Abdelrahman Hallab and Sons is now "Hallab", a new logo, a younger identity and with that a selection of innovative treats which started last year with the ice cream collection. Funky Knefeh or funky Bûches; a mouth-watering season of food has commenced this month.
It's been a while since I last visited Hallab, the address of the best "Znoud el Set" and "Halawat el Jeben". Today, coming all the way from Beirut, I ordered one plate of each of their new Knefeh. Croquant, Cheese, Kashta, Apples and Chocolate. A basket of mini kaak landed on the table...
- Cheese: covered in toasted bread crumbs offering a light crunch over a bed of melted cheese. Non-salty cheese, an enjoyable sweetness, a memorable finish. It's that cheese Knefeh with a style of modernism and class, beautifully crafted to be enjoyed without being messy. I prefer it as is, without a kaaka.
- Kashta: add a bit of sugar syrup and enjoy. A biscuity cover, a warm and moist Kashta bed and a decorative Kashta cone on top. It's good, really good, heart-warming and mouth-watering. The textures and flavors combined, that smoothness and balanced taste.
- Croquant: OMG! What joy is this! The same biscuity crown, a warm bed of Kashta and a mix of crunchy nuts marvelously cooked with caramel. A crunch, a stickiness, an enjoyable sweetness while your brain asks you to grab another bite. Two thumbs up for such a creation! Knefeh has been redefined, revisited to amaze... bravo!
- Chocolate: Kashta and a layer of chocolate. Not the finest of chocolates, a bit too sweet for me, a good Kashta or probably the best in town known by Hallab... but I'd personally harden the chocolate a little, reduce its sweetness and use a darker one. It's too childish in my opinion.
- Apple: nope! That's not what I expected. What you get is an apple tart made of apple cubes, cinnamon and sugar topped with toasted bread crumbs. What I expected is at least some Kashta, cheese or simply a cheese Knefeh infused with apples. It's not worth the hype it has been given. I'm happy and proud that Hallab used Lebanese apples and supported the apple cause, but as for the taste, something better could have been achieved.
Knefeh is now trendy, a proud national delicacy and Hallab has taken it to another level. The new Knefeh flavors are recommended and will guarantee to put a smile on your face. I hope they taste the same in all their franchises around Lebanon.