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Tahinov Hats: Armenian Wonders from Ichkhanian Bakery
I first discovered Ichkhanian bakery on a Monday morning, but they were closed. I had to come back again and am so glad I did. Ichkhanian, set in the heart of Beirut since 1964, is known for their lahme beajine, Mante and Shish barak. They only do meat loafs… no zaatar and no cheese.
A gentle lady sits behind the cash register. She’s the daughter of the man who turned this small hole in the wall into a national reference for lahme beajine.
Work starts at 8am and continues until 3pm and deliveries and walk-ins never stop coming.
What makes you special, I ask, "We take care of our quality and, most importantly, our meat. We buy our own cuts, blend them, marinate them and layer them on this special dough, which doesn't contain sugar at all. Come here to enjoy a fine lahme beajine with an Armenian touch."
Ingredients: Garlic, tomato, parsley, green pepper, and spices and a sugar-free dough.
Since it contains garlic, I ordered the pomegranate one: Bite into this super thin parcel with crunchy borders before feeling the dough melt under your teeth like butter... The meat takes over afterwards, erupting with flavor while a lemony touch caresses your taste buds in style. A premium meat mix prepared in house and blended with a little onion and pomegranate molasses. The portion is small, so expect to eat four or more, I warn you, they’re addictive. I loved them!
Ichkhanian takes special orders. You can have your lahme beajine without onions or garlic if ordered in advance.
If you prefer to try a modern, more sophisticated set up for Ichkhanian, then try out their Jal el Dib branch that is handled by the son. It is more of a restaurant where mante and Shish barak can be enjoyed.
I'll be passing again soon.