Debs w Remman

We’ve fallen for Medina Centrale’s Lebanese restaurant Discuss this article

2016_1_debs
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It may seem unseemly to start by spouting an ode to mixed grill, but we’re sticking to our guns. The house special at Debs W Remman deserves poetry in its honour. Lamb chops, chicken and beef chunks, and minced meat koftas are mildly seasoned then grilled to moist perfection. Nothing is out of the ordinary here… no eccentric detail or ingredient to make the dish different. But in its sheer simplicity, this restaurant achieves excellence; it has mastered the art of keeping it real.

The three cold mezzes we order could not delight us any more if they were presented on diamond-studded platters. Top of the list is moussaka: eggplant chunks grilled and folded into a tomato sauce with aromatic fried onions. An entire bulb of baked garlic rounds off the plate and sends it into umami overdrive. The hummus, smooth and creamy, has a beautiful proportion of chickpea to olive oil and tahini. While the fattoush introduces chopped parsley and scallions for some extra punch, with pomegranate molasses binding it together.

It seems fitting that pomegranate molasses makes multiple appearances in our meal. Debs is the Arabic word for molasses, while remman, as you might have guessed, is pomegranate. This versatile liquid shines in the makanek appetiser. The miniature sausages swim in this rich, gooey sauce, absorbing their honey-like qualities.

The molasses also turn out to be a saving grace when it helps rescue some chalky fried kibbeh, the only real low point.

Once we’ve finished our savoury selection, the server appears a with a platter holding bowls of halva, carob molasses and tahini. He mixes them on our plates and instructs us to try it with warm bread. This is the first time we’ve encountered “halawe mchalale”; sweet, fragrant and tart, the sesame notes make this “candy floss sandwich” the best surprise of the meal.

We don’t notice that it’s been over two hours since we entered for a quick lunch. The dulcet tones of Fairuz, the sunlight in this bright, cheerful dining room filled with patchwork furniture and a wall of potted flowers has made this one of the most enjoyable, un-fussy meals we have had in a while.

The bottom line An excellent Lebanese spot that has mastered simplicity.

By Time Out Doha staff
Time Out Doha,

Time Out reviews restaurants anonymously and pays for meals. Of course, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or independence of user reviews.

Details

  • Location: The Pearl-Qatar, Doha
  • Tel: 4456 8374
  • Travel: Andalucia Building BO7, Medina Centrale
  • Cuisine: Lebanese
  • Times: Open daily 9am-1am

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