Head Chef Tom Sarafian, who has rattled the pots and pans at Rumi, MoMo and St John in London, now leads the crusade to modernise Middle Eastern flavours in this small, dimly lit venue at the end of Punch Lane.
Black tables, red leather banquettes and deep red curtains add to the atmosphere, with superb, attentive, almost psychic service from Ali Vlassopoulos. There is a small but excellent selection of wines by the glass, as well as some special cocktails.
The small menu offers a range of share dishes. As a prelude, guests are presented with a fresh raw vegetable from a local farm, such as sugar snap peas – crisp, chilled and with amazing flavour. Fresh okra is dipped in chickpea flour and cumin then lightly fried and served with a lemon wedge – simple, crisp, aromatic and well balanced. Fish fatteh is a take on a traditional breakfast dish. In this version, lightly fried fish fillets are layered with herbs, labna, chickpeas and almonds – sweet, sour and creamy – and served with salty flatbread.
PSST! In a hurry? Check out the lunchtime counter meal available at the bar.