Through the world of blogging I have made many on line friends whilst visiting their blogs to chatting to them on social media. There are some bloggers that I have met in person at blog events and many have become really good close friends. Last Friday I met up with Jagruti from Jagruti's Cooking Odyssey. We came to know each other about 4 years ago and from time to time we meet up for lunch or go shopping together, we both share the same obsession for collecting blog props.
Both of us love Lebanese food and were excited to look at the menu to select some dishes that we had not tried before.Whilst we sipped on a chilled Lebanese drink called Jallap made from dates, raisins and rose essence,we browsed through the menu as to what vegetarian options they had and also asked the waitress for recommendations about some of the unfamiliar dishes.
We opted to choose a selection of side dishes to share instead of mains as this way we could sample a little of everything.We ordered Makdous which is a dish made from preserved baby aubergines stuffed with walnuts. The preserved aubergines had a salty, tangy bite and the walnut, chilli and garlic stuffing gave the aubergines a wonderful flavour leaving your mouth salivating for another bite. Don't shy away from the shrivelled up look they tasted amazing.
We also tried the Batala Harra Meal which was a platter with hummus, Batata harra (spicy fried potatoes), Falafel, Tabbouleh and Cheese roll (filo pastry spring roll with cheese as the filling.) The Batata Harra, which I usually adore was a little disappointing, it was bland and lacked the flavour we had expected, however the tabbouleh was delicious and very aromatic with the herbs.
Also on the menu was a side dish called Fatayer which we ordered. Fatayer were mini pastry parcels with a lovely spinach and onion filling. The pastry was light and simply melted in the mouth and the spinach and onion filling was really well seasoned and tasted delicious.
The final dish we ordered was the Mousaka'a Betinjan. Having never tried this dish before we were unsure what to expect. When the dish arrived it was an aubergine and chickpea stew with boiled rice.The stew was quite watery and sadly we did not enjoy it as much as all the other dishes.
Each dish was different in taste and flavour, however Both Jagruti and I were in full agreement that the Makdous and the Fatayer definitely stole the show, as they were really tasty and flavoursome and we could easily have eaten more of the same. Being food bloggers we were both intrigued to find out how they were created, unfortunately we did not really get a opportunity to chat to the owner or the waitress so find out the secret recipes!!!
We ended our lunch with a latte and Lebanese coffee which was served in an authentic Lebanese copper pot. Both Jagruti and I had our eyes on the pot which was gorgeous.It would make the perfect food prop!!! We did not sample any desserts so I am not sure what was on the menu.
Food - 4 / 5
Ambiance - 3 /5
Service - 3 / 5
Score - 10 / 15