Sticky Rice restaurant in Dubai's JVC to reopen for dine-in this month

The restaurant closed its doors in January owing to Covid-19

Dubai, United Arab Emirates - August 17, 2019: Mother and son duo open Thai restaurant: Mohamed Abedin, Emirati, and his Thai mother, Amena Rakkuson. Saturday the 17th of August 2019. JVC, Dubai. Chris Whiteoak / The National
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While the Covid-19 pandemic has affected many businesses in the UAE in one way or another, popular Thai restaurant Sticky Rice has had a particularly tumultuous year.

In January, as the number of cases rose in Dubai, the restaurant had to temporarily close both its venues in Jumeirah Village Circle and its newer, larger venue at Food District, The Pointe on Palm Jumeirah.

A month later, it was announced that Amena Rakkuson, better known as the "Mama" behind the popular family-run brand, had died of complications from Covid-19.

While the JVC branch reopened in March for food pick-ups and deliveries, it has stayed closed to dine-in customers for nine months.

However, the team has announced through an Instagram post that the venue will not only be reopening its doors on Thursday, but that the restaurant has also expanded to welcome more customers.

"It is with great pride and honour that we announce the reopening of Mama’s beloved restaurant for dine-in," they wrote.

"This was the last project Mama worked on for all of us. Her dreams started really small but as every day passed and she noticed there weren’t enough seats, customers who crammed in to eat her food would jokingly say 'Your food is amazing! You should take over the shop next door, blow a hole in the wall and expand!'

"She would always laugh at the thought but one day she surprised us all and actually did it and said, 'Now there will be more place for everyone to sit and enjoy themselves comfortably.'

"We are now super happy to invite you all in this Thursday to discover the new extension and enjoy Mama’s food the way it should be eaten, piping hot from our kitchen."

There a number of rules that will be in place for dine-in customers.

The restaurant will only accept cash payments upon reopening, until the venue receives a new card machine, but diners can pay via Chatfood if needed.

Tables are available on a first-come, first-served basis except for groups of six to eight people, in which case customers need to call ahead and make a reservation.

"Thank you all for your continuous support, we truly appreciate it, from the bottom of all our hearts. We have missed all of you and look forward to welcoming you back home this Thursday," Sticky Rice said on their Instagram post.

"Mama, we know you’ll be there too, just like you always have been."

Updated: September 14, 2021, 7:14 AM