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Mar 9, 2010 01:13 PM


Anyone been to Balade in the East Village? I love Lebanese food, but haven't been able to find many reports (it's relatively new)...

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  1. i went a few weeks ago when it first opened so it's possible the service and food have smoothed out since then, but i really wouldnt recommend this spot. the food was mediocre at best, and considering we were waiting a good 45min before any of it came out, i was hoping for better. i had the falafel pizza, which tasted fine but nothing exceptional, and the mini spinach pies, which were dense, dry, and not very flavorful. the service was also awful- our party of four waited an hour after our reservation to be seated. the waiters seemed really clueless and confused the entire time too. id gladly overlook glitches in service if the food was any good, but unfortunately it wasnt. head over to mogador for yummy middle eastern food if thats what youre craving.

    wonder if anyone else has had better experiences and i should give it another chance?

    3 Replies
    1. re: InSearchOfTacos

      Thanks for the input -- I was hoping to do Balade instead of Mogador, since Mogodor doens't take weekend night reservations... but guess I'll have to rethink that plan!

      1. re: ABT

        mogador does get a bit crowded, but depending on the size of your group, it may not be a terrible wait. id rather not be able to make a reservation at all than have one and be stuck waiting a long time anyways, which is what happened at balade.

        you could also give the east village location of moustache a try- i havent been but its on my list, and the menu looks pretty awesome.

        1. re: InSearchOfTacos

          Actually, I went with a big group of friends a week or two after they opened. The service was a little spotty, and they didn't have my favorite Almaza beer in stock despite it being on the menu, but the food we ordered was delicious. I got a mezze plate with garlic labneh, shankleesh, hummus, and grape leaves, and it was all as fresh and good as the stuff I had in Byblos, Lebanon last summer when I was working abroad. I loved the Shish Taouk sandwich so much I picked up another for takeout when I was in the neighborhood a week later. So good - moist and perfectly seasoned chicken with a super-garlickly sauce and sliced pