I usually write about very high end over the top restaurants. But there are days when you just want to go out and eat. No muss or fuss, three day advance reservations, waiting lists or snooty hostesses in the place to see and be seen. You just want good food in an easy environment.
We found such a place called Haru Robatayaki. It’s off the beaten path of the main tourism strip in the Ramal area of The Walk, Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR). It’s an intimate Japanese restaurant, with capacity for about 100 inside and outside in the walkway area. We opted for inside so we could see the chefs working their craft in the open area kitchen.
The restaurant is the first of its kind in Dubai to offer the Japanese Robatayaki experience. Robatayaki is dining on small dishes of flavorful ingredients cooked over coals. The concept originated with simple beach restaurants, where Japanese fishermen cooked their catch over a charcoal fire (“ro” means hearth, or fireplace), with only an oar as a cooking utensil.
In addition to Robatayaki dishes, the menu retains popular favorites of Japanese cuisine including tempura, sushi, sashimi and teppanyaki dishes.
Haru is the brainchild of Chef Junichi Kwamura who we were fortunate to have joined us for the evening and share with us his vision and culinary creations. Chef Kwamura acquired his passion of cooking at an early age watching his mother cook in Japan. He’s traveled the world opening restaurants from Korea, to Moscow, and other culinary hotspots. He shared with us how he still loves his mothers cooking and how she is quick to give her mother’s advice on his dishes. He shared that when he is in Japan, he never goes out to eat, opting for the traditional comfort food of his upbringing prepared by his mother.
Haru is like eating at home without the necessary cooking or the clean up. It’s really tasty food but without over complicated sauces and over seasoning.
For our dinner, we let the chef recommend dishes and he did not disappoint. We started with Gyoza which is pan fried chicken dumplings…it was tasty without being over spicy and was accompanied with choices of sauces to enhance the flavor. Next we had the Tori To Asuparagasu which was my favorite. Crunchy asparagus spears wrapped in marinated chicken. Next we had the Yasani Tempura which was fresh vegetables in tempura sauce. We topped it off with Spicy Tuna and California rolls as expected with a very delightful wasabi sauce.
Haru is comfortable and easy. Fresh ingredients, good service, and delicious food in a comfortable relaxed environment. This restaurant is easy to recommend for locals in the JBR Walk area or for lucky travelers veering off the beaten path.
Opening hours: 12pm – 12am
Rimal, The Walk, Plaza Level
Jumeirah Beach Residence
Tel: (971) 04 4370134