The new taste of Asia brings spice to Beirut

The hottest thing to pop up in Beirut’s Clemenceau district is a new delivery and catering kitchen called JAI. The blood, sweat and tears of Beiruti-born Chef Wael Lazkani, Jai offers a little taste of South East Asia in the heart of Beirut. It officially launched in February 2013 and has fast become a firm favourite for locals looking for a fresh, unique (and well-priced) alternative to the usual Lebanese fare. The rare restaurant concept of a large, one-room kitchen open to the street allows passers-by to experience first-hand Asian cooking at its finest. Open from 11am to 11pm, JAI will deliver anywhere in the Beirut Municipal Area within 45 min. But for a really special experience call and reserve the chef’s table.

JAI

After working in Michelin star restaurants in Montreal, London and Geneva, Chef Lazkani returned to Lebanon to realize his dream of introducing a new culinary experience to the Lebanese community with a special emphasis on locally sourced ingredients and genuine flavours. After 3 years of intensive South East Asian recipe studies and ingredient research Jai Kitchen was born. JAI’s menu takes you on a tour of Asia, tantalizing your taste buds with dishes from India, Thailand, Vietnam and China. And Chef Lazkani has made sure to include all of the Asian favourites.

JAI

This Summer’s most popular dishes are: the Raita and poppadoms – crispy poppadoms with a fresh chickpea, cucumber and mint raita; three shrimp summer rolls – rice wraps with shrimp, noodles, lettuce and herbs served with sweet chilli sauce; spicy Thai beef salad – grilled beef fillet with lettuce, green onions, herbs and a spicy vinaigrette; and Singapore noodles – classic thin rice noodle dish with dry mild curry, shrimp and chicken.

So if you’re looking for a little something different when visiting Beirut, make sure you give JAI a call. If the locals have JAI’s number on speed-dial, than any discerning traveller should as well.

John-Christian Moquette is a Partner at IAVRA.

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Comments (1)

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  1. Karen says:

    That food looks and sounds just delicious. Food is one of the major reasons I travel. There is not a lot you can do to experience the heart of another culture like eating their food. It’s really a great experience and this restaurant looks like it won’t disappoint! Thanks for sharing!

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