September 05, 2023

Eating Out Japanese Style in Msheireb

Japanese cuisine is becoming increasingly popular across the world. And, though sushi has been a favourite culinary export since the 1970s, the 21st century has witnessed an explosion of Japanese restaurants across the globe.

So, why is food from the Land of the Rising Sun taking us by storm? Firstly and most importantly, Japanese food is a taste sensation. Ingredients used in Japanese cooking are fresh and very varied, though recipes remain relatively simple to let the main components sing. And the ingredients used are often unique to Japan, creating equally distinctive-tasting dishes. Additionally, the varied raw materials, flavours, and assorted cooking methods make a very diverse menu, giving us a myriad of options to suit a vast range of tastes. Consider, if you will, just a few dishes - Miso Soup, made with just five components, including water, Gyoza, beautiful savoury moon-shaped dumplings served with Ponzu sauce, Ramen, an entire meal in a noodle soup that boasts a colourful array of fresh ingredients and flavours, the simple BBQ style chicken, Yakitori, Sashimi, a dish of finely cut raw fish, or the ever popular and oh so simple Sushi, rice bites combined with vegetables and fish.

Aside from tickling our taste buds, Japanese cuisine is also aesthetically pleasing, like art on a plate. The serving dishes and plates used, the colours and shapes of the food, and the way the food is laid out are all important to the culture that believes that we eat with our eyes first and foremost. So, when eating Japanese food, we can revel in colourful, well-presented and often artistically designed plates of grub. Plus, Japanese food is inherently healthy - a huge plus point in today's health-conscious society. And finally, Japanese culture, known for its peaceful, quiet serenity and respectful, efficient style, is carried over into its cafes and restaurants, making them very appealing places to dine.

Qatar's capital city, Doha, has a plethora of Japanese eateries offering the food, the style and the ambience we crave, from fast-food Ramen kiosks, Sushi Bars and Noodle Houses to fine-dining restaurants, including the infamous Nobu. But, if you are looking for somewhere particular to try Japanese cuisine or to find a new favourite foodie haunt, Doha’s Downtown Msheireb area has plenty of options to suit your tastes and budget:

Japanese Food in Msheireb

Msheireb, located amid neighbouring areas, Souq Waqif, the Amiri Diwan (the seat of government and the royal palace) and Al Bidda Park, is Doha's recently redeveloped downtown district. The precinct is an area of historical significance restored to provide a sought-after contemporary living, working and leisure space, perfectly blended with features inspired by Qatari heritage and traditional architecture.

Amongst the cool, shaded streets, sand-coloured buildings, and tree-filled courtyards with zen-style water features are a host of heritage sites, art houses and galleries, shopping districts and, more importantly for this feature, an array of cafes and restaurants. The following boast some truly appetising Japanese delights:


Image: theworldkeys

Mosaic is located in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Barahat Msheireb - a large open-air square at the heart of the revived district. The restaurant, one of nine eateries in the hotel, isn't solely a Japanese restaurant but rather a "culinary journey inspired by the Silk Route" - an ancient trade route linking Asia and the West. However, of the nine speciality open kitchens sported by the diner, you can find one dedicated to Sushi and Sashimi and one to Yakatori (grilled dishes). You can also find popular dishes such as Gyoza with crispy fried Wagyu beef, Shrimp Tempura with a Dashi sauce, and Grilled Wagyu Beef Ribeye, to name but a few, on the main menu.

The restaurant also offers varying speciality menus. In particular, you can eat from the Japanese menu every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. The set menu, Tour of Japan, is a feast of nine dishes, from Japanese soups, salads and dumplings to mouthwatering Robata Grill dishes, sushi and sashimi platters and udon noodle plates, as well as two desserts - a mere snip at QAR 340 per person.

The restaurant's menu is mid-to-high in terms of cost, but it is worth a try for the food and the surroundings. The eatery is located on one of the hotel's top floors, with indoor and outdoor dining space, and has a spectacular view across and past the Amiri Diwan and over the ocean to West Bay's skyscrapers.

Location: Mandarin Oriental, Barahat Msheireb Street, Msheireb

Location Map: Mosaic

Nearest Metro: Msheireb Metro Station (Metro Interchange) on the Red, Gold and Green Lines.

Opening Hours: Sunday to Monday, 6:30 am - 11 pm (Breakfast 6:30 pm - 11 am)


Contacts: +974 4008 8888

[email protected]

Instagram: @mo_doha

Ramen Restaurant

Image: Facebook

Ramen Restaurant Msheireb offers an extensive menu of fresh and morish authentic Korean and Japanese food. Ramen is the eatery's speciality dish, but there are plenty of other delights to sample from both cultures. From the Japanese options, you can order Sashimi, Nigiri, Noodles, Sushi Rolls, Noodles, Poke and Rice Bowls, Japanese Curry, Bento Boxes, Gyoza, and Tempura, as well as BBQ dishes, including Wagyu Beef. If we had to recommend just a couple of dishes to try, we'd have to plump for the Beef or Hot Gyoza Ramen - the little Gyoza dumplings are unbelievably tasty. If you like a bit of heat, try the Spicy Noodles. Or, if you want an easy snack, order the fried Beef Dumplings or the Wasabi topped Green Dragon Sushi Rolls.

Ramen also offers a buffet menu on Fridays and Saturdays (12 noon - 11 pm) for just QAR 150 pp. The buffet includes all Ramen and dry noodle dishes, a free Sushi Roll, ice cream and a soft drink. Plus, there are various other great value set menus during the week for lunch. 

