The Middle East is known for its tempting and delicious food. The cuisine of the region is a fusion of Lebanese, Greek, Mediterranean and Arabic dishes. It is quite popular all over the world. Dishes such as kebabs, hummus, falafel, and shawarma sandwiches are very tempting and enjoy good favour with people all over the world. For all you Lebanese food lovers out there, here is a list of the top 5 Lebanese food joints in Goa where you can get a taste of authentic Mideastern flavours.
Salaam – Indo Arabic Lounge, Vagator
Salaam – Indo- Arabic Lounge at Vagator (Image: facebook.com/salaam.indoarabic)
Starting our list of authentic Lebanese food joints in Goa is Salaam. This is an Indo – Arabic restaurant set within the premises of the Living Room Boutique Hotel in Vagator. The restaurant has lounge-style seating with low glass tables and sofas to relax and enjoy some nice Arabic dishes. The outdoor seating area has suspended umbrellas which help in shielding guests from the hot sun. There is also a live grill where meat and chicken dishes are roasted right in front of the customer’s eyes. They also have an air-conditioned seating area inside.
The restaurant offers a combination of popular Arabic and North Indian Mughlai dishes. For the main course, you could try their veg mezze platter, which consists of Arabic Hummus, which is a nice chickpea dip served with bread. You must also try the Baba Ganoush, which is a roasted eggplant, cooked with olive oil and lemon juice, and served with onions, tomatoes, and other vegetables. Their Greek salad with olives and feta cheese serves as a nice supplementary dish to your meal. The cheese in the salad entwines with the flavour of oregano and olive oil, and every portion is large enough for 2 persons. They also have a bar within calling distance from the seating area. The bar offers a nice variety of cocktails and mocktails as well as non-alcoholic beverages at reasonable rates.
Grilled prawns served at Salaam Restaurant (Image: facebook.com/salaam.indoarabic)
Mezmiz at Sangolda (Image: facebook.com/mezmizingoa)
Next on our list of authentic Lebanese food joints in Goa is Mezmiz. This is a charming little restaurant located in a cosy Goan home in the village of Sangolda in North Goa. The restaurant is decorated with artistic wall hangings and has plenty of mid-eastern touches all over the place. Indoor, as well as outdoor seating, are available at the restaurant. The ambience is warm and personal, with modern Middle Eastern music playing softly in the background.
The restaurant serves Lebanese and other Mediterranean cuisines. One can try the Adana kebab, which is a mutton seekh kebab platter served with sliced red onions. They are very succulent and flavourful. You can also try the jujeh kabab, which are tender chunks of chicken cooked with saffron. The chicken is very juicy and is served with charred tomato and onion.
Both the kebab platters come with pita bread, a bowl of pickled veggies, and a grilled green chilli.
View of the bar and the seating area inside (Image: facebook.com/mezmizingoa)
To go along with the warm platters, you can also order a Toum and Muhammara combination dip. The place is run by a young couple. They are very polite and professional and take care of everything perfectly. Overall, a nice place for a quiet evening, with great Mideastern food.
Shimon’s Falafel, Arambol
Guests enjoying a nice meal at Shimon’s Falafel in Arambol (Image Credit: facebook.com/hellertova)
This place is a delight for those who crave Middle Eastern cuisine. It is located just a few metres away from Arambol beach. It serves a variety of Middle Eastern delights like falafels, shakshuka and sabich pita sandwiches.
Just stop by once at Shimon’s falafel and you’ll keep coming back. The owner is really personable and makes sure that you are comfortable and satisfied with your order. He sometimes even gives you different dips to sample and savour at no extra cost. The hummus served here is simply scrumptious.
Must-tries at his place include the shakshuka plate and their falafel laffa sandwich. The Shakshuka plate is very delicious and is served authentically in a hot pan. It is literally the best shakshuka you can find anywhere in north Goa. Their Falafel Laffa sandwich is served with delicious hot sauce. The falafels are freshly prepared with fresh oil right in front of your eyes, they are cooked to perfection -crispy on the outside and warm and tasty on the inside.
This place also serves some nutritious milkshakes and smoothies. Also, all the dishes served here come in huge portions and are also reasonably priced. The place is a must-visit when in Arambol.
Falafel Laffa sandwich served at Shimon’s Falafel (Image Credit: Shimon’s Falafel Facebook Page)
Gatheround Restaurant at Agonda (Image: facebook.com/happygatheround)
Gatheround is located on Agonda Beach Road in Agonda. It is a good place to eat and relax in a beautiful environment, away from the craziness of the area’s three main beaches. It is nestled in a lush green lawn and has a very tranquil vibe. Live music during the evenings adds to the overall dining experience.
The place offers a variety of seating options for its esteemed patrons. You can sit on cane chairs, low couches, or on one of the many cushions on the ground. The staff are very kind and courteous and go out of their way to assist you in deciding what to order.
The restaurant specialises in vegetarian Lebanese cuisine. Except for a few meals that use yoghurt, everything else served here is 100% vegan. The food is very tasty and is served in huge portions. A dish that is a must-try at this place is the Lebanese mezze platter. It consists of hummus, creamy goat cheese, braised cauliflower, a fantastic minty zesty salad, potatoes cooked in olive oil and coated in fresh herbs, spinach fried in a sweet pastry, and flat pita bread. The platter is simply incredible, with so many different items to choose from, each with unique flavours and textures. The food is prepared with fresh vegetables and cooked in high-quality olive oil. They also provide a good selection of drinks and amazing house cocktails to go with your meal.
People enjoy a nice evening at the restaurant (Image Credit: www.facebook.com/happygatheround)
Habibi Lebanese Sensation, Chapora
Habibi Lebanese Sensation, Chapora (Image: facebook.com/habibitheoriginal)
Lastly, concluding our list of authentic Lebanese food joints in Goa is Habibi Lebanese Sensation, Chapora. Situated in a narrow lane in Chapora, this place is a small fast food joint that offers pure Lebanese vegetarian food. It is very close to the famous Darling’s bar. It is primarily a takeaway with a few tables available outside for those who wish to sit and dine right there. The place is open till late evening and is a great place to catch up with friends and have a nice chat while munching on some delicious snacks.
The place is run by a Lebanese national named Sevag Seissian, popularly known as Sesse Habibi. The kind of food offered over here is sure to take you on a trip down memory lane if you have lived in the Middle East. The owner is a very dedicated person who puts his heart and soul into the food he prepares. Everything is freshly prepared with the finest ingredients.
The place offers a wide variety of sandwiches, fritters and platters. One can’t afford to miss out on their signature dish Shakshuka. Made with Sesse’s family recipe, it is a Middle-Eastern breakfast delight made up of tomatoes, chilli, garlic, paprika and poached eggs, accompanied by some freshly baked Lebanese flatbread. Their chicken kebab and halloumi wrap are also very tempting and irresistible.
Shakshuka served with pita bread (Image:facebook.com/habibitheoriginal)
The falafel, which comes with extra cheese, is simply delicious and mouthwatering. Also, their baba ganoush sandwich, which consists of eggplant cooked on charcoal with tahini and fresh veggies, is simply incredible. Their sharmouta roll and zaatar wrap are also worth trying.
So, all you Lebanese food lovers out there! What are you waiting for? Head down to one of these amazing food joints with your family and friends and enjoy a nice evening feasting on some delicious Lebanese dishes. Enjoy!
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