Dubai chef Reif Othman opens new Palm Jumeirah restaurant amid pandemic

The chef behind Reif Japanese Kushiyaki has two mini home-grown concepts launching this month

Chef Reif Othman is expanding his business to Palm Jumeirah at Depachika Food Hall. Courtesy Reif Othman
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It's been a while since those in the food and beverage sector had something to celebrate. With the coronavirus pandemic upending schedules, a number of new launches have been pushed back or put on hold indefinitely as industry professionals adapt to the new environment.

Despite the challenging few months for those in the industry, Dubai chef Reif Othman is giving food lovers in the region much to look forward to with some brand new launches at Depachika Food Hall, located at Nakheel Mall, Palm Jumeirah.

The first concept is a cake and chirashi counter to be set up on Thursday, May 21, right in time for Eid. For those curious, chirashi is a Japanese dish of sashimi scattered over rice. The counter menu boasts 13 desserts with Othman's signature Japanese spin on classic comfort cakes. Customers can also expect four cold chirashi bowls with a base of quinoa or brown rice topped with sashimi-style protein.

Dubai's Nakheel Mall is getting a cake and chirashi counter featuring 13 desserts with a Japanese twist. Courtesy Reif Othman  

Meanwhile, Friday, May 29, will see the launch of a donburi pop-up, which will operate every Friday and Saturday, giving customers access to Japanese bowls of fish, meat and vegetables served over rice. The pop-up features six rice bowls served warm with a variety of toppings, with a limited offering of 200 donburis per day.

The two home-grown concept introductions are a prelude to Kushi by Reif – another concept that will open at Depachika in Nakheel Mall later this year. The establishment will offer a mini-twist to chef Othaman's Reif Japanese Kushiyaki restaurant (which opened in August last year at Jumeirah's Dar Wasl mall) with a smaller menu of Japanese soul food.

“Every crisis also opens up opportunities. With demand for comfort food on the rise given the pandemic, I am keen to offer customers some savoury dishes and desserts now, as a taster of the Kushi by Reif concept that will launch later this year.

“Simple, classic cakes and Japanese rice bowls – all with my own trademark twist. With this new Palm Jumeirah location, we are now able to easily feed residents across that side of town as well as Jumeirah,” said Othman.

Prices start from Dh24 for desserts, Dh60 for chirashi and Dh62 for donburi. The dishes will be available for dine-in and take-away, with delivery to start soon through Deliveroo.