“We wanted to create new dishes that would take you on a journey."
When it first opened in late 2015, Beirut cast a spell over Auckland with its enticing new style of Middle Eastern cuisine. Uplifting dishes of watermelon fattoush, Kingfish Kibbeh Nayeh and heady slow braised goat transported us to more exotic pastures. But with time for a change up, the ambient CBD eatery called upon its new Head Chef, Alexandre Vallée for the launch of a new menu.
Having worked in kitchens including that of Auckland institution The Grove, Vallée along with Executive Chef Sam Campbell have collaborated to unveil an ongoing series of enticing, authentic and refreshingly different dishes. While maintaining a handful of the classics, the pair has worked together to overturn two-thirds of the menu. “We wanted to create new dishes that would take you on a journey. We’ve been inspired by the cuisines from Turkey to Armenia, Lebanon and Georgia,” Campbell explains of the boundless concept that is Middle Eastern food.
With eye-popping servings of Koofteh Tabrizi (an Iranian take on meatballs that feature the tang and texture of dried fruit and nuts), mouth-watering hāpuka that sits atop a bed of ginger garlic crumble, and a flavour-packed, meat-free baba ganoush to replaces its former iteration (that included sausage), the tantalising new dishes are calling upon us to get reacquainted with the Fort Street gem.
85 Fort St
(09) 367 6882