It might be housed in the Raffles Hotel, but TOMO is so much more than your average hotel restaurant. The name translates as ‘long-term friend’ and the team behind the highly acclaimed Japanese eatery hope that guests will be so blown away by their experience that they will keep returning to TOMO until it becomes a place that feels like home. The venue itself is a bright and welcoming space with an abundance of light from the floor to ceiling windows. Situated on the top floor, the restaurant boasts views across the city which make it a particularly special spot for guests to watch the sun go down. Al fresco dining is also an option on the beautiful terrace overlooking the Dubai Creek. Inside, the décor is stylish and contemporary with oriental artwork and lanterns giving a nod to the restaurant’s cultural heritage. A large bar enables counter dining for those wanting a peek at the chef’s at work, whilst floor level seating is also available for those seeking an authentic dining experience.
The a la carte menu is extensive, and as you would expect offers a large assortment of top-quality sushi, sashimi and tempura dishes. However it also promises some lesser-known plates that are equally as prominent in the Japanese diet. We love the sound of Hotate Mentaiko – a grilled scallop dish with a spicy cod roe butter and Tori Tatsutaage –Japanese style deep fried chicken. Elsewhere the Itamemono section offers an assortment of stir-fried pork and vegetable dishes, and the Noodle list comprises a tempting selection of hot and cold soups and ramens with soba or udon noodles. Chicken Katsu is a popular choice from the curry list and Wagyu Gyu Don is a great way to try Japan’s famous beef, shredded and served with a sweet sauce in a traditional Donburi rice bowl with miso soup. Most dishes are available as half or full portions – perfect for sharing – but for the indecisive TOMO’s bento boxes are a great way to try a selection of dishes.
Even if you don’t have much room for dessert be sure to give their traditional Mochi ice cream balls a try.