Meshwe: Authentic Lebanese Shawarma


It was like having a picnic when I entered the Pazar food park at Regalado avenue in Quezon City.  Wooden tables and chairs lined up the pathway filled with gravel. Dim lights and groovy music set a relaxing atmosphere. The place is beside the road but it was serene: Ideal place for a gathering of family and friends. 


I was greeted by the cheerful staff of Meshwe as I ordered food. I had Shawarma a number of times before but this was an exception as I am expecting an authentic Lebanese Shawarma: freshly roasted, chopped thinly, and its aroma satisfying my olfactory sense

Luck came in my way as chef Nathaniel Mounayer, half Filipino and half Lebanese owner of Meshwe, was there. Nathaniel grew up in the Middle East and studied Lebanese cuisines for two years. Meshwe means grilled in Lebanese, states Nathaniel. He feels that Middle eastern food isn't close to the real thing based from the way of cooking and ingredients used. This is his reason for setting up his own shop five years ago at Teacher's village in Quezon City.

Lebanese food has a sour profile while Filipino food is sweet. Their main attraction is the Chicken Shawarma sandwich (85 Php). I must say my first taste of Shawarma two decades ago was heavenly but quite different. I prefer this one over any other variant I have tried. What makes it more unique is the Arabic fries included in the sandwich together with the tender chicken meat and garlic sauce. The garlic sauce makes all the difference. To cater to the Filipino's love for rice, Chicken Shawarma plate (125 Php) is also served. The kind of rice included has onions, cinnamon, raisins, cumin and tomatoes.

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Chicken tender platter is four pieces of chicken with thick slices of French fries that is tender to the bite and can be dipped in the condiments: Garlic sauce, tomato ketchup, and chili sauce.

Filipinos are more accustomed to Beef Shawarma Sandwich (85 Php). Fresh parsley, mint, pickles, onions and Tarator sauce are wrapped in pita bread together with the tender beef strips. 

During Sundays and Saturdays, Farouj Meshwe (Roasted Chicken) is available. Served with rice or French fries, it is a hit and will surely satisfy your taste buds as it did mine.

I am personally a fan of Hummus since the day I tasted it. Paired with pita bread which is made in-house, it is perfect as an  appetizer. Hummus is creamy and nutty while pita bread is extra chewy. Additional pita will only cost you 10 Php. Sambousak (100 Php) are pastries in the shape of a triangle and comes with different fillings. Beef Sambousak has either beef or lamb while Cheese Sambousak has cheese filling.

They offer just a single dessert which is the Muhallabia (50 Php). Made with rose water that is not too sweet, and gives that distinct and creamy taste. This one has crushed Pistachios as its toppings for that extra crunchiness, taste and texture.

Meshwe  is located within Pazar Food Events and Food Hub at 26 Regalado Avenue, Fairview, Quezon City and open daily from 4pm to 10:30pm. 

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