Dine in or take away? The choice is yours at this new Landmark eatery 3 Reviews
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Wafi Gourmet has finally opened up that walled-off section of Landmark Mall and, since its arrival, we’ve been intrigued. With a deli-style selection of counters, it offers both an eat-in restaurant section, and a well-stocked grocery store-cum-takeaway area. Making our way through the maze of counters to get to the dining area, we get a chance to peruse what looks good that day at the dessert, mezze, meat and seafood counters.
The printed menu seems endless, with page after page of offerings from mezze both hot and cold to meat, fish and soup. It seems like a massive variety of food and, just as we’re beginning to wonder how on earth we’re going to be able to sample it all, our waiter lets us know that, while each mezze item is available on its own, there is also a mixed plate of four items, at QR9 per item. That sounds perfect and, after a quick glance at the mezze in the display case, we go for hoummus, mohammarah, eggplant with mushroom and zucchini with yoghurt. The hoummus is thick and creamy, and the mohammarah, a mix of peppers, tomato and sheer wonderfulness, is spicy without overpowering the other flavours. The eggplant with mushrooms is delightful, if slightly tricky to eat, and the zucchini with yoghurt is a surprise for palates more used to yoghurt being sweet and eaten for breakfast. This time around, it’s thick, creamy and refreshing, spiked with zucchini and providing a nice balance to the spicier dishes.
I’m a firm believer in judging a restaurant by its bread, and this one doesn’t disappoint: they take pita, a fairly bland staple, and make it a little special by serving it fresh, soft and warm from the oven. I just wish they’d included a few more pieces in the basket, as we had to ask for more to finish off the mezze.
Next up is mudardara, a mix of lentils and vegetables, and the mixed grill, while my dining companion, who’s fighting a cold, opts for the soup of the day – chicken this time. The soup is rich and creamy with a great, warming scent, while the lentils are surprising too for a simple grain.
The mixed grill is definitely worth the price, with its thick portions of kofta, chicken shish taook and lamb cubes. In contrast to the usual poor-quality grills available in mall restaurants, the meat is rich and tender, nicely spiced and plentiful. Service is also fast and reliable – it’s a quick stop, and the waiters seem committed to making sure that people are served in a timely fashion.
After this we stumble our way to dessert – having been seduced since we entered, walking past the dessert case. I try the mixed baklava, while my dining companion goes for the tiramisu at the suggestion of the waiter. The baklava is sweet and tasty, coming on a small plate and perfect with coffee – a selection of Middle Eastern sweets that are sure to give me a happy little cavity as a memento. The tiramisu comes served in a cup, and is closer to a pudding or parfait than real tiramisu, but quite nice nonetheless.
We may not have made the best choice on dessert, however, as I discovered several days later when a friend set out a plate of chocolate-covered dates, which immediately changed my life. She had picked them up from the vast selection offered at Wafi Gourmet. Already a date lover, I found the chocolate-covered ones to be pure, indulgent sweet bliss and will be going back for a box – hypothetically as gifts and for guests, but more than likely for covert snacking at my desk.
Overall, this is a solid choice for a quick bite mid-shop and an even better option for a work-day lunch. With solid service, quality food, and the possibility of picking up some groceries on the way out, we can
see ourselves coming here for lunch with colleagues, or even on our own. It’s the first place we’ve found where you can order small portions of mezze – ideal for a quick solo lunch or dinner.
The bill (for two)
1x soup of the day QR21
1x mudardara QR21
1x mezze (four items) QR36
1x mixed grill QR55
1x tiramisu QR19
1x mixed baklava QR28
1x cappuccino QR17
1x café latte QR12
2x water QR14
1x fresh lemonade QR28
Total (incl charges) QR251
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