Arabica Bar and Kitchen, Borough Market

Arabica business card

Arabica Bar and Kitchen is a restaurant which specialises in food from the Middle East (if you’re into that sort of thing you must try The Palomar by the way) and it’s based right in the heart of Borough Market.

The dining room sits under a huge railway arch making the space a rather charming one. The atmosphere matched that of the market; bustling and lively which was helped by the open kitchen and bar with stool seats, and not to forget, the loud music.

Outside

Inside

The menu was vast meaning there was plenty to choose from. We started with the Armenian style lahmacun (£6), which was a flatbread topped with spiced lamb, and the three cheese man’ousheh (£6) which was basically a cheesy garlic bread. Plenty of flavour was found in both.

Lamb

Cheese

The tarama, or whipped cod’s roe (£5.50), was unlike any taramasalata I’ve had before; here it was white and had the texture of polenta – I can’t stand polenta! The flavour however was absolutely delicious and it made for a great dip for the flatbread which was served in an Arabica paper bag.

Tarama

The semolina crumbed Cornish squid (£9) was a particular highlight with its succulent flesh and peppery coating. The beef and bone marrow kofte (£9.50) was also up there; the little balls of beef were served rare and had serious amounts of meaty flavour. The charred tomato and pepper provided the perfect sweet accompaniment for the richness of all that fatty bone marrow.

Squid

Kofte

The Label Anglais chicken wings (£7) were cooked perfectly; they had a crispy skin and moist flesh; I could have easily eaten another portion. There could have been a little more meat with the onglet and smoked barbecue salad (£9.50); for the price I thought the slices could have been a little thicker. Great taste though.

Wings

Onglet

The batata harra (£5) which were triple cooked potatoes, were an explosion of flavour, and so would you be if you’d been dunked in the fryer thrice and then mixed with sautéed peppers, onion, toasted garlic, chilli and coriander. Corr they were good.

Potatoes

We loved our lunch at Arabica; each dish exuded big, bold flavours meaning everything was most enjoyable. It could all add up quite quickly though if you’re pigs like us and order loads of plates (and the glass of pomegranate juice at £6.50), but it’s definitely worth a visit.

8/10

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3 responses »

  1. How much did you spend in total?

    Reply
  2. I am going tomorrow. Can’t wait.

    Reply
  3. I went last night and my bill was over £90 for two people. We weren’t pigs at all. All we ordered was 5 dishes and one very very miniture sized dessert and a bottle of wine. I just think everything is overpriced at this place. I get the concept of keeping portions small so you can try many different things. But they need to then make it less expensive. or increase their portion size. Which ever. But I can’t see this one lasting if they don’t review their portion size or the price.

    Staff though were friendly enough and very helpful. It’s a shame as I was looking forward to liking this place.

    Reply

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