The restaurant is a short walk from Msheireb Metro Station, behind the Park Hyatt Hotel. Once inside, the decor is quirky, traditional-style, with hanging paper lanterns shaped like Koi carp, traditional Japanese Shoji blinds offering partitioned areas for private dining on low tables and floor cushions, wooden-cabin-style booths, and Japanese and Korean knick-knacks adorning shelves and bookcases. With mid-range prices, excellent fresh food, with so much choice, in super relaxed, off-beat surroundings, Ramen is a perfect spot to grab a taste and feel for Japanese/Korean culture.

Location: Al Mariah Street/Al Jawen Street, Msheireb


Nearest Metro: Msheireb Metro Station (Metro Interchange) on the Red, Gold and Green Lines.

Opening Hours: Saturday to Thursday, 11:30 am - 12 am; Friday, 12 pm - 12 am


Contacts: +974 3374 6520

[email protected]

Instagram: @ramenqtr

Facebook: @ramenrestaurant-qatar

Sora Doha

Image: Instagram

From comfort and tradition to fine dining - Soba is one of Doha's high-end Japanese cuisine offerings. The eatery is well-known for taking traditional foods and elevating them with contemporary flavour twists and unique presentation ideas. Whether dishes are served on distinctive and quirky plates, platters and bowls, on mini-charcoal grills at your table, or with clouds of dry ice bubbling around them, there is always a surprise to amaze and delight its customers. However, the food is the piece-de-resistance. 

The menu at Sora incorporates all the favourites, Sushi, Sashimi, Maki, Nigiri, Ramen, Miso Soup, Tempura, Yakitori and Robata-style Wagyu Beef, but each dish is a work of art and a concoction of harmonious flavours. We love the Wagyu Beef Nigiri with salmon, truffle Ponzu, cheddar cheese ( yes, really!), truffle mayo, garlic mayo, lime salt and Togarashi (Japanese spices), the Kyushu Sushi Roll with soy wrap, avocado, asparagus, fresh Hamachi (jackfish), avocado coriander mouse, caviar and Kimchi truffle mayo, and the Soft Shell Tempura Crab with watermelon, cucumber salad and Shiso ( a Japanese herb). And, if we're feeling really flush, we plump for the Wagyu Beef Tenderloin Yuzu Kosho with pumpkin puree and Yakiniku sauce (a sweet and savoury Japanese BBQ sauce).

The restaurant is on the 21st floor of the Park Hyatt Hotel in Msheireb. The rooftop diner offers both lounge and terrace dining with awesome views across the city and seascape - a very instagrammable panorama, especially when combined with the plated artwork and the custom-made cherry blossom-style lighting in the lounge! Having won the Best Japanese Restaurant in Doha accolade from the Fact Dining Awards in 2021, Sora has some excellent credentials. However, the exceptional food, views and ambience command high-range prices, so make sure you bring a full wallet when visiting this establishment!

Location: Park Hyatt Doha, Sikkat Wadi Msheireb Street, Msheireb

Location Map: Sora

Nearest Metro: Msheireb Metro Station (Metro Interchange) on the Red, Gold and Green Lines.

Opening Hours: Sunday to Monday, 4 pm - 12 am


Contacts: +974 4009 4344

Instagram: @soradoha


Image: Facebook

Sumosan is definitely a heavyweight when it comes to Japanese cuisine in Doha. With a contemporary take on the classics and a host of new creations, Sumosan offers a menu full of indulgent ingredients, outstanding flavour combinations and culinary excellence. Every dish is elevated beyond the standard recipe, each remastered with aplomb. You can order a plethora of favourites, from Miso Soup, Maki, Nigiri, Sushi, Sashimi, Shrimp Tempura and noodles to Wagyu beef steaks, 24-hour marinated Miso Black Cod and Kushiyaki (skewered) Chicken with teriyaki sauce. However, if you fancy pushing your flavour horizons a little further, you could opt for Homemade Wagyu Tacos, Miso Baby Chicken, Crispy Sushi Rice Pizza with black caviar, Milk Bread Wagyu Sandwich with truffle fries, or Sumosan Doha Sushi Roll with salmon aburi, prawn tempura, asparagus and dukkah (a Middle Eastern blend of nuts and spices.

The restaurant serves its sophisticated food with equal flare and artistry - every dish is an artist's dream of colours, textures, culinary magic and choice of unique serving vessels. This is against a backdrop of elegant surroundings, with chandeliers hung from high ceilings, plush leather booth seating and an open kitchen for guests to watch the master chefs at work. Located on Barahat Msheireb, Sumosan also has a stylish air-conditioned outdoor terrace extending its dining area, perfect for cooler evenings and watching the world go by. 

Sumosan Doha is part of a global chain of innovative, critically acclaimed and multi-award-winning Sumosan restaurants. The Doha branch, opened in 2021, has already been nominated for the BBC Good Food Middle East Magazine Award for Best Fine Dining Restaurant in Doha. And, while the price point for a meal at the restaurant is high - for the food, the atmosphere, the location and the worldwide kudos - the experience is priceless.

Location: Barahat Msheireb, Abdullah bin Thani Street, Msheireb

Location Map: Sumosan

Nearest Metro: Msheireb Metro Station (Metro Interchange) on the Red, Gold and Green Lines.

Opening Hours: Sunday to Wednesday, 3 pm - 11:30 pm; Thursday - Saturday, 1 pm - 11:30 pm


Contacts: +974 4411 7550

[email protected]



Main image: byFood

Published: September 05, 2023
Last updated: September 05, 2023
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