I stared with disbelief at the message on my mobile, it read, “Game for some Lebanese food on Sunday?”
Lebanese food and Chennai?!?
The combination sounded like Indian president and real power. Never the less, knowing the sender of that message very well, I responded “yes” with doubts in my mind. For whenever I tried eating anything exotic in Chennai, I had ended up searching in vain and stuffing myself at a local Chettinad joint. The power of Chettinad food culture is so overwhelming that even pizzas and burgers come in Chettinad variety here.
It took us quite sometime to locate the place, but finally we found it, on the road opposite IIT (Gandhi Mandapam Road) before the bridge on Adyar river. “Cedars â€“ a multi cuisine Mediterranean restaurant” the title read. Hmm..
I was pleasantly surprised to find the place to be quite spacious and big. The walls are decorated with photographs from Lebanon and other Mediterranean countries. The dÃ©cor itself is simple and charming. Smooth and unobtrusive Arabian music filled the air.
We settled down and started going through the exhaustive menu, lots of options for authentic Italian, Lebanese food are there. A waiter presented himself before us and asked us what we would like to have. We were surprised again to find that he is speaking good English and capable of explaining various dishes / beverages to us.
We started out with HumMus, a chickpea paste made by adding lemon and
ginger garlic juices along with pita bread. We also ordered few drinks to go with it, most of them are house specialties like a date syrup or a refreshing lemon/mint juice. The waiter has been kind enough to explain each dish as he bought along.
I have learnt that the food doesnâ€™t make you heavy since they donâ€™t use oil or creams. It made of olive oil.
After the starters we ordered an exotic kebab based dish and some rice. We were told that they have hookah as well, since neither of us smoke we let it go. Despite being a little high on the cost, the place proved to be worth every bit,
All in all it was wonderful experience, for once I didnâ€™t have to share the table with another party or raise my voice for some Sambhar.
Going there: Cedars is on Gandhi Mandapam Road, on the left side if you are coming from Anna university / IIT.
Must Haves: Jelab / Mint Dew / Shawarma / HumMus / Hookah if you like
Related Links: The world on a platter, Eating the Lebanese Way, Lebanese Cuisine (Wiki page with cross links to other foods/beverages), the image is from Hindu
Also Read: Date with my plate, Lessons in Pricing from Murugan Idli Shop, Best Eatouts in Mumbai