A review of the Red Sun Brunch at Katana Robata and Sushi Bar, Dubai

By Rosan Katlea-Reodica


The night before, I had to choose between three sets of OOTD’s before settling for a thrifted off-shoulder lace top and black stretch gauchos with normcore kitten heels. It’s brunch, isn’t it? Rampahan bago busugan? The Friday’s that makes the whole of Dubai go a-frenzy, destroying weekend body clocks to look Instagram-ready while devouring a buffet spread and alcohol selection na parang pabilisan eating challenge. I was dressed to impress, fill my tummy up with AED395 worth of food and dance the afternoon away. In short, handa akong mapagod.


Katana’s #RedSunBrunch isn’t the brunch that tires you out with food coma of edibles you will vaguely remember. Natuwa ang proper lace top ko – the place is high-ceilinged, beautiful afternoon light filled the space, seating soft yet sturdy; spacing between tables not narrow enough to eavesdrop but close enough to make friends; well-curated music gave off a relaxed happy vibe; and attentive but un-hovering waiters make the place laidback yet upscale. It’s a Japanese resto that doesn’t need to go all-out Asian on you, making the food speak for itself. Thank heavens it’s not another buffet!


We were served a seamless 5-course experience. Starting off with lightness of green salad, lotus root chips, edamame, tempura whose breading won’t hurt the roof of your mouth, and an added Italian flair of Salmon Carpaccio with feta cheese (fave!!!).  The star dishes came next – robata or juicy skewers slow-grilled over hot coal of angus(!!!) beef, chicken, salmon, prawn and corn. We were served sauces to pair, but we barely touched them. On their own, the skewers just melt in your mouth and coat your tongue with their full flavor – perfect with both the red and white wine we were having. Then comes the sushi platter after we quickly strolled out for fresh air and fountain views.

Katana Robata and Sushi Bar:  Of tongue-hugger Robatas, afternoon calmness and non-existent food comas


Did the selection convince me though? Yes, if only for how it was styled. Nothing fancy when it comes to the flavor profiles, but the dishes were fresh, filling, and well-prepared, all without trying to be too trendy. No Cheetos maki’s here! The fourth course alone would keep me coming back to Katana. Imagine thick-sauced yakiniku, crispy-skinned tangy Jidori chicken with scallion relish, buttery grilled salmon, rice with heapings of prawns and chicken, and green beans with oyster garlic sauce that was meant to be a basic side dish but failed immensely as it was superb even as a main course. The lychee daiquiri, sorbet, macarons, and the matcha cheesecake bid us goodbye with the lasting impression that Katana will surely see us again even if it wasn’t brunch. This is the perfect place to take time with the food and converse with the person you’re with without having to shout at each other over the table. We went home clearly remembering what we ate, my make-up intact and tummy all full without that nagging bloating feeling of brunch we are all used to. I guess I found my new Friday tradition!



Min 2 sharing. Dhs295 (soft drinks), Dhs 395 (house beverages), Dhs 495 (bubbly). Friday 1-4pm. Brunch guests min age 10yrs.

For enquiries and reservations, visit www.katana-dubai.com.



Rosan is a Desert Mermaid who always wants to stay wet wherever she goes. She tells impatient people that she is a Practicing Misis – a woman of hits and misses. Being told she won’t be able to get married without learning to cook adobo, she has now learned to make her own pesto, guacamole and her own flavored taho. She now has a book – The Practicing Misis, but still doesn’t have her own kitchen.




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