Revisiting the Golden Age of Lebanon at Ayam Elezz @ The Mall, Dubai
Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day..shall travel anywhere for breakfast ....so when I was asked to review the breakfast platter at Ayaam Elezz, I was looking forward to it . I had'nt really ever had a traditional Lebanese breakfast before and was definitely in for a surprise.
At the Entrance ....
Located at The Mall, at Jumeirah Beach road, at Umm Sequiem, Dubai which overlooks the Burj Al Arab and Jumeira Beach hotel, it offers traditional and authentic Lebanese food recreating the Golden Age of Lebanon- the 60's and 70's ...as the name of this eatery suggests, giving you a taste of what your grandmother would cook and you would think its magic!
Stepping in ....
I felt as if I have entered a living room in a Lebanese home and the outside seating has been made to look at a traditional Lebanese garden in a home .
Various artifacts adorn the spaces , like an old typewriter, a gramophone, LP Records of the famous composer , Elias Rahbani,small teapots, radiators, cameras, an old suitcase by the door ,a meat processor, shishas and old cola bottles...they just transport you to a bygone era.
Mohamed A., the Floor Manager, greeted and seated us with a warm smile , serving us a cooling drink that according to him no one serves in Dubai -Lemonade Batrouniye , Fresh Lemon , oranges ,sugar ,with grated ice. This comes from Batroun , a coastal city in Northern Lebanon which is one of the oldest cities in the world and its special because it is hand squeezed , making it very refreshing .It's a must have!
Very Very Refreshing!
And then he introduced us to one of the best ever looking Lebanese platters ever ...placed on a beautiful silver tray were small dishes containing fresh and colorful foods.
To start with were fried eggs , which were scrambled in a way well done, zaatar manakesh rolls- a treat for zaatar lovers, two kinds of Labneh; the labneh balls with sesame seeds on top which is made of goat milk are usually found soaked in olive oil jars and the other was fresh dollops of plain Labneh. You could make out the difference in taste and maturity .
The foul was my favourite , one of the most flavourful dishes on the platter- made of fresh fava beans and chickpeas with fresh garlic, lemon,cumin and olive oil.
There was a cheese platter with Akawi, haloumi , slivers of dried but very juicy apricots and walnuts . In 2 dipping bowls were the tahina and another called debes wa tahini or tahini with carob molases , is nutty, dark, creamy and earthy ..well it tastes a lot like a lot like Nutella!
There were olives, cucumber sticks, fresh mint leaves and cherry tomatoes. 2 dipping bowls consisted of olive oil and zaatar in which pita bread can be dipped in succession and savoured.
And lastly apricot and blackberry jam on the side. A fresh basket of pita is served alongside to dip into these delights.
This is a breakfast platter for two is served with orange juice and tea , costing Aed 86 - inclusive of the unique tastes and experiences
Truly for those who miss their grandmothers cooking and who love to start their day with very sweet memories.