18 November 2010

Rowda Ya Habibi: Lebanese Banquet, Newtown (9 Sept 2010)

101 King Street, Newtown NSW 2042

Cheap lebanese banquet

When a family run business has been going for 33 years they must be doing something right. The service counter looks very much like a take away shop but there's lots of seating out the back for large groups as well as upstairs where you can sit on a cushion in your own private room — although I find it quite uncomfortable to sit for any length of time. The reasonably priced Deluxe Mazza Banquet ($25 per person) comes with your typical banquet dishes you'd expect which won't leave you hungry. The Baba Ganooj and Hommos are decent but perhaps not the best I've had. The Tabouleh is maybe a little of the dry side tonight but still fine when mixed with the dips. You'll also receive the more substantial dishes of Ladies Fingers, Shis Kebab and Garlic chicken. I judge a Lebanese restaurant by their Falafel and these had a nice outer crunch but they're not as flavoursome as say Jasmins or even Lebanon & Beyond for that matter. If you've got a sweet tooth then containers of Turkish delight ($5) are available from the downstairs counter to take home. I've heard if you find the elusive yellow turkish delight their really good — unfortunately none were available. The no-nonsense service was a little hard to get used but the dishes were efficiently prepared and served quickly.

PROS: Plenty of seating, Take away available, Decent amount of take away choices, Vegetarian friendly dishes, Reasonably priced
CONS: No-nonsense service, Uncomfortable seating upstairs when sitting on a cushion with no back support and leg room, Toilet only had cake of soap
MUST TRY: Apparently the lemon turkish delight

Deluxe Mazza Banquet $25 per person

Baba Ganooj, Hommos, Bread


Ladies Fingers

Shis Kebab


Green beans

Garlic chicken and rice

Downstairs dining room at the back

Seating in front of the service counter

Counter display

Sweets display — Turkish delight ($5)

Toilet only has cake of soap available


Mel said...

I had my first experience here last month by getting a take away roll from downstairs. I LOVED it and loved the lady serving me, she was just so lovely. It's interesting to see what goes upstairs. I bought my sister some of the $5 Turkish Delight...the pink stuff, didn't know about the yellow stuff - I'll keep an eye out.

Rob said...

I've been going three for 33 years and have always loved the food. It ain't glamorous, but it is a great place for friends to meet.

Catherine said...

Rowda Ya Habibi is a Newtown institution. Cheap but awesome!

Simon Leong said...

hi melbatoast, i wish it was closer to home so i could get take away. they seem to have some nice choices available for a quick meal :-)

hi rob, wow you're a total devotee. good to hear it's been a very successful place for you and your friends to catch up :-)

hi catherine, there should be more places like this around :-)

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