“Kebabs Worth Sitting Down For” – the claim that Bab lives by, and when they say sit, they don’t mean on the curb adjacent to the midnight taxi rank.
Found tucked away on Little Lever Street of the NQ, Bab’s servings are a far cry from the ‘babs you’ll see in the clutched hands of Manchester’s finest on a Friday night. No, instead Bab has taken inspiration from the Middle East and given Manchester the elevated kebab experience it never knew it needed.
Bab had been on my hit list since it first opened its doors, and it seemed like the perfect location for an early tea before Emma and I departed Manchester for the weekend.
Pulling up a pew at 5:30, we were two of few patrons keen to get a bite to eat ahead of the Friday rush. Inside, the atmosphere was friendly, laid-back and encouraging of a gin tipple.
The menu is a mixture of meze plates, babs with vegan and veggie options aplenty.
We ordered a modest mix of plates…
Juicy, tender with a sharp coat of smokey flavours.
Halloumi Fries (natch).
Crispy fries topped with tzatziki, feta, olives and chilli sauce.
A serious game-changer, would highly recommend.
Using locally sourced ingredients to proudly produce everything which leaves the kitchen, from the sauces which marinade the handsome cuts of meat, to the fluffy flatbreads which are graced with them – Bab’s attention to detail is apparent with every bite of the vibrant flavours dreamed up by the chefs behind the scenes.
And now for the moment we’ve all been waiting for…
The Lamb Adana bab to be precise.
Chunky, tender pieces of lamb smothered with a rich feta and pistachio labneh, radicchio and pomegranate seeds give the dish a jewelled final flourish.
Pretty on the plate, the physicality of trying to eat it however is nothing less than meaty messiness. Prepare for yoghurt on your chin, lamb juices running down you wrist – but don’t worry yourself, it’s totally worth it.
One to pop on your list the next time you’re in the city, you can book to Bab or do a casual walk-in, prepare to leave more stuffed than a chicken shawarma with a big smile on your face.