Eating is a popular pastime in Jeddah. In the city’s diverse culinary scene, there are hundreds of restaurants that offer dishes from all over the world and offer something for every taste and budget. Below is the list of the best restaurants:
The history of ALBAIK began in the city of Jeddah in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1974 when the late Shakour AbuGhazalah found that high-quality, affordable food was needed in a clean and inviting environment that was served quickly and politely. Shakour signed an exclusive brokerage contract with a company abroad for the use of self-made fried chicken spice mixes and equipment, the first to introduce the concept of fried chicken to Saudi Arabia.
This restaurant opened in 2017 and has quickly established itself as a favorite in Jeddah due to its affordable cuisine and cozy character. The menu features a wide range of international dishes, from Japanese Wagyu steak to Italian buffalo mozzarella salad and Mexican tacos, all cooked perfectly by chef Hakim Bagabas. The outstanding dishes, however, are the sandwiches, which are served on freshly baked brioche. The restaurant has seating spread over two levels of bars, cabins and tables, and despite its relatively large size, offers a cozy atmosphere that makes it ideal for large groups or more intimate meals.
Piatto has an excellent reputation and has set up numerous branches throughout Jeddah, all inspired by the Italian piazza. Both the inside and the outside seating area are equipped with cobblestones, lampposts, lots of greenery and central fountains. Piatto sources its main ingredients directly from Italy, including flour from Ravenna, San Marzano tomatoes and fresh buffalo milk mozzarella, to name a few. Highlights of the menu include thin-crust pizza and a selection of fresh pasta. With every meal there is a free salad and bread. For dessert, the restaurant offers an in-house gelateria with different flavors. Pro tip: Piatto offers great lunch deals on weekdays, ideal for price-conscious guests.
Jeddah has many excellent burger shops, with Section B being one of the best. The modest house was built in 2013 and has retained a local atmosphere over the years. There are wooden tables and chairs on the two floors as well as an uncomplicated decor. What he lacks in thoughtful design more than makes up for the delicious food – it took months to perfect his burger recipe. Choose between chicken, Angus beef (which is imported weekly) or vegan patties with various toppings and side dishes, which are made every morning from fresh vegetables from local farmers. If you want to be pampered, try the outstanding prime rib patty with sweet potato fries. It can take up to two hours on weekends, so it’s best to arrive early.
5. Toki restaurant
From the ornate columns and tables with glass tops to the exquisite chandeliers and ceilings, it’s easy to see why Toki is one of the most impressive gourmet experiences in Jeddah. However, the food is the star of the show. Specialists from China, Malaysia and Thailand create Toki’s fusion of East Asian cuisine served on large round tables with Lazy Susans to make sharing easy. Start with dumplings steamed in a traditional Chinese bamboo basket, followed by crispy duck and pancakes. Finish with beef in black bean sauce, chicken satay and fried egg rice. Wash everything with the refreshing lemon and mint juice – perfect on hot summer days.
6. Al Nakheel
Located near the Jeddah Corniche, Al Nakheel captures the spirit of the city. Here, visitors can look out over the Red Sea and enjoy the high-quality Levantine cuisine. The restaurant’s specialty is locally caught seafood, which is prepared on the grill and served with a salad. Combine them with generous portions of hot and cold meze. Al Nakheel also has some of the best hummus, tabbouleh, kebab, and freshly grilled meats in town. The main restaurant is in a traditional oriental tent with lots of cozy, upholstered seating and large tables that are perfect for large groups. The interior is air-conditioned in summer and there is plenty of outdoor seating in the cooler months.
7. Zodiac Cuisine
The Zodiac Cuisine gourmet restaurant is just a stone’s throw from the Jeddah Corniche and is the perfect place to celebrate a special occasion. It offers a mild candlelit atmosphere and views of the coastal town. From Italian risotto to Spanish Gambas al Ajo (garlic prawns) to a Japanese sushi platter, the menu offers a world-wide inspired and exceptionally executed cuisine. The drinks are also great, with the Zodiac Cocktail – a mango, kiwi, guava and strawberry cocktail – and the antioxidant bloom tea, two great options.
8. BOGA Super Foods
BOGA Super Foods has most likely increased the spread of organic food in Saudi Arabia. This local restaurant was founded as a small, local company by entrepreneur Tariq Al-Hussaini and now has several branches in Jeddah and other parts of the country. It offers a fascinating selection of dishes from farm to table, with many of its ingredients grown in-house in vertical farms, and serves a selection of ultra-fresh and affordable salads, sandwiches, and other guilt-free dishes. The ambience of BOGA is minimal and yet inviting. A section shows the selection of greens that are grown on site. It is a great choice for vegan visitors.
Papaya has perhaps the most enticing ambience among Jeddah’s restaurants, thanks to its location in a greenhouse full of tropical plants – a striking contrast to the desert city outside. Papaya is located in the Al-Zahra’a district and has been operating seamlessly from day to night. As soon as darkness falls, purple and green lights create a lively atmosphere. The menu is as quirky as the venue and offers a rich mix of cuisines, from Middle Eastern and South Asian to European. Try the outstanding Tom Yam Kung (Thai soup) or the Italian Tagliatelle Alfredo. Papaya is also a popular breakfast spot, with a menu that offers everything from French toast and waffles to omelets.
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