Habibi madeush (photo by SZ)

Habibi, a restaurant where you can finally taste delicacies based on the original recipe of Oriental, Middle Eastern cuisine with an emphasis on Lebanese varieties of hot and cold meats, meat dishes, just perfect but not delicious desserts, enjoy nargilish and soon opened in bright Lebanese wines above Gajnica before that month and for every recommendation.

Darling/dear, love..., any translation for habibi you choose not to make a mistake because it is the incredible kindness and convenience of the waiters as they lead you to the table, and the warm hosts answer all yours, and those "stupid" questions about Lebanese food, wine and us still a good part of the unknown culture. Farah Khalil and her business partner and spouse Fares Hadad the owners are not only this restaurant but also Byblos catering Zagreb, te Habibi Orient Middle East delicacies in the Savoy Road 94. In the shop, besides vegetables, fruits, meat and other oriental products you can not find anywhere else you can prepare yourself Turkish coffee and learn more about the favorite specialty you've been eating on a journey.

Farah moved to Croatia two years ago, and as he loves to cook for family and friends, opening restaurants with the offer of exotic dishes according to the original recipes

Farah Khalil
Habibi - Farah Khalil (photo by SZ)

The right ingredients seemed like a great idea. Judging by the happy smiles of guests after full enjoyment of Middle Eastern specialties and the need for table reservation, especially at the end of the week and at weekends, when accompanied by food, wine and Shishu you can also enjoy traditional oriental dances - a new point on Zagreb's gourmet map is a hit! In addition to food, Farah made efforts to bring guests closer to Lebanon and Beirut and through the well-known motifs painted by the walls of the restaurant: an hour from the main square in the center of Beirut, the famous Rouche cliff, so the oldest tree in the world ...

Apart from the cozy, hostile atmosphere in Habibi, we were particularly impressed with what we came for - food choice: Lebanon says that for every day of the year they can prepare a new, different dish. This is not surprising because besides a large choice of vegetables and fruits - a real paradise for vegetarians - the Lebanese are especially known as fish lovers but also meat. So do not be surprised when the table is filled with plates filled with salad and cold meats. And that's just the beginning ...

We all liked to taste a little and soon our table began to fill bowls and plates, first with salads.

Fattoush, salad of fresh green salad, chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, portions, minds and spices spiced with olive oil, lemon juice and sumac spice and a supplement of crispy roasted arabic bread served on a plate in the form of a bridge is an excellent introduction to the traditional prayer process. We left for the second time tabouleh, salad of finely chopped tomatoes, parsley, lard and bulgur flavored with olive oil and lemon juice.

The prayer line is really magnificent and you can not resist it warm pie bread, an oriental version of soft bunks that quickly disappear from the basket while you use them as a teaspoon as you tease them savory Bejrutski humus made from tahinias, angry pasta, parsley and salsa pasta, already known to us baba ganuš of grilled vegetables, moujadaru lamb and rice salad dressed with caramelized or mouhamaru, another glorious salad with nuts and peppers. We must not forget about it labneh, yogurt salad flavored with olive oil, chopped dried menta and garlic that perfectly serves to cool the palate after spicy sauces.

And just when you think you can snoop a little (the meze does not apply to the table!), New plates and dishes continue to go: roasted sambousek rolls filled with 3 cheese types, so warak inab b'zeit, grape vines filled with rice, tomato and parsley cooked in olive oil and lemon juice and of course falafel, the best croquette of salsa with tahini in Zagreb. And cheese lovers come to yours because they do Halloumi, a grilled cheese grilled on a fragrant butter once again melted in the mouth, and the mesolives just come in line: for starters, there are roasted pork loaves of ground lamb and bulgarian with pines (kibbeh) so perfect marinated chicken liver in lemon juice and butter and seasoned with lamb šiš (kafe meshwi). If you thought it was barely over here - you were cheating: farouj meshweh - soft chunks of chopped chicken and lamb chops are in the dead race for the title of the most fat piece of meat. The hosts with a smile confirm that the secret is in the marinade, but they should not tell us in what way and why it was prepared because we should not leave them home then!

Of course, we could not taste all the dishes, and we mostly avoided the buns filled with vegetables, lamb, feta and herbs, and we did not try hard Lebanese pizza (lahem b'ajine) with ground meat, onions, tomatoes and pine nuts. Main courses such as chicken or lamb shawerme (roast chunks of chicken breasts in dough pieces with tomato sauce and garlic) this time remained in the kitchen.

That is why we left Lebanon baklava, surprisingly unpretentious, which came to our place as we sipped coffee with cardamom uz Shishu with a pineapple flavor that Hodor, originally from Syria, keeps warm for more than three hours, which is proof that he is a true master because most of the nargile barking finishes after half an hour.

Dimming nargilys in comfortable pull-outs, with the exception of coffee, can also be enjoyed in oriental teas, but also in Arabic dishes such as Jallaba from dates and grapes to you Kazouziju, marzipan fruit juice from tamarind.

We also went back to the second day when the belly dance program was also performed with the dancers who trained their seduction skills in Egypt, in some of the most prestigious abdominal dance schools.

We look forward to the news from Habibi, because the hosts also announced the fish specialties that are particularly proud of, as well as the famous Lebanese wine. Due to the affordable prices (the 20-35 honeycomb, and the main dish with a maximum of 90), Habib already has regular guests, which we will be more and more ...

Shukran Habibi!