The 150-cover site with multiple areas is perfect for all occasions. After walking through a grand entrance lined with lush plants, guests enter the stylish and spacious restaurant with middle-eastern inspired lamps, tiles and other décor. Comfortable banquettes wrap around the restaurant whilst soft teal booths are perfect for groups. The elegant marble tables below the glass roofed Sunroom are a charming place to sit during the day and enjoy a healthy wrap for lunch or meet for a coffee with friends.
Located on the busy George Lane in South Woodford, guests at the newly opened Liban Tapas can also enjoy the large Parisian-style terrace behind the new restaurant which offers a tranquil space away from the hustle and bustle of the High Street.
Liban’s menus cater for vegetarians, vegans, and those who are gluten-free or follow a halal diet. Their sharing plates are perfect for diving in with family and friends. Owner Emilio Malik says “I wanted to open a restaurant in East London with a sharing culture alike to that in the Middle East but within a more refined setting with first class service”. Emilio prioritises the sourcing of authentic ingredients from Lebanon such as the very best spices, tahini, olive oil and labneh. Emilio also works closely with London’s established Lebanese community and uses the best local Lebanese bakers and butchers and source their flatbreads and halal meats.
Homemade Falafel, Hummus, and Motobaal are made freshly for each service as well as other much-loved Mediterranean goods such as Grilled Halloumi, Moussaka and Stuffed Vine Leaves. Homemade Lebanese pastries are also served including Fatayers, little pies filled with spinach, sumac and pine nuts, and Sambousek, crisp fried pastries bursting full of tasty feta cheese. All meats are sourced from the finest Halal supplier and are grilled over charcoal for a delicious smoky flavour.
To finish, a fresh mint tea and homemade Baklava is perfect to satisfy the sweet craving. For those wanting something more, the ‘Afters’ menu includes much-loved desserts much as Chocolate Fudge Cake as well the more traditional Muhalbiyah, a Middle Eastern rose-scented milk pudding, and Kunafeh, an Arab pastry soaked in sweet syrup, layered with cheese and dusted in pistachio nuts.
The many heaters and cosy woven rugs make the terrace the ideal East London sanctuary for drinking and dining al fresco during the colder months. Guests can sip cocktails such as the Lebanese Gimlet, a vodka-based cocktail with strawberry purée, and South Woodford, Bombay Sapphire, Lychee Juice and Syrup and Lemongrass. The team have also created a Gin & Tonic Menu, pairing gins with Fever Tree tonics to create the perfect balanced drinks to sip outside on a warm day. The non-drinkers can enjoy a selection of Mocktails which include the Mediterranean Breeze, a blend of fresh raspberries, lychee juice, fresh lime and almond syrup. Lebanese wines and Lebanese beers are also aplenty!
Coffees lovers will be thrilled at Liban’s very own Turkish coffee cart. Authentic coffee is made in front of guests on the sand burner and served in hand-crafted cups. For a twist on the classic, Liban offers unique flavours such as Nutella or cardamom and saffron. Liban’s Turkish coffee is served with sticky dates to perfectly round off the meal.
Photos by Simon Burrell