If you’re born in and have been living in Singapore, you have have never tried Lebanese food because this cuisine from the Middle East simply isn’t common and popular here. However, this cuisine is by no means inferior. Lebanese restaurants in Singapore are typically located in areas where expats frequent, like China Square or Kampong Glam (since, I assume, foreigners tends to be more familiar with this cuisine than locals are).
My first (and only) encounter with Lebanese food happened in London back in 2009, and for the first time in my life I enjoyed the taste of lamb chops. I was never a fan of lamb until I discovered how good it can be when cooked with the right spices. I never had good lamb again and forgot about it as time passed, but this year (which happens to be the year of the Goat for Chinese zodiac) my love for lamb chops rekindled. I’ve been going around trying lamb chops from many places and today at Beirut Grill, I finally got to try it at a Lebanese restaurant once again. Look how many posts I have this year under the category “Lamb“!
Beirut Mezza Platter – $22.00++
This is served with Home-made Pita Bread. The pita bread was served warm and somehow it smells like Chinese Mantou to me. This platter is pretty much vegetarian, containing no meat.
Chickpea puree with sesame paste topped with extra virgin olive oil
I’ve tried hummus at several yoga events (typical yogis go for vegetarian food post yoga and this is usually served with celery sticks or raw carrot… not the most appetizing dish to be honest) and have more or less acquired the taste, but for those totally new to this, it will taste foreign because Singaporeans don’t usually use chickpeas in cooking.
Aubergine puree topped with extra virgin olive oil
I have no idea what this is (isn’t Aubergine and Eggplant the same?) and have never tried this before but among all dips this was my favourite.
Char-grilled eggplant with mixed capsicum topped with olive oil
This one was kinda like salsa.
Deep-fried Lebanese pastry filled with Feta cheese
I love feta cheese so this one is pretty good to me. Great as a snack.
Deep-fried fava beans croquettes served with tahina sauce
Falafel is probably the most famous item among all from the mezza platter and it’s somewhat like a vegetarian meatball.
Mixed Grilled Kebab Platter – $36.00++
The next item was a plate full of meat, big contrast from the previous vegetarian platter.
Chicken cubes marinated overnight with Lebanese herbs & spices
Personally I am no fan of chicken because when cooking chicken you either get salmonella or a dry mass. I probably got the breast meat or something and it was quite tough in my opinion (but better having it dry and cooked through than getting salmonella) and I can’t really appreciate the spices used for this meat.
Lamb Kebab Kofta
Char-grilled minced lamb with Arabic herbs & spices
This one was like meat balls and somehow the distinct lamb taste was not detectable at all. The spices must have worked like magic to remove all gamey smell.
Char-grilled beef cubes marinated in chef’s special spices
This one was decent and I liked the spices for this way more than the chicken’s.
Beirut Lamb Chops
Chef’s special dish, marinated in Arabic herbs & spices succulent & tender, char-grilled to perfection
And finally, the moment I’ve been waiting for! The name suggests that this is Beirut’s signature dish and it has to be because Lebanaese food = lamb chops (to me). The appearance of this wasn’t quite what I expected – the redness made it look like char siew. The spices worked like magic to remove the gamey smell of lamb which is quite impressive considering how tricky lamb can be to prepare, but it probably removed too much of the lamb’s distinct flavour. The taste of lamb was only stronger nearer to the bone. Overall I was quite satisfied with this item.
Samak Meshwi – $18.00++
Grilled fish cubes marinated in Arabic herbs and spices served with grilled vegetables and Vermicelli rice
Mousakaa – $16.00++
Char-grilled eggplant cooked with chickpeas & onions, stewed with tomato sauce served with Vermicelli Rice
The above 2 dishes are forgettable in my opinion. Just go for the lamb.
Baklava – $12.00++
Dessert made of Crispy filo pastry filled with crashed nuts tipped with honey and rose water
This was too sweet and heavy for my liking but I guess it’s the issue of acquiring the taste.
If you would like to try the lamb chops with better value, you can enjoy 1 for 1 main course using the Entertainer Singapore App (available to download for free, followed by in app purchases for membership).
The Entertainer Singapore offers more than 800 Buy One Get One Free offers for Singapore’s hottest restaurants, bars, informal dining, spas, activities, attractions and more. This year’s product includes the Entertainer Travel 2015, which features over 250 free night offers at leading 4 and 5* hotels across Asia and beyond.
The Entertainer Singapore app retails at S$60. (It can be used until the end of this year) The Entertainer Singapore book, which contains the same coupons in paper format, is priced at S$75 and is also available for purchase at http://www.theentertainerasia.com or selected bookstores. The promo code “2015ALVIN” will entitle one to a 10% discount upon checkout on the website.
If you have tried it last year, you may like to note that the app has been updated with two additional features which will improve user experience:
1) You can select offers to ping to your friends. All you need to do is tap on the paper airplane icon when you open up an offer and input the e-mail address of the friend you want to gift a voucher to. He/she will have 10 days to accept the offer, and after accepting the offer, all he/she would need to do is download the Entertainer Singapore app (free to download, and they don’t need to purchase any membership to use your voucher) and the offer would show up on their phone. They have until the voucher expires at the end of the year to use it. No more tearing up vouchers from the book and passing them around!
2) You can summon Uber to drive you to the Entertainer merchant you wish to visit, and see the rates with a single tap.
Value: 7/10 (better if you use the Enterainer App!)
Overall: Try Lebanese lamb chops and you’ll drop the phobia of lamb forever.
72 Bussorah St
Mon – Thu: 11am – 11pm
Fri – Sun: 11am – 1am