Eat your way around Porto Arabia

Shereen D’Souza and Mona Shaaban scour the lengths of Porto Arabia to track down 30 top eateries

Eat your way around Porto Arabia
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A’la Turkish Cuisine
A’la Turkish Cuisine is one of the most authentic Turkish restaurants in town. Its décor is a mix of traditional and modern with teal blue accents all around. We love the Turkish music playing in the background. The piping hot complimentary bread and the incredible doner sandwich are on top of our list. Try chicken on the skewer for mains and the havuc dilimi baklava stuffed with traditional Turkish ice-cream for dessert.
30 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4468 5597).

Alison Nelson’s Chocolate Bar
A go-to spot for for dessert lovers, you’ll find endless varieties of sweet tooth-satisfiers. The fondue is great for sharing and if you’re leaning towards something more savoury, try the turkey and brie sandwich made from actual roasted turkey (not cold cuts), melted brie and slices of pear. A perfect combination.
Marina Way 1, The Pearl-Qatar (4409 5236).

Al Mayass
One of the most unassuming of the city’s Lebanese Armenian collection, Al Mayass has an expansive list of hot dishes and we love the sujuk here. Whichever kebab piques your interest, you won’t be disappointed.
30 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4002 8411).

Anima Lounge
This part-restaurant, part-art gallery hosts some of the most unique works of art we have seen around town. Drop by for a nice meal at the restaurant – Anima is known for its healthy options like the cranberry almond salad and of course, the legendary quinoa brownies that taste like a dream.
30 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4002 7554).


This quirky, cool diner has contemporary décor – blacks and whites with colourful lamps hanging from the ceiling – nothing particularly Arabesque about it, though. The food is usually hit-and-miss, but the sujuk meatballs are a smashing success. The signature hummus with harissa comes in a close second.

22 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4409 5271).

Burj Al Hamam
Among the usual suspects (which are all done brilliantly) there are more unusual, authentic dishes, such as smoked fish row and sheep’s brain. They have some very fancy shishas, too. 1 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4495 3876).

You can’t go wrong with Carluccio’s when you’re in the mood for some straight up comfort food. And here’s some motivation – two for one pizzas every Monday.
18 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4462 1616).

Emirgan Sutis
One of the few Turkish restaurants in Doha that serve authentic gozleme. It’s right by the marina, so fantastic views guaranteed. Some very tasty kebabs can be expected here.
18 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4477 4346).

Emporio Armani Caffe
This Italian café has a massive selection of breakfast items, appetisers, lots of Italian classics like lasagne and tagliatelle, a selection of pizzas and tasty desserts. It's a good chance to practise your Italian accent and have great coffee at the same time.
7 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4413 5306).

Flat White
Flat White is the coffee shop you never knew you needed until you had it. With a rustic feel and a laidback vibe, it’s pretty much perfect for any day of the week. Go by yourself with a laptop or book or take a few friends along. The fresh baked goods here cannot be missed. Try the lemon zucchini cake.
27 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4029 1965).

Fleurs et Café
A delightful and pretty café where you can sip on flower-flavoured coffees while getting your bouquets customised. The rose croissants are so tasty, you’ll just end up ordering additional flowers for more alone-time with those crescent-shaped morsels of goodness.
25 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (7737 3739).

La isla bonita indeed, especially when the isla is serving super Mexican food. There’s a whole new menu here and Mexican burgers feature on it. Spoiler alert: they have irresistible options for churros. We actually recommend staying hungry for an entire day before bingeing here.
2 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4409 5285).

Jones the Grocer
Jones the Grocer is a great option for any meal of the day. Its industrial chic interiors and vast menu are important highlights. For breakfast, we recommend the basil pesto, avocado and herbed salad or eggs Benedict and brioche French toast for those with a sweet tooth. Good food, cool décor and a great view of the Qatari skyline make us regulars here.
31 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4029 6928).

This dimly-lit Japanese restaurant carries an authentic Japanese vibe and is perfect for a small gathering with friends or family. You will adore the outfits of the wait staff and simple décor. Order a few hot dishes and a few sushi items. Pro tip – there’s a small corner of the restaurant selling Japanese goods and yes, you’ll find wasabi Kit Kat, too.
14 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4002 8294).

Karak Mqanes
It’s rare to find a budget-friendly spot in The Pearl, but if anyone can, it’s us. If the desserts and karak here aren’t enticing enough, we can guarantee the best Qatari breakfast on the island is served here.
31 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4029 6928).

