The Dubai Diaries: Motomachi @ Dubai Festival City

Located at: Crescent Street, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Visited on: 20 Apr, 2019

Here’s a good, casual spot for a decent Japanese meal. It’s near the Waterfront of Dubai Festival City (DFC) and has outdoor seating if you prefer some alfresco dining (not during the summer, of course!). It was our second visit, and it made me appreciate the place in a light that hadn’t dawned on me during the first visit.

We ordered a Kinchin Jiru – vegetable tomato soup with white radish, carrot, enoki mushroom and Japanese leek (AED 29). The broth-y soup was not as tomato-heavy as one might expect, but was tasty and came with plenty of vegetables.

Kinchin Jiru

The next two dishes were fantastic. One was their Ebi Ten Wasabi Mayo – deep fried shrimp with wasabi sauce (AED 47). Six succulent, crunchy shrimps fried to perfection, with a yummy wasabi mayo to complement it. I wouldn’t have minded a little more wasabi in the mayo, but it was fine even as it was. We ordered a second round of these.

Epi Ten Wasabi Mayo

The other was their Ebi Tempura roll (AED 53). This comprised eight chunky pieces of roll with crunchy tempura prawn and a wonderful crispy crumb on top. I only wish there was a bit more of the dip that lightly lined the side of the dish and had been delicately sprinkled with some spices and condiments. Delish.

Ebi Tempura

One of our mains was a Chicken Katsu Don (AED 28 – regular, AED 35 – large). The chicken was quite delicious in this and, together with the egg, had caught the soy seasoning well. I initially felt like the rice was not as moist as it should have been with the soy dressing that comes with katsu don, but as I motored on I realised that most of this was at the bottom. Overall, a hearty and tasty bowl of food.

Chicken Katsu Don

Another main dish was their Kaisen Yakisoba – seafood stir-fried noodle (AED 68). In addition to the noodles being prepared nicely, this plate came with a rather generous serving of seafood – squid rings, prawns and dices of fish, all in substantial quantities. It also had a bit of vegetable, of course, and some pickled ginger to add a tad bit of heat if required.

Kaisen Yakisoba

The last main dish was a Tai Gohan – seasoned rice with grilled seabream (AED 68). This was the smallest of the portions and, although the fish had been seasoned pretty well, the dish as a whole was quite simple.

Tai Gohan

We decided to try out a few of their desserts too as, so far, we were quite pleased with the way things were going. Their Choux Cream (AED 24) was a must-try, and well, certainly no regrets there! The delicately bread-y shell of the pastry was filled with a layer of delicious, cool custard, topped with a dollop of smooth, light cream. It was lovely. So light, but so scrumptious. Definitely something to enjoy.

Choux Cream…


…and its cross-section

Naturally, we had to try a slice of their Motomachi Cheesecake (AED 26). This too was light and yummy, only subtly dense but not crumbly either. The top crust was perfect, with a light sprinkle of sugar dust. Good job.

Motomachi Cheesecake

Finally, we also thought of trying a piece of Taiyaki (AED 13 – one piece, AED 58 – five pieces), which is essentially a biscuit with a filling of your choice – Nutella, custard cream or Anko. We went with Nutella. I can see how any kid (or anyone who’s a kid at heart) would not want to stop at one of these. They’re wonderful little indulgent cookies.


I think this place has done enough to make me want to pay another visit on my next trip to Dubai. Mata ne, Motomachi!

Yummy Rating: 4.0 / 5.0

Special offers: Emirates Platinum card holders get 15% taken off the total bill.

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