From bifteke kebabs to Greek keftedes and boozy Italian desserts, miss at your peril…
There’s more to kebabs than a 3am donor takeaway - and Bab is out to prove it. Fresh and healthy, their ‘babs’ showcase this misunderstood meal at its most vibrant. Flatbreads are made from scratch, cooked on a robata grill for that subtle charcoal flavour, and heaped with all manner of fillings: from barbecued monkfish to pork souvlaki and halloumi. Add in local ingredients and homemade marinades, and you have a ‘kebab worth sitting down for.’
Located just off Stevenson Square, Bab is a relative newcomer to the Northern Quarter dining scene. But it’s already won many over (including us) with its unique brand of Mediterranean cuisine; where chefs serve up Greek, Italian and Levantine dishes from an open theatre kitchen.
Chef creativity and a focus on seasonality mean the menu changes regularly, which happily means new dishes to try out. We popped in recently to do just that, and discovered some unmissable newcomers…
First up, kanat chicken wings. Bab’s staple is kebabs, but you’ll also find a diverse meze (small plates) section: from octopus with sumac to radicchio…and now these Turkish-style wings. Marinated in herbs and spices, then skewered and chargrilled, they’re a succulent blend of smoky and sweet; served with a creamy Gorgonzola yogurt.
Another new meze sensation is tomato keftedes, fried tomato and feta balls that hail from the whitewashed island of Santorini. Seasoned with fresh herbs, and served with refreshing tzatziki, we can understand why they’re a beloved Greek appetiser.
Onto kebabs, and two new additions. Bifteke is another Greek favourite, featuring a grilled mix of minced beef and feta (bound to be a great combo). Accompanied by pickled red onion and cucumber, and a drizzle of caramelised garlic labneh, it reflects Bab’s talent at blending texture and flavour for ultimate effect. Flat iron steak is also a belter, served with wild garlic and hazelnut alongside earthy beetroot.
Now babs make for a filling meal, but we can always make room for pud. A lesson in short but sweet (quite literally), the new desserts menu features two equally refreshing options: Grandpa Green’s ice cream - available in sour cherry sorbet, pistachio and Turkish Delight - and an ‘affogato’ upgrade. Best served with pistachio, this take on the Italian ‘drowned’ dessert features ice cream, Ron Aguere caramel rum and a shot of espresso. It’s up to you whether you mix them together or drink your bevvies separately but we can vouch that caramel rum and pistachio ice cream is heaven in a glass.