Le Relais de L’Entrecote
Classic Parisian food without the pain of pouring over a menu is what you can expect here. Le Relais de L’Entrecote serves a set menu of salad, two servings of pepper steak (cooked to your liking) and fries. Ask for the dessert menu at the end and take your pick from the numerous options. We highly recommend the relais vachelain, a tower of ice cream and meringue.
1 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4002 8182).

Mado Café has made waves for its Turkish breakfast and desserts. Try the traditional morning meals, complete with cheeses, jams, bread and eggs. The elaborate desserts look fantastic, too. Do not leave without ordering the special Turkish tea or coffee.
20 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4436 4622).

Hands down, the best Japanese fine-dining spot in The Pearl-Qatar and undoubtedly, the best ramen in Doha is right here. The signature appetiser, crispy asparagus, is one for the books, and practically everything else on the menu is just the epitome of Japanese indulgence in this area.
6 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4409 5237).

Mimz Café
This quaint little bakery and café is known for its sugary creations and its customised cakes for special occasions. We are obsessed with the chocolate truffles (in Oreo, Nutella and lotus flavors) here and some of the hot desserts, too. Also, try the tea in bright pots (great for pictures) or some coffee to offset all that sweetness.
31 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4444 4171).

Nineteen Ninety
We’ve never seen anything like this in Doha. This unique café has all eyes on it for its incredible looking food and desserts. Main courses are served with gigantic knives and forks and dessert comes as a woman with sunglasses and a giant candy floss hairdo. It’s larger-than-life exciting and the first-of-its-kind in Doha. If there’s one café we highly recommend trying out, it’s this one.
Marina Way 30, The Pearl-Qatar (5041 1990).

This bakery and café always delivers, especially in the breakfast department. Try the complete breakfast for the best offerings. It comes with fresh juice, a hot beverage, something baked (the croissant is incredible), bread and jam and eggs. Try to grab a table outside to enjoy the view of the marina, in months of better weather, of course.
14 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4436 4622).

Royal Tandoor
On certain week nights, Indian food is absolutely mandatory, especially if you’re an expat. The Pearl has a dearth of excellent spots, but you can always find a reliable bowl of butter chicken at Royal Tandoor. Try the garlic butter naan, instead of a regular naan.
23La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4002 0777).

Shakespeare & Co.
This place is straight out of a fairy tale (a very expensive fairy tale). The ornate décor with bright colours and pastels and prints give a wonderfully whimsical feel. It’s great for families and has an extensive menu with lots of options for those with varying palates.
12 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4477 4017).

Tea Club
If you’re looking for a luxurious setting with a great view, look no further than Tea Club. The large crystal chandeliers, velvet couches and wall shelves stacked with tea boxes make for a comforting diversion from your typical cafés and tea shops. In addition to its wide variety of tea, Tea Club offers appetisers, salads, mains and desserts.
31 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4444 4707).

The French Olive
Ah, good old French Olive has a branch here. On those days when you just want a good, comforting meal and you’re in no mood to experiment, The French Olive has you covered. We love that this spot has a good balance of healthy and light yet indulgent food.
1 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4488 8328).

The Noodle House

Come here for a big bowl of laksa or some tasty Singaporean noodles. The portion sizes are great and you won’t break the bank.
1 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4488 8328).

Torte Delizia
The décor can come across as a bit tacky, but you can have an excellent cup of coffee and some delicious pistachio cakes here. They’re open late into the night, too. Perfect for late night carb-loading.
31 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4436 4622).

White Oryx Thai
The duck spring rolls here are noteworthy, but they’re not the only reason we love this place. The purple- and gold-themed décor is so authentic and the food follows suit. Fair warning, when they say spicy, know there’s some real heat coming up. You’ll need a box of tissues and a brave spirit though, because you won’t be able to stop eating the green curry.
30 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4477 4275).

White Sugar
Although it hasn’t been around for too long, this cute little café is already making an impression with its rich desserts and homey indoor and outdoor seating areas. Its signature dessert is a tres leches cake that you need to try. It has just the right amount of sugar and feels lighter than air. The hot beverages here are perfect accompaniments.
30 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4414 3777).

Yasmine Palace
This brand new spot has really raised a few eyebrows – in a good way. It is surprisingly always packed, even on weekdays, and the food served here is just excellent. Good food at an Arabic restaurant is not a shocker, but the décor here is. The restaurant is massive and every inch is incredibly and beautifully detailed. We can go as far as saying there is nothing more palatial in Doha than Yasmine Palace. At least not on The Pearl.
31 La Croisette, The Pearl-Qatar (4411 1502).

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