With so many reports of tainted, rotten food hitting the market, Lebanese consumers are desperate to source organic, pesticide-free food from responsible suppliers. And their options to do so are growing alongside their burgeoning demand.
Our friends from Green Traveler Guides sent over a fabulous overview of the top cafes, markets and restaurants leading Lebanon’s slow food revolution and we have rounded up six of them. Hit the jump for a guide to Beirut’s hottest sustainable food establishments.
1. Souk el Tayeb and Tawlet
Founded by Kamal Mouzawak, Souk el Tayeb is the oldest and largest organic food market in Beirut. A wonderful place for customers, farmers and restaurateurs to meet, greet and share some of the healthiest food goods available in the country, the market is open every Saturday from 9am to 2p.m. And then there is Tawlet, which is hosting the recycling training sessions we wrote about last week, which is also owned by Mouzawak. In addition to local wines and 961 beer, this hip new food joint features artisanal dishes by Josphin Ghaleb from Tripoli.
2. Walid Ataya and Slow Food Lebanon
Walid Ataya has several slow food establishments under his care, including Bread Republic and Cow & Apple Bistro, in addition to a couple of wine stores. And every Tuesday morning, the founder of Slow Food Lebanon hosts Souk el Ared, a small 1%% certified organic farmers market, on the patio of his Nehme Yafet Street Bread Republic.
3. L’Boulangere by Seline Hashem
If delectable pastries made with organic ingredients floats your taste buds, then you might want to stop by this artisan bakery in the Achrafieh neighborhood. Run by Seline Hashem, the bakery is located on St. Nicolas Selim Bustros Street and offers croissants, bread, proper French baguettes and more.
4. A New Earth
Sabine Kassouf and Layane Makarem founded A New Earth – reportedly the most successful natural foods store in Beirut. It is also the largest and a variety of eco-products are available as well. With more than 16,000 “likes” on their Facebook page, this wonderful store demonstrates how eager the citizens of Beirut are about eco-options.
5. Al Marej
Founded by Haifa el Chaaer and her husband, Al Marej is the only grocery store in the city that sells 100% certified organic, locally-grown products, including meat. Also in Achrafieh, this store is located on Abdel Wahab El-Inglizi.
6. Healthy Basket
Last but not least, the Healthy Basket established by Ranya Tiuma is the only CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program that offers some organic produce at the same prices that consumers pay in conventional stores. They also sell cage-free eggs and organic milk.
For a more exhaustive discussion at what is driving Lebanon’s slow food revolution, stop by Green Traveler Guides, from whence this post was adapted.