Last weekend I got a chance to try this middle eastern eatery located in Marina Mall Abudhabi. Seeing an invitation from Abudhabi always made me to think twice before accepting it since driving all the way to there,it should be an exciting reason for driving all the way.But the intro in the mail about this place was soOo rousing that I accepted it instantly. Villa Beirut is a dream venture of a girl name Dalia, growing up in 1900 she was fascinated by her mother traditional recipes and wanted to create a stir with these authentic Lebanese cuisine. She started her own restaurant with only 4 staff and created a name in the market. After a massive success of a small scale restaurant she seized an opportunity to expand even further but unfortunately just before the grand opening in 1942,for unknown reason,Villa Beirut never opened.
But its a famous saying when there is a will there is a way her dreams didn’t cease there her legacy has lived on in her grandchildren.They made her dream a reality by reopening of Villa Beirut. What an interesting and inspiration story of a passionate lady.
The restaurant gives you middle eastern vibes and it was more like a walking on antiquity street of Beirut delineating traditional and customary philosophy of art and design. Thats what Dalia envisioned a happy place where family gathered to enjoy good food and traditional music. Bold blue windows on the yellow walls shows the vibrancy and distinctive vision of the restaurant. That unique approach is not only prominent in the appearance but they endeavor to steer it in food too.From crockery to the each details tell you the story pertinent to Beirut.
We started our night with refreshing drinks citrus madness and cranberry surprise.Both were invigorating and equally good in taste.
Than our table got beamed with Hot and Cold Mezzah. In cold selection we tried
- Hummus Chmandar
- Al Raheb
Above all the listed items hummus Chamandar was new to my palate it was not just our conventional hummus,the twist was the addition of beetroot,yes!!! you heard it right beetroot and believe me I was myself skeptical about the taste but the mixture of chickpeas and beetroot with tahini it was amazing.
In hot mezzeh we had
- Sawda Djej
- Spicy Potatoes
Makanek and sajok was again new to me. Sojok spicy red Lebanese sausage with a special blend of spices was a bit hard bite for me where as Sawda Djej chicken liver cooked with garlic and pomegranate sauce was an interesting blend of spices.
I thoroughly enjoyed all the cold and hot variety of mezzah with freshly baked hot bread. I could eat it all alone, they were like hot, plushy pillow like soft. Now, it was time to dig in the main course. Being in a Lebanese restaurant and you don’t get to try mix grill completely impossible and than there came a mix grill platter on our table. Small chunks of 3 kind of meat to feast our tummy. It was sad to see there was no arayes and I shameless asked for it with another round of garlic paste,which is an integral part of eating mix grill for me. Arayes came with a very small serving size and believe me all the wait was of no worth. I would definitely praise the quality of mix grill because all three variety were soft and juicy with perfect taste but arayes was not upto the mark.
So, conclude our fascinating journey of Beirut on a sweet note we tried Rice with Milk,the rice with milk was delicately flavored with pistachio and seemed ok!If I got to try kunafa I think I would have given more points to the the whole experience.
All in all, I relished my visit to Villa Beirut and going Abudhabi all the way from Dubai was successful with exciting discovery of another Lebanese Restaurant.