Last Friday night we braved the masses in the streets of Rosalie and after parking what seemed like a million miles away we walked back to Nash Street where the restaurants are located. Our destination was Rouj Modern Lebanese, a family owned casual restaurant which is clearly immensely popular. Bookings on weekends are at either 6pm or 8pm sittings, and we managed to nab the last table at 8pm. The restaurant is BYO and conveniently there is a bottle shop two doors up.
We were greeted by a fairly gruff Lebanese man who thought he was quite funny, and after clearing a table that was apparently meant for us, he never showed us to it… so we sat there anyway.
The food is best described as comforting and full of flavour and features lots of traditional favourites like baba ghanouj, various pastries, fattoush and kebabs.
For starters we shared the trio of dips ($15.50), hommus, baba ghanouj and labneh served with pita bread, olives and pickles. The baba ganouj was a clear standout, very smoky flavoured, whilst the hommus was very smooth and the labneh quite tart. Our only gripe was there wasn’t enough pita bread for the amount of dip, we were offered more but then our plates were cleared rather than bringing out more bread!
Cheese fingers were our other shared starter (3 for $11.50). These were delicious, light pastry filled with haloumi, feta, onion, parsley and spices. We wished we had ordered a double serve.
Definitely come to Rouj with plenty of room in your stomach, by this time I was worried I wouldn’t be able to get through my main.
L’s Seayadiye ($28.50) was a panfried barramundi, served with brown rice, caramelised onion, cashews, pistachios, pinenuts, a side of tabouli and lemon. We were a bit concerned that the fish looked somewhat dry, but this appearance was quite decieving, the fish was very moist and succulent. I even really liked it, surprising as I am not usually a seafood eater.
My sister and I both had the Shawarma platter ($27.50), thin slices of marinated rib fillet served with tabouli, tahini, pickles and pita bread. My sisters platter came out with fattoush instead of tabouli and we swapped, as she preferred the tabouli whilst I wanted the fattoush. The meat was quite tasty and rich in spices, but I found it a bit dry in places and couldn’t quite get through it all as predicted. The addition of pomegranate seeds was a great idea, adding a little pop of tart flavour which cut through the yoghurt and meat.
If you can brave parking in this area, you must pop in and give Rouj a go, its definitely one of the better Middle eastern cuisine restaurants in Brisbane. I felt pricing was a bit high for my main, service was sometimes inattentive, but the menu seems pretty solid. Must try are the cheese fingers!!
CRouj Modern Lebanese Shop 3, 21 Nash Street Rosalie Ph 3367 2210 Open 7 days, Lunch and Dinner www.rouj.com.au