It might not seem like the most obvious choice for the festive period but Comptoir Libanais’ Christmas Feast Menu (£24.95 per person) has plenty to recommend it, not only the wide and varied selection of dishes, but also the quality of the food on offer.
To start was a suitably ‘feasty’ mezze selection of smoothly rich Hommos, tastily seasoned Falafel & Green Tahina, refreshingly piquant Tabbouleh and Beetroot Labné. For those of a less vegetarian persuasion, the Turkey Kibbeh – cracked wheat parcels filled with minced turkey, pine nuts and onions served with cranberries and mint yoghurt sauce – was a delicious nod to traditional Christmas flavours. Accompanied with plenty of pitta bread to mop up all the delicious dips, we were beginning to worry that we wouldn’t have enough space for anything else!
Having recovered somewhat from our abundant starters, for our mains we opted for the Lamb Kofta & Spiced Tahina, which proved to be perfectly seasoned and came accompanied with vermicelli rice that did a wonderful job of soaking up the plethora of flavours; and the Salmon Shakshuka, which featured beautifully marinated salmon in a nicely warming spiced tomato, onion, pepper and chilli stew. Just perfect for frosty winter evenings.
Despite having already enjoyed such a generous amount of food, we still found room for the creamy Spiced Christmas Rice Pudding, which added to the festive feel with the addition of delicate Christmassy flavours such as orange blossom and cinnamon, before finishing proceedings with Rose Mint Tea & Baklawa. Phew!
Set in brightly lit and welcoming surroundings, and served by friendly, attentive staff, a visit to Comptoir Lebanais could quite easily become a new Christmas tradition for this particular food critic.
To book a table visit: www.comptoirlibanais.com/locations/leeds/.