Garden Lebanon (Est. 2000) is one of the more well-established Middle Eastern eateries in Penang. Located in Tanjung Bungah, one of the more affluent neighborhoods in Penang, the restaurant is close enough to the beach-front hotels popular with tourists, as well as the large expat community living in the area.
My first time here, as I’d always inadvertently end up in Halab or Dandy for my Middle Eastern food fix nowadays.
Our dinner last night at Garden Lebanon turned out to be pretty good, actually. The service was warm and attentive.
For starters, we had an appetizer platter consisting of fooul (Egyptian fave bean dip), moutabel/baba ghanoush (eggplant dip), hommus (Levantine chickpea-tahini-olive oil-garlic dip), warak enab (Lebanese grape-leaves with rice stuffing), fattoush (Lebanese salad with pita chips) and pickled cucumbers-cauliflower-green peppers.
Kibbeh - deep-fried Lebanese beef croquettes, consisting of bulgur (cracked wheat) and minced beef, stuffed with onions and pine nuts.
For our main course, we ordered a sharing platter consisting of arayes with lamb (Lebanese pita bread with minced lamb stuffing), shish tawook (grilled skewers of marinated chicken chunks), shish kebab (grilled minced lamb), grilled chicken kebabs, grilled lamb chops, and grilled peppers, onions and tomatoes, with toum (Lebanese garlic dip) and chili sauce.
For dessert, we had a whole knafeh (cheese pie topped with crisp, shredded filo, drizzled with rose syrup, sprinkled with crushed pistachios). It was large enough to feed 8, but there was only 4 of us, so we took home half of it.
Finished off with some sweetened mint tea.
Taste-wise, the dishes we had at Garden Lebanon yesterday evening was pretty good, though I’d still go back to Halab and Dandy, perhaps through habit, and also my palate has been attuned more towards their cooking styles. But in terms of ambience, Garden Lebanon is tops. Service was also pretty much perfect here.
15, Jalan Tanjung Bungah, 11200 Penang, Malaysia
Tel: +604-891 7228
Opening hours: 12 noon to 10pm daily