Gulf Insider reviews Reem Al Bawadi, an award-winning restaurant at Ramada City Centre Bahrain.
Great food taken with great company is one of the pleasures of life. This is exactly what we experienced when we went to Reem Al Bawadi to try the authentic Middle Eastern cuisine.
Reem has a cozy, elegant atmosphere decorated in a traditional way. The attention to detail is simply stunning as the décor and the uniforms of the servers matched the menu as well—the restaurant is a peek at the magnificent culture of the Levant.
A lot of the food is for sharing which is great for families. In addition, the restaurant is separated into smoking and non-smoking sections*. There is also a terrace where you can dine al fresco in the evenings.
We opted to sit in the smoking section so we have a fabulous view of the sea. Our host Maryam walked us through the extensive menu and said that Reem is known for its classic Middle Eastern dishes especially the mezze and grills, although there are also international flavors to suit every palate.
Our party of four ordered a mix of hot and cold mezzes including moutabal, hummus with shawarma, and the quintessential fattoush plus a dish of spicy chicken liver. On the side we decided to try the spinach fatayer, which is a well-known street food. Maryam encouraged us to try the grills as this is the essence of Middle Eastern cooking. And we obliged by ordering something a little out of the ordinary—the khash khash kabab.
When the food came, the table was overloaded! Just the mezzes alone already made for one heavy meal. We jokingly said that we should have stopped ordering once the appetizers were done.
The mezzes were simply delicious. In a country where hummus is already an afterthought, you would think that it will be ordinary in every restaurant. Not so in Reem. The hummus and the moutabal here is creamy with just the right notes of tartness and lemon. It comes with fresh, fluffy bread that is a delight to dip into the sauces. The fattoush is zesty and flavorful with the crispy toasted pita bread which we loved. This went especially well with the chicken livers as it balanced out the spiciness of the dish. The spinach fattayer is a revelation (no wonder it’s a popular street food!)—crisp pies filled with spinach and flavored with sumac, the crunchy dough and the savory filling make a good combination. We can snack on this all day long!
We almost didn’t have room for mains but we had to try the khash khash kabab. This is 5 skewers of grilled minced lamb meat infused with fresh parsley, chilli sauce, and garlic– delightful take on the traditional mixed grill. We were so stuffed we decided to skip dessert and drinks which was a shame as there was a variety of traditional sweets which we wanted to try such as the muhallabia.
Overall, it was a great experience. This restaurant is highly recommended if you love Lebanese food. You can always burn off the calories by shopping in Bahrain City Centre afterwards.
*The restaurant boasts of an extensive shisha selection and also sells shisha accessories.