T-Marbouta has everything you want from a café: excellent Lebanese food, coffee, lemonade, Wi-Fi, plus books and board games. There’s a colourful and cosy garden, soft lighting, low tables and a couple of sofas in the corners. It’s one of my favourite places at any time of day because it’s a welcome escape for a bit of calm and quiet. It’s set at the back of a courtyard off Hamra main street, and as soon as you enter you feel you’re miles away from the traffic and noise.
Prices are moderate and servings are generous here, and I recommend pretty much everything on the menu. Some of my favourite dishes are the vegetarian mezze, including the pumpkin, tomato or lentil kibbeh. The batata harra (spicy potatoes) are some of the best I’ve had in Beirut. The café also has a daily dish to choose from, with vegan options on Mondays and Thursdays.
T-Marbouta has a cultural space where it hosts talks, film screenings and concerts on occasion; check the Facebook page for updates.