There is a new place in town and no, it’s not named after Barbara Windsor…
From the people behind the glorious meat emporium Bread Meats Bread comes a new kebab shop … STOP RIGHT THERE, I know what you are thinking – the drunken stumblings, strips of greasy lamb, dubious salad, thin runny sauce, the cold sodden lump you can’t stomach to even touch the next day – ‘Babs is NONE of these things!!
Self-billed as “Kebabs. Done right” what we were sampling was “Charcoal-fired Gourmet Kebabs Made Using Ethical & Local Scottish Seasonal Produce” and I’ll cut to the chase; the short version of this review need only require me to say that ‘Babs has taken the humble kebab to a new level of deliciousness, thrown in a slew of other tasty middle eastern inspired dishes (and added my favourite new burger in town!) and you should definitely check it out when it opens … which is TODAY! NOW! GO GO GO!!
Still here? You may as well keep reading then.
As soon as you walk through the door into the wonderful space that beckons you inside you are whisked you away to the sultry warmth of an autumn evening on the Bosphorus. Cosy without feeling cramped, I loved the decor and modern middle eastern vibe – think BMB West End, rather than the bustling city centre venue – and was eager to see how well the food fared.
We were there for a preview prior to their opening night and were treated to samples from their menu, and I’ll happily concede that I think they are on to a winner. Taste wise everything I tried, and I tried everything more than once if I could, was superb. The meats were smokey without being overwhelming, rich meats were succulent and well flavoured, the salads were fresh and full of flavour, and of the 10 or so dishes I tried I only rated one as ‘ok’ everything else was good to ‘oh my god this is delicious’.
We also got to see the menu which is even more extensive and it’s clear that ‘Babs will become a reliably good place to take people be it for lunch or dinner. A great selection on offer and some desserts to die for, backed by some great cooking, what else do you need? Plus it’s handily placed on West Nile Street in the heart of the city.
One thing is clear from talking to the owners, this is very much a labour of love. You could tell by the way they talked us through what was in each dish, how excited and passionate they were and how clearly, and rightly, proud of the ingredients and dishes they were sharing with us. Given how successful their sister venture – Bread Meats Bread – has been I can only presume that ‘Babs will soon by featuring on Top 10 lists of places to eat, I know it’s already in mine.
Also published on Medium.