The pasha By Citybowl: Little Lebanon in Abuja.

The pasha

Hello hello, my people 😁. I’m back with a solid review of a lovely Lebanese place I’ve had on my list for a long long time: The Pasha by citybowl. 

So, the pasha has been around for a long time. The first time I visited the pasha was in 2016, and then it was known as Al-pasha or Al-Basha. I’m not so sure anymore. Now, this Lebanese place has gotten a facelift and a fabulous makeover. The Pasha depicts Lebanese heritage and culture in everything. From the furniture to the food, decor, and architecture, each element delivers an authentic, visually appealing, and flavorful experience. 

The Pasha by Citybowl joins my list of affordable restaurants in the big BUJ. Here’s why: for the first time, I didn’t spend my entire dining budget; I went home with change! 🙊. which is a huge plus for them. But like most people, I went to a Lebanese restaurant and ordered Italian 🤦‍♀️ (don’t judge me). Now let’s talk about the food.

FOOD AT THE PASHA BY CITYBOWL

ARAYES KAFTA -2500

This is a Lebanese sandwich with spiced ground beef stuffed into warm pita bread. I was in the mood for some food exploration, so I decided to order this appetizer, and I liked it very much. This appetizer packed a ton of flavour.  I could taste a lot of middle eastern spices with some notes of garlic in this. The dish was really tasty and crunchy, and the meat was well-seasoned and spiced. It also had a sizeable portion for a starter. However, I think I would have loved some kind of sauce or dip to go with it, something that pairs well, like tahini, garlic or yoghurt sauce, or even sweet chilli sauce (because we’re in Nigeria and sweet chilli is everyone’s go-to).

FETTUCCINE ALFREDO – 5000

As you know, I’m ever so skeptical of anything with cream in it, but I was pleasantly surprised by this particular dish, more so because we didn’t ask for extra spice to be added to it. Firstly, I was impressed by the consistency of the sauce. It wasn’t runny, nor was it too thick. It was just right. The sauce was luscious, creamy, tasty, and well-seasoned. Though it was slightly tangy, it was bursting with warm and comforting flavours. The pasta was well coated in the sauce, and the dish had lots of chicken too.

I really liked this dish, but they broke the one rule in cooking pasta – they broke the pasta! 😮‍💨 And this made it difficult to eat because the pasta could not wrap around the fork easily. Also, the plating was a bit meeehhh. There was cucumber on the plate, and it just looked like a really weird combo, to be honest. The cucumber just wasn’t necessary; it detracted from the entire plate. Either way, it was a good dish, and I would recommend ordering this dish at the Pasha. Just be sure to instruct them not to cut the pasta. 

GARLIC CHEESE BREAD – 2500

So this tasted exactly how it should: garlicky, salty, and tasty. The bread was warm and soft as well. It was really really really good. I liked it. But once again, they got me with the plating. Again with the cucumber 🙄. WHY?? Some fresh herbs and grated cheese would have done the trick. Please leave the cucumbers alone, 🙏.

LASAGNA – 5500

This is one of my favourite Italian dishes, so I was really excited about this, but the first bite dampened my excitement a bit. Let me start with the positives. The dish was quite cheesy, with a nice cheese pull and a sizeable portion, enough for one person, and it was also visually pleasing.

However, the dish had some inconsistencies. The beef sauce was tangy and had a little too much of something. I just could not place what it was. There were parts of the dish that were not as moist as the rest of the dish. The beef sauce was more on one side than the other. And I also felt there was not enough béchamel sauce in it to offset the inconsistencies in the meat sauce. It wasn’t all bad really, but it could have been so much better. 

AMBIENCE AT THE PASHA BY CITYBOWL

I have to say, The Pasha has one of the best Lebanese-themed decor in the city. The atmosphere is casual and extremely relaxing. An outstanding feature here is the colourful stained glass bar and wood-rich aesthetic that creates a stunning visual appeal. The entrance was white with beautiful stonework and a huge door that had an eccentric archway that paid homage to Lebanese aesthetics. There was a colourful glass outdoor lamp that fit nicely with the space. It gave such castle vibes! The entrance to the indoor dining area had the most eclectic decor I have ever seen. It was just something different. You need to experience it for yourself.

The stonework was reddish-brown and white, and the room was decorated with a figurine, an antique gramophone, a mirror, lanterns and some other creative accessories. It really was mind-blowing. The outdoor area was so beautiful, there was this modern cushion seating area which was reminiscent of the Arabic-styled cushion seating that had such an inviting aura. The courtyard had contrasting stone galore and comfortable furniture. The detailing was spot on, I could go on and on about how the ambience at this place ticks all the right boxes of the Lebanese theme, but let me just stop here.

SERVICE

The service was good. Some of the staff were dressed in harem pants, and Lebanese/Arabian-themed outfits and that just added to the whole experience. The staff was friendly, available and attentive.

POSTSCRIPT

The Pasha by Citybowl is a casual dining Lebanese restaurant with a laid-back, comfortable, family-friendly ambience and an affordable menu. The price point per person is about 8 – 15K depending on what you order.

I had a terrific time here, and I believe that everyone would enjoy it. Perhaps visit this place the next time you go on a date or just want to chill, and then let me know how it turned out.

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