The best thing about Sanobar Lebanese Restaurant in Bugis is the baklava, sticky and flaky, green pistachio oozing from the sides and a rich sauce drizzled delicately over the top. No, wait, the best thing has to be the creamy hummus – the real stuff, not from a tub, and surely some of the most authentic in Singapore. No, the best thing has to be the lovely staff, always attentive and friendly, and they offer expert advice on what to choose from the amazing mezze, mixed grilled meat and vegetarian menus at Sanobar on Bussorah Street. Actually, it’s impossible to decide which is the best between all the things this delicious, welcoming and genuine Lebanese restaurant has going for it. We say just go check it out and decide for yourself, you will not leave disappointed (or hungry)!
This is a nice break from the plethora of Asian food one might be too used to (and a little sick of, heh). The portions were quite generous. The four of us dining there were quite filled with just two main courses – the max combo mixed grill (chicken, mutton and beef) and seafood platter (mussels, prawns, squids, crayfish and fish), both coming with rice – and an entrée falafel with pita bread. I can’t say much about the falafel since it was the first time I’d tried any but it tasted great, crunchy and moist enough. The mutton kafta was delectable, easy on the chew and smell, but the chicken and beef pieces were a little too hard for me. Go easy on the salt for the beef too, please. The seafood platter was delicious enough but nothing out of this world. I must say I’m not a fan of mussels drenched in sweet-sour curry. Drinks wise, the mango juice I had was, unfortunately, rather bland, although it had real diced mango in it. I’d have preferred something sweeter. The mint lemonade was a joyous surprise. It tasted rather sour, and erm weird, at first, before we started eating anything, but proved to be an amazing concoction to wash the oil out of the meat, when the tart was balanced with the savoury. That said, it would be nice had the drinks been a little cheaper ($7.50 for a mango juice is rather too expensive to me). Indoor seats are limited – we were seated at the table right smacked against the glass pane that forms part of the sliding entrance door, which was a little uncomfortable for me. But that was compensated for by the nice cool air flowing down from the air conditioner right above us. While they had the occasional slip up, such as forgetting one item we ordered altogether, the crew members were friendly and cheerful. Quite sincere in wanting customers to enjoy their visit there, I would say. The overall ambience and pricing make it worth a visit if you want to try a different cuisine in a cosy intimate setting but not breaking the bank.
Portion was huge, food was good. Atmosphere was great in the middle of the Haji Lane area, with a beautiful view of the Masjid. Live band added some extra feel to the dining experience.