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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 14 December 2018

International Coffee Day: our favourite cafes in the UAE 

We round-up some of our favourite niche cafes to go to for sipping coffee

The Living Room Cafe in the Khalidiya. Christopher Pike / The National
The Living Room Cafe in the Khalidiya. Christopher Pike / The National

October 1 is International Coffee Day. In honour of the occasion, we round-up some of our favourite cafes in the UAE that offer yummy coffee to enjoy.

Coffee Museum, Al Bastakiya, Dubai

Hidden away down the rambling stone alleys of the historic Al Fahidi district, is an ode to the world of coffee. Stop in here for an immersive look at everyone's favourite early morning kick, via background on the origin of beans, the history of the grinder, and the countries that produce the most of it.

It’s full of ancient caffeine-related artefacts, walls full of information, and coffee itself. There’s even a coffee-expert on hand often giving tastings and talks on the humble cup of Joe. But the best part is when you've done your homework, and you can make your way up to the top floor where the bohemian coffee bar awaits.

Complete with creeping plants, flat cap-wearing barista, and variations of coffee you’ve probably never heard of, from the outset, this has all the hallmarks of a hidden Melburnian gem, with a distinctly Arabic twist. www.coffeemuseum.ae

— Ashleigh Stewart

Café Arabia, Al Karamah, Abu Dhabi

Located in a villa opposite Umm Al Emarat Park in Abu Dhabi, Café Arabia is an ideal pit stop to relax and unwind.

It has comfy sofas, Arabian furniture, colourful lanterns and intriguing artwork, some of which is available to buy. The calm environment makes it the perfect place to read. You can also purchase local history books.

The extensive menu features delicious Middle Eastern fare and some great breakfasts. The highlight however is the delicious frothy coffee and selection of cakes, which come in many flavours. Hard to resist.www.facebook.com/CafeArabia

— Amanda Dale

Kaffa Beans, Silicon Oasis, Dubai

Tucked away in the deepest part of Dubai Silicon Oasis, within the Emirates Airlines accommodation buildings, this isn't a cafe you would chance upon — unless of course you've done your research. They've got their in-house roastery, they constantly aim to surprise and please with new additions — their Guatemala is oh so good.

When not busy, their head barista Alui is all up for a coffee chat like no other — he whips up his coffee chart, V60, Siphon and takes you on a coffee trip right by the counter.

They've got a brilliant menu there as well. I've brought in a number of my friends to Kaffa Beans — coffee lovers, or not — and they've all enjoyed the food there. My favourite? Their shish tawook with sweet potato fries. 3 skewers of delectable juicy chicken pieces with fattoush and hummus, served all day.

Kaffa Beans gets a thumbs up for me — not just for the coffee, but the smile they serve it with. www.instagram.com/kaffabeansdubai

— Reva Ananda

Fifth Street Cafe, Al Markaziya, Abu Dhabi

For my morning caffeine hit I can’t go past the Fifth Street Café. It’s a place that celebrates all things coffee culture: there is funky, and rather useful, chalkboard giving details of the types of coffee that are available.

Serving Arabica coffee, the options include less common treats such as con panna (Dh18) and flat white (Dh16) (as an ­Australian, I can confirm the latter is legit).

Comfortable and homely, there is a dedicated dining space with a row of green couches on one side, while the middle is taken over by larger tables suitable for ­family meals.

A row of small tables also line the warmly lit, stylised, sandy-brown walls. Best of all, underneath every second table or so is a power socket where you can plug in your laptop and make use of the complimentary Wi-Fi.www.diningatcourtyardmarriottabudhabi.com

— Saeed Saeed

Roseleaf Cafe at Dubai Garden Centre

A cozy cafe amid greenery is where you get amazing single-origin coffee. The cafe is at the back of the garden centre surrounded by plants, decor items and tools. Their coffee is freshly brewed and absolutely great. The seasonal coffees are batch roasted by a certified Q-cup roastmaster. Be it a latte, cappuccino or an Americano, you can definitely get your caffeine fix here in a tiny oasis on Sheikh Zayed Road. A calm and serene vibe helps you enjoy your favourite cup of coffee here. www.roseleafcafe.com

— Veathika Jain

The Living Room Cafe, Khalidiya, Abu Dhabi

A trendy and cozy place with amazing food, especially the cupcakes! Easily accessible, friendly staff and perfect hidden place to chill out. Visit during Christmas and you're going to love it even more. – Saheer Iqbal

Al Hallab, Garhoud, Dubai

Coffee is something very special to me. I love it, I am addicted to it and I can't live without it. My favourite place to drink it is at Al Hallab restaurant in Garhoud opposite Dubai Creek Golf Club. It’s so classy and beautiful.

I was first introduced to it when my dad organised me a surprise birthday party there and I fell in love immediately. It's so Arabic and makes me feel like I am in Jordan. The Arabic coffee is spectacular.

They always play music like Fairouz or George Wassouf, and this puts me in the perfect coffee drinking mood. Their food is lovely too. www.alhallabrestaurant.com — Moneer Al Kayyali

The One, Khalidiya, Abu Dhabi

My favourite place to drink coffee in Abu Dhabi is The One. I love the menu there and their cake choice is second to none. I love looking around the shop before going upstairs to sit and relax with a cuppa. I recommend their cappuccino. It was one of the first places I visited in Abu Dhabi and it reminds me of the long afternoons spent there with my mom. www.theone.com — Felicity Campbell

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