downtown

% Arabica

Best for: High grade coffee in a well-located corner cafe
Location: Al Mustaqbal Street, Citywalk 2
Price: Cappuccino for 24 Dirhams / 6.5 USD

Tokyo-born % Arabica has coffee footprints all over the world, including several locations in Dubai. The most localised outpost sits on the corner of Citywalk, a partially pedestrianised area in downtown Dubai. The glass-fronted cafe has a minimal interior, and high grade coffee is roasted fresh in store. Many pop by for a green-hued matcha latte, or a white chocolate mocha for a sweet kick.

The best coffee shops in Dubai | Poached eggs, feta and sourdough toast brunch dish
A brunch dish at Encounter Coffee Roasters

DIFC (the heart of downtown)

Encounter Coffee Roasters

Best for: The perfect piccolo at an upscale coffee shop
Location: ICD Brookfields Place, Trade Centre, DIFC
Price: Cappuccino for 22 Dirhams / 5.9 USD

Gone are the days when downtown folk had to rely on the malls for a good cup. Crowds now flock to Encounter, a bright and airy coffee shop adjoined to The Arts Club Dubai. Baristas work with single origin beans and a smart poursteady machine, against a glass-fronted view of the DIFC summer garden. There are several additional branches in malls across the city, but the ICD Brookfields ranks the best for vibe and setting.