The Best Middle Eastern Restaurants in Singapore
Eat & Drink | April 01, 2016
Middle Eastern restaurants are real carnivore crowd pleasers. So meat eaters, don’t miss out on the wonderful flavors in those places.
Being the cuisine of various countries, but Middle Eastern cuisine, to many people, is about Levantine, Persian and Turkish food. And charcoal-grilled meat is the soul of a Middle Eastern meal.
Locals who wish to explore new viands and visitors who want a quick fix of kebab can channel your inner cavemen with the large meat platters at these recommended Middle Eastern restaurants. For a taste of Lebanese, visit Kazbar or Levant. Foods at Shiraz and Shabestan will show you the best of Persian cuisine.
You can expect giant food portions, designed for sharing, great shisha, and fascinating belly dance performances in most of the restaurants introduced in this list.
- Best lamb shank Biryani in Singapore: Meat is tender, falls off the bone and melts in the mouth. The whole lamb shank was indeed “stewed to perfection” complemented with the best biryani rice ever cooked on the island. It tastes perfect and unique in its own way. A connoisseur might even notice that the distinct sweet taste and aroma of the spices could be a mix of other Middle Eastern cuisines instead of being exclusively Lebanese.
- Notable appetiser platter: As with any Middle Eastern fare, a platter of mixed appetisers is ever-present. You can’t possibly skip this because most of the top foods are on the platter such as the hummus, moutabal, and tabboula. Thank goodness all appetisers are made from fresh ingredients at Levant so the greens and dips taste clean and light in the mouth.
- Good selections of tapas, stews, and grills: Suitable for sharing, Levant has traditional tapas like lamb ball, smoked salmon/beef, or arayes on its menu, while fans of grilled food might want to get their hands on chicken yogurt kebab, tikka, or the generous seafood grill platter. Either of the two, you can then pair it with Ghormeh Sabzi stew and enjoy that warm, fuzzy feeling in your stomach.
- Tasty and authentic Lebanese cuisine: When it comes to knowing which country has the best Middle Eastern cuisine, the consensus says it’s Lebanon. If you do agree, then look no further than Kazbar! They have a set lunch menu for S$19.50 and an extensive a la carte menu. From Hummus, Baba Ghanoush, Falafel, Kebabs, Shawarma to Um Ali, the restaurant has got them covered and all taste authentic as they come.
- Copious food choices for both vegans and meat eaters: One of the reasons why vegans will not walk out of the restaurant hungry! Plant-based eaters can order salads in large servings such as the best-seller Tabouleh, Fattoush, and Feta Cheese Salad and then opt Mousaka or Couscous Khothar or Potato & Cawliflower Stew for the main. Carnivores can start with cold mezze platter (hummus, moutabel, mohammarah, babaganoush, tabouleh, pita bread) or hot mezze platter (falafel, cheese borek, spinach borek, sambousek and kibbeh) for only S$24 and indulge in the large selection of charcoal-grilled foods.
- Best Tabouleh outside of Lebanon: First-timers must order this if you want to have a complete Middle Eastern culinary journey. At Kazbar, this salad demonstrates perfect balance between the tanginess of lemon zest, mint, and tomatoes and the aroma of onion and parsley. Vegetarians will surely find it a perfect salad dish to add in to your daily food-list!
- Mint-flavoured drinks: Middle East natives understand how minty drinks have earned its spot in their local cuisine. Imagine dealing with extreme heat most days of your life in Middle East? With that, a glass of mint tea or Kazbar Mint (S$14) can serve as a refreshment. So for the natives, foreigners must try this beverage.
- Lively bar at night: Listening to loud Arabian music in the background can get you in the mood for a TGIF party with friends. Swing by Kazbar for kebabs, a wide variety of liqueur concoctions, and entertainment. Belly dancers perform live at the restaurant from 21:30 to 22:30 every Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
- One of the best places to enjoy authentic Persian cuisine in Singapore: Enjoy the real flavors from Iran with traditional hummus, selection of mezzes, char-grilled kebabs and kubideh, succulent shwarmas, fragrant rice dishes and Persian stews. Surely a riot of flavours, colors and textures that is nothing less than a feast for senses!
- Serving best Kebabs in Singapore: Served with saffron-flavoured Basmati rice, grilled tomatoes and fresh vegetables, the succulent Halal kebabs here are to die for. Meat eaters will get excited with the restaurant’s extensive selection of charcoal-grilled kebab. Go with the Shiraz Special Platter Combo (for four persons) if you wish to taste as much varieties as possible.
- A little Middle Eastern world right at Clarke Quay: Situated in the vibrant Clarke Quay, Shiraz is a great choice if you want to explore some great middle-eastern food together with regal Iranian hospitality, shishas, Persian music beats and belly dance.
- An extensive menu of authentic Persian cuisine: Shabestan’s menu presents the best of Persian cuisine. Whether you try their traditional charcoal-grilled Lamb Kubeideh (ground lamb kebab) or classic Persian rice dishes cooked with saffron, nuts and berries, every dish unveils the goodness of scrumptious Persian food right in the heart of Singapore.
- Wholesome, flavoursome Shabestan Platter: If you want to know the best-seller item at this restaurant, then Shabestan Platter is the answer. The succulent charcoal-grilled lamb, chicken, beef and jumbo prawns beautifully presented on the plate will satisfy the craving of any meat eater. The food is Halal while food portions are generous.
- Persian saffron ice cream: This dessert (S$8) is a must try to complete your culinary experience at Shabestan. The combination of pistachio, cream and saffron in a special recipe will give you one of the best scoops of ice cream in your life.
- A memorable culinary experience by the riverside: Go for an alfresco dining to get an exciting dining experience. It is a perfect setting for a romantic date or to spend a leisurely evening with family and friends while relishing authentic Persian kebabs and some great wine.
- An exclusive private dining room for business meetings with a capacity to accommodate up to 26 persons. The luxurious room is fully equipped with free and unlimited Wi-Fi access and conference facilities to hold presentations and business meet-ups.