Abd El Wahab is a Lebanese restaurant in the heart of upscale Belgravia, named after the street its sister restaurant is located on in Beirut. This branch is the first to open outside of the Middle East (with the others in Lebanon, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Cairo, Bahrain and Qatar) and is known for its authentic Lebanese menu.
The interiors are certainly fitting to its SW1 postcode with lots of natural light, a wall of plants and, if you look up, actual gold leaf on the ceilings! Located close to a lot of London’s embassies, we can imagine this becoming a diplomat’s go-to!
When it comes to the food, the menu is designed for sharing. We started with a selection of Mezza, or cold starters, including bread, hummus, tabbouleh and moutabal (chargrilled aubergine mixed with tahini and lemon juice). We would also recommend the Fattoush salad, a refreshing mix of greens, tomato, cucumber, sumac and toasted bread.
If it’s hot starters you’re after, try the cheese rolls, shook (spicy sausage) and pan fried eggs with Kawarma meat (a mix of scrambled egg and minced lamb). It sounds slightly strange but is surprisingly delicious! Just try not to fill up on all the Mezza (guilty) and save some room for mains.
As you would expect, the mains are based around grilled meat and fish. Options include giant prawns, lamb cutlets or chicken skewers. But if you can’t decide, the mixed grill is an option so you can try a bit of everything. We also liked the sound of the Arayess kafta, an Arabic bread stuffed with minced lamb – next time!
If you have room for a dessert, you can order a selection of pistachio baklava, which was sweet but not sickly – no mean feat for a dessert which is 90% honey! If you’re feeling adventurous, give the Ashtalieh a go. A rose-flavoured cream pudding topped with pistachio and spun sugar, it’s light and smooth but was a little too floral for our tastes.
If you find yourself in Belgravia with a craving for Middle Eastern food, Abd El Wahab could be your new go to restaurant.