December 18, 2014 Dbayeh Mount Lebanon Lebanon Middle East

Bar Tartine: A Heaven for Garlic and Onions Lovers
Non-smokers friendly

Phone Number: +961 71 918999

Address: Dbayeh internal road, Mont-Liban, Lebanon


Price Range: 35-55 $


Welcoming: 3/5

Food Temperature: 8/10

Ambiance / Music: 7.5/10

Menu Choice: 2/5

Food Taste: 27/30

Architecture / Interior: 7/10

Food presentation: 7/10

Service: 6/10

Value for money: 8/10

Here I am back at Bar Tartine, which recently opened in Dbayeh, for dinner. Last time I passed by it was for a casual, quick lunch, this time I was looking for the full dining experience.


A nice setup, warm lights, an interesting ambiance, the atmosphere was, as usual, let down by Bar Tartine’s service. A service, where waiters don’t smile and plates travel along in limbo before reaching your table, it's all unsynchronized and lack professionalism, but I try not to focus on this problem because I like their food, or at least the dishes I can eat. 

I’ve been to Bar Tartine for breakfast and I do believe they have something extraordinary. As I mentioned, I'd been to lunch and tried to order something without garlic or onions and the experience was memorable, but tonight for dinner, after carefully reading the menu, I noticed that 90% or more of the menu contains garlic and onions or is marinated in garlic juice. If you’re allergic or intolerant, beware. After searching extensively, I tried a few dishes. 

Dinner was good:

  • Ricotta Croquettes LBP15,500: Breaded ricotta and Parmesan seasoned with thyme and served with marinara sauce. Five thick fingers of battered cheese ricotta, crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside, unique for not being filled with mozzarella cheese, and really, really tasty.


  • Camembert Kumquat LBP14,000: Fresh, crusty sourdough bread with homemade kumquat jam on melted camembert, topped with grilled almond. A thinly sliced baguette, toasted to perfection, and topped with melting camembert cheese while a layer of buttery kumquat adds sweetness and finesse. Added to that, there's also a load of grilled almonds for a fine crunch. I love this plate.


  • Seared Tuna Wasabi LBP24,500: Seared, fresh tuna steak, cucumber, boiled eggs, potato and avocado, seasoned with wasabi sauce and sesame sprinkles in sliced French bread. I remember it being more flavorful, nevertheless this sandwich is still a favorite. The ingredients top a crunchy pain de campagne where an egg adds a touch, a potato adds more, a crunchy cucumber makes it unique, an avocado adds smoothness, and the mayo adds the flavor. The tuna is indeed tasty and a one-off, but the overall flavor of the sandwich needs a hint, a push. A salty touch, or maybe the power of mustard. Loved the pepper that caresses your palate at every bite. 


  • Perfect Pollo LBP22,000: Grilled chicken in a creamy cheese base with Parmesan and mozzarella, succulent artichoke hearts and fragrant basil (I removed the onions). "Perfect", as they say, without the onions. Juicy fillings, a great crust and a crunchy border, the best that Bar Tartine offers, with a burning, enjoyable aftertaste. The only problem is that it's filled with garlic, so I had to skip the second bite.


  • Lean&Mean Burger LBP29,500: A juicy, homemade, ground beef patty, traditionally grilled and served with caramelized onions, creamy camembert in a homemade Tartine bun, a side salad and golden, crunchy fries. Definitely still one of the country's favorite burgers. A good patty stuffed inside a unique bun, topped with cereals, airy and light with the added value, the uniqueness of melted camembert cheese, which makes this burger a piece of art. I loved its textures, I loved the flavors... All so enjoyable!


  • Majestic Margherita LBP18,500: A classic, with tomato, basil, mozzarella and parmesan in a crispy artisanal bread crust. Good, even great, if eaten fresh, it will soak through in minutes. I'm in love with Bar Tartine's crust and crispy borders and that's surely not a secret anymore.


The coleslaw salad! What the heck! An overdose of green crunchy onions! I'm sure they misread the original recipe!

Now for the dessert... We ordered four cakes, the strawberry tart, the chocolate eclair, the almond mille feuille and the chocolate/caramel tart, which I found fresh and tasty. They're not fine dining pieces and cannot compare with the high end pastry shops of the country, but they are good for a cafe/restaurant like Bar Tartine. I loved the crunch of the tart dough, the richness of the ingredients, the equilibrium of sugar and the crispness of the almond tart... But I missed a certain finesse and body. 


The pluses:

  • I love the fries
  • I believe the burger is unique
  • The pizzas are different and one of a kind

The minuses:

  • There are no desserts on the menu other than the cakes on display. I don't find that logical in a restaurant!
  • Garlic and onions everywhere! Please! Is that a challenge or an innovation?
  • Service has to be fine-tuned

It wasn't easy to digest all the hidden garlic and onions... Anyway, I still love their food.





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