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Deerah… That’s a wrap – Belfast’s delightful Lebanese cafe ensures it’s a new favourite

Delightful Lebanese cafe’s sugar and spice mix ensures it’s a new favourite

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Deerah in Belfast city centre

Deerah in Belfast city centre

Deerah hummus

Deerah hummus

Deerah baklawa

Deerah baklawa

Deerah shawarma chicken wrap

Deerah shawarma chicken wrap

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Deerah in Belfast city centre

Deerah

107 Royal Ave, Belfast.

Tel: 028 9031 1101

You know you’ve made it when a lunch you savoured following a cultural trip to Belfast ends up on Facebook — and you didn’t post it.

After a sunny Sunday morning exploring Clifton House and Clifton Street Cemetery, appetites needed to be sated. Having walked past Deerah on several occasions, it was time to sample what the Lebanese café had on offer.

First impressions were great: a packed menu of hot and cold mezza, wraps, charcoal grilled meals and, for those not wanting to step too far out of their comfort zone, burgers and pizza.

The cafe was pleasantly cool after a morning of walking and the team was friendly, giving us plenty of time to survey the menu before choosing. 

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We opted for a falafel wrap (when in a Lebanese café…) and it was duly packed with hot, crispy chickpea bites. My friend commented on the sauce which added to the flavour.

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Deerah shawarma chicken wrap

Deerah shawarma chicken wrap

Deerah shawarma chicken wrap

My shawarma chicken wrap tasted of a mixture of spices and again, was heavy with protein. The wraps come with little adornments but when they taste as good as this, why would you?

We ordered chips because we were unsure of portion size, and while always welcomed, the wraps would have been sustaining enough on their own.

A portion of hummus was also ordered, and it came with thin slices of bread and a slick of oil in the middle.

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Deerah hummus

Deerah hummus

Deerah hummus

The former was the star for me: supermarket store hummus can taste overly sweet and often gritty but this offered a more savoury punch, smooth and a great accompaniment to the meal. And also, hummus and chips is a perfect comfort food combination.

While pleasantly fed, we weren’t quite ready to leave. I twisted my friend’s arm to share the five piece baklawa (a three-piece portion is also available) and we ordered a fresh mint tea each. 

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Deerah baklawa

Deerah baklawa

Deerah baklawa

The mini pastries were swiftly introduced and offered an extreme sugar hit after such a savoury main. Layered with pistachios, the portion size was enough to satisfy without feeling too much. 

The mint tea was how you’d want it: hot and full of fresh leaves, reviving and refreshing in equal measure. 

At this stage, the cafe, which had a few visitors when we arrived, had filled up nicely. We often don’t think too far past CastleCourt for dining options but Deerah has fast become a favourite for a casual meal that’s full of flavour. 

That evening, I got a message from my fellow diner: ‘Is that our lunch on Facebook?’

Sure enough, the cafe had posted one of the team with our wraps and the comments below suggested we weren’t the only ones appreciative of what Deerah offers.

I’d like to return to the cafe for dinner and see how the main courses fare — but for lunch and a chance to take a few moments rest, this is very much a place to recommend.

The Food: 

Falafel wrap £6

Shawarma chicken wrap £7.50

Hummus £6

Chips £3.50

Soft drinks £3.60

Five piece baklawa £5.50

Mint teas £5

TOTAL £37.10

The Rating

Service ****

Food ****

Decor ***

Vegetarian ****

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