• Roxii Hoare-Smith

Abd el Wahab Opens in London

The Middle East’s most acclaimed restaurant, Abd El Wahab, has opened it’s first UK restaurant in Belgravia, London.

Located on Pont Street, the 120-cover restaurant is the first Abd El Wahab restaurant outside of the Arab region. I visited for a taste of their traditional and much loved dishes and wines from Lebanon and across the Middle East.

Reflecting it’s location, the restaurant has a elegant design with a ceiling of gold leaf and plush banquet seating. The restaurant is beautifully designed and has a luxury look yet it is very casual and informal and we felt very relaxed throughout our dinner.

The restaurant offers an impressive collection of Lebanese wine – which we were able to try and it definitely got my seal of approval! I was actually surprised to find out that Lebanon produces award-winning wines. Wine has been made in Lebanon for at least 5000 years! I’ll be looking out for Lebanese wine more often from now on!

As a table of five we shared a variety of mezze dishes, cold starters included Fattouch Salad (a mix of greens, tomato, cucumber mixed with sumac spice, lemon juice and pomegranate molasses and topped with toasted flatbread), Quinoa Tabbouleh, Mixed Pickles, Moutabbal (smoked aubergine dip), Hummus, Stuffed Vine Leaves, and Flatbread. Hot starters include Sojok (sliced spicy sausages), Cheese Rolls, and Kebbeh (deep fried balls stuffed with minced meat).

We sampled an amazing selection of dishes, all with such unique flavours, aromas and beautiful colours – it was a sensory overload! We were very impressed and finished our starters feeling very satisfied and discussed our favourite dishes – mine had to be the Fattouch salad for the mix of flavours and textures, it was unlike any salad I had had before. Stuffed vine leaves are always a must-have when ordering mezze dishes and the Kebbeh was the perfect guilty pleasure dish.

For mains we shared a Mixed Grill, Lebanese Moussaka, and Kawarma meat – a mix of scrambled egg and minced lamb which was a personal favourite as it was unlike any dish I had tried before, so flavoursome and so light…although not the most photogenic.

The mixed grill came served with flatbread and a generous amount of lamb cutlets and chicken skewers all which were so ‘melt in your mouth’ tender, and cooked to perfection with that perfect chargrilled smokey aroma.

Next up was a selection of desserts for us to share.

I indulged in the Maamoul Flake, a creamy dish with a faint floral taste which was topped with pistachio and spun sugar (or ‘angel hair’ as they called it).

The highlight was the Lebanese baklawa, it was sweet and sticky and although sickly, so incredibly moreish. We could have done easily devoured another plate between the five of us.

These were enjoyed with a fresh fruit platter which was beautifully presented and also came with a generous selection of fruits.

We had an enjoyable evening at Abd el Wahab. It’s the perfect venue for group dinners and ordering a selection of dishes to share between you, and also a beautiful restaurant serving high quality, delicious dishes which is bound to impress anyone.

Abd el Wahab Lebanese Cuisine 1-3 Pont St Belgravia London SW1X 9EJ

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