Wednesday, June 27, 2007


Mon 25 June 2007

As you may recall, Monday was rather wet. I work with a lot of people who live quite a long way away from Leeds so the office emptied rather quickly. Rather responsibly, I went outside, ran around in the rain for about an hour and took a lot of photos. Which was fine, until I realised I was back in the office with a sodden jacket and jeans drenched to the thighs. The walk back into town was rather cold and soggy.

After some essential chores, a couple of beers at North were in order (ticking a few off the birthday card) and before we knew it I was ready for something to eat. I suggested Akbar's, but we'd had curry the night before, so we traipsed over to Thai Cottage, but they were closed. Back towards Fuji Hiro* (open but not serving) and finally into Fairuz.

Fairuz is in a strange location, rather tucked away and with the feeling of almost being in the basement of an office block. We've been meaning to go for ages, but have just never got around to it. Fortunately, on Monday night, even though it was late and there was just one diner finishing off his coffee, the sole staff member on board was happy to serve us.

Lebanese food suits itself very well to loads of small dishes and eating for hours, but, at 10pm on a Monday night just one dish was called for. I could not help but choose the chicken shewarma and Andy opted for lamb neck.

The shewarma was delicious. It was flavoured with mint and oregano and was served on the most beautiful, fine, light, crispy bread, with a lovely lemon-garlic yogurt like sauce. It came with a simple salad. And for around £7.50 it was a generous portion. Andy's lamb (around £10), while it looked a lot smaller, was absolutely gorgeous. It was so tender and was spiced with clove and cinnamon. It was served with similarly flavoured rice and some salad. On first appearances I won, but after we sampled each other's food we couldn't decide on a winner.

If you can't make decisions like that there are two 'all in' type menus and at lunchtime the restaurant offers a buffet. They also offer an early bird menu between 5 and 7. We both thought the food was lovely, and we're also full of admiration for the one man, who seated us, took our orders, brought our drinks and cooked our food.

So - it was bad luck on several counts that actually meant we visited Fairuz for the first time, but now we have been, we'll definitely be making trips back.

1. Fairuz, Fairfax House, Merrion Street, Leeds, LS2 8JU, ph: 0113 243 4923

*We visited both Thai Cottage and Fuji Hiro back in April and loved them both.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its a shame about the location but glad you liked Fairuz, Ive been telling anyone who will listen to try it out. The starters are great too, I think I prefer having a table full of them compared to a main course.

7:15 pm  
Blogger Alex said...

I think the mezze route is the way we'll be going next time (although that shewarma was very good ...).

8:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Following the recommendations here and being a huge fan of Lebanese food I decided to give this a try. Location and look were not the best and we almost turned away on arrive, but we decided to give it a try... after all it's the food that counts... but I wish we had turned around.

This really is NOT authentic Lebanese food. Some of the starts were really nice, but others weren't so good, and mayonnaise with Falafel?!

The lamb neck I can't dispute was very tastey, but again not massively authentic. The mixed grill was a big disappointment, especially for the cost! And the Shish Tawook, well you'd expect cubes of chicken marinaded for 24 hours and char grilled... we got a small breast pan fried with some spices. I'm sorry but this was just not Lebanese and was expensive, over £100 for 3 of us!

8:01 pm  
Blogger Alex said...

Hi Adrian - I have to confess I've never been to Lebanon so I can't vouch for the authenticity of the food. But you're right - mayo with felafel sounds wrong!

I am quite surprised your bill was so hefty - I think the most I've seen the bill come to there is around £20 a head. But I haven't been since April so it's possible prices have gone up.

It's a shame you weren't impressed by your meal.

10:43 am  

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