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Top 10 Restaurants & Cafés in Malé & Hulhumale

Deciding on a place to eat in Male’ and Hulhumale’ is just as hard as deciding what to eat in the first place!

Male’ and Hulhumale’ have both seen a boom in new cafes and restaurants in the past 10 years and we are here for it! Unlike before, now there are so many restaurants that you can go to try new food, cuisines, hang out, have specialty coffees and feast!

Selecting the top 10 among the numerous restaurants and cafes in Male’ and Hulhumale’ is a difficult task but here they are, in our opinion!

1. Bombay Darbar, Hulhumale’

This is no. 1 in Indian food in Male’ and Hulhumale’. You can really do no wrong in ordering their butter chicken, naan, and biriyanis. The flavours dance inside your mouth like a beautiful Indian melody. It comes as no surprise when they say that your hands are the best utensils when eating Indian food and this is one advice to follow at Bombay Darbar.

Photo from Instagram - Bombay Darbar

2. Ást Café, Male’

The Icelandic word Ást translates to "Love" in English and this is nothing short of how we feel about this spinoff cafe by Kavárna. The café comes with a beautiful interior, designed in a rustic yet cozy and a modern way, and a carefully curated menu to bring the best of what your tastebuds crave for. The nook with cozy seats near the big window overlooking the road is the perfect place to unwind and read a book while enjoying a fluffy cremespresso, which is nothing short of a little therapy.

Photos from Instagram - Ast Cafe

3. Manhattan Fish Market, Male’ & Hulhumale'

“Specialist in lip-smacking American style seafood!” as they describe the Manhattan Fish Market, is a Malaysian brand which was introduced to Maldives recently. The vast selection of seafood dishes that are available on the menu at MFM is surely exciting, but nothing beats the flame grilled seafood dishes that are torched right at the table. At this “ Fish Market” you can also get a variety of desserts which are going to beautifully compliment your palate after all the seafood.

Photos from Instagram - Manhattan Fish Market

4. Oishii, Male’

The only place close to authentic Japanese food in Male’ and Hulhumale is Oishii, The house of sushi. With Chef Fatheen heading the kitchen at Oishii, we can already trust that it’s going to be nothing short of a flavourful experience. From the simplest to the most intricate dishes, this restaurant is the best for the ultimate Japanese dining experience here in Male’.

Photos from Instagram - Oishii

5. Moon Cafe, Male’

Moon Cafe has been serving authentic Maldivian food ever since we can remember and this is proof that the flavours are well kept at this local cafe. Inside this old, unruly restaurant is the most heavenly Maldivian food you’ll get in Male’ for such a cheap price. A buffet of Maldivian classics like steamed breadfruit, sweet potato, yam and sides such as rihaakuru, rihaakuru dhiya and garudhiya, with a selection of staple condiments like theluli faiy and masmirus are there, to name a few.

6. Banana Leaf, Male’

Can you ever go wrong with choosing to eat at Banana Leaf? The answer is a simple no. From Indian Thalis to Srilankan Lamprais, banana leaf serves the best. The happiness you feel when you see them bringing the huge rice bucket and set of sides is unexplainable. The best thing to finish off the perfect banana leaf meal is with their pistachio milk-soaked cottage cheese balls named Rasmalai.

Photos from Instagram - Banana Leaf

7. Blood Orange, Male’

Blood Orange serves the best Valhomas Noodles and no one can argue about this. Going by the name Irudhashu Noodles, this is the no.1 item which you must try. Next on the list of things to try at Blood Orange is the handful of desserts included on the menu and it is only fitting that we say that they are flawless for the eyes as well as they are in the mouth. Apart from this, their menu includes something for everyone. From healthy options to heavy meals and desserts, one thing guaranteed for sure is that the food served at Blood Orange would not disappoint.

Photos from Instagram - Blood Orange

8. Zeeba’s Deli and Café’, Male’

Zeeba’s Deli and Café, named after the owner Zeeba Saeed, opened in 2015. Ever since then, we have been spell bounded by their food. As you enter this rustic and homey café, you will be welcomed by the freshly baked pastries. The famous giant cinnamon roll, the basque cheesecake, the spinach rolls, and the ever-changing lunch specials are on top of the reasons why we continue to love Zeeba’s. Their githeyo mirus sauce is like the cherry on top which is the perfect level up factor for any savoury food that you eat.

Photos from Instagram - Zeeba's Deli

9. Papa Sam’s, Hulhumale’

Eversince their opening in 2019, Papa Sam’s have been serving nothing but great food. This would come as no surprise as Papa Sam is “the Father of Good Food”, as they have described in their Instagram Bio. Their crispy chicken burgers are iconic with the option to get it with a side of wings, onion rings and fries. This paired with their iced teas would just be otherworldly if we do say so.

Photos from Instagram - Papa Sam's

10. The Maldive Kitchen, Hulhumale’

Giving Maldivians true nostalgia with the green front door and the carvings above the doors, is The Maldive Kitchen, where you can enjoy authentic Maldivian food in an authentic Maldivian dining room setting. With the gentle Dhivehi music playing in the background, a shelf full of Dhivehi books and a selection of Maldivian games, it sets a nostalgic ambience. A meal at the Maldive Kitchen is not simply a meal but a whole experience. You can find some of the famous Maldivian dishes or you can even opt for something unique like Rihaakuru riha and then finish off with a Maldivian dessert.

Photos from Instagram - Maldive Kitchen

Which will you try next?

We hope you found this blog post useful! Feel free to contact us for any more information.

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- Blog Post written by Aishath Maesha


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