As has become routine whenever we visit somewhere new, on our way up to Middlesbrough one weekend I checked out which restaurants in the area were recommended on TripAdvisor. Meze Lounge came top of the list and after quickly looking through the menu on their website decided to go. While trying to find it, we wandered past Nosh (read about that here!) and eventually stumbled upon Meze Lounge on Linthorpe Road, in between a Polish supermarket (coming from a Polish background, a town with at least one eastern european supermarket is always good in our books!) and a Chinese restaurant. From the outside, it looked a bit like a standard takeaway but, convinced by the online menu, we decided to go in.
They had a very reasonably priced lunch menu – £5.95 for 1 course, £7.95 for 2 – and so settled down at a table to decide what to eat. I decided to order a lamb moussaka (having had the vegetarian moussaka at 4023 in Birmingham so many times, I had to see how Meze Lounge’s would compare) whilst he ordered a chicken guvec. When the waitress came to take our order, I must admit that the falafel starter to share was a bit of a panic-order, but I’m so glad I did.
The falafels came first, alongside a bowl of freshly cooked bread. The falafels were divine – we’ve raved about our love of falafels so many times on here so had fairly high hopes for these. They were still hot and I was very glad to see still whole chickpeas in the mixture. They were reasonably sized and the serving size of four falafels was perfect for sharing. The bread was coated with toasted sesame seeds, which was lovely, and was delightful topped with the hummus. It was a struggle trying to save some bread to have with our mains!
Not long after we finished the falafels, our mains came along. Both portions were generous, leaving us pleasantly full by the end. Guvec is a traditional meat and vegetable stew, almost resembling a ratatouille which is normally cooked in an earthenware pot. The chicken guvec was served alongside a portion of rice and a side salad. The sauce was delicious and beautifully seasoned – this is definitely a dish that we’d order again. We were both very happy that we saved some of the fresh bread, as it was prefect for mopping up the sauce. My lamb moussaka just as beautiful, filled with layers of potato, aubergines, courgettes and lamb mince in a tomato sauce and topped with a generous serving of cheese. My portion came alongside a side salad and a serving of garlic bread. I was very happy with my choice and would happily try the vegetarian version next time!
Overall, the lunch menu is definitely something we’d order from again. The atmosphere was very welcome and the decor of Meze Lounge only enhanced this. We can’t wait to go back!