Sa­hara Mezz Bar

HK Magazine - - DINING -

Mid­dle Eastern. G/F, 11 El­gin St., Cen­tral, 2291-6060.

Good ol’ Sa­hara has been of­fer­ing rea­son­ably priced food, de­cent drinks and a bit of old-fash­ioned fun since it opened in 2005. Hav­ing be­come a SoHo main­stay for cheap happy hour and shisha, we de­cided to head back to see what’s changed.

HIT We de­cided the mezze plat­ter was too ob­vi­ous (al­though the one our neigh­bors were feast­ing on looked pretty awe­some) and in­stead went for the pastille ($65), es­sen­tially a pi­geon pas­try filled with egg and spices, which was both unusual and de­li­cious. We also en­joyed the roasted fresh fig salad ($90), which came dot­ted with plenty of soft goat cheese. The lamb tagine ($165) was tasty and a gen­er­ous por­tion, though it didn’t blow our minds. We washed this down with a cou­ple of bot­tles of ex­cel­lent Le­banese 961 beer and a mint tea.

MISS The veg­e­tar­ian cous cous ($90), while pleas­ant enough, was re­ally noth­ing more than chunky veg­etable broth in which we strug­gled to dis­cern much in the way of a Moroc­can in­flu­ence. With plenty of shisha be­ing smoked, loud mu­sic and slightly cramped seat­ing, this might be a less com­fort­able meal if you’re look­ing to re­lax in­stead of rush­ing off for a big night out af­ter your meal.

BOT­TOM LINE Good rather than great food, a buzzy at­mos­phere and gen­er­ous hos­pi­tal­ity mean that Sa­hara is still the fun night out it’s al­ways been.

Open daily 6-11.30pm. $$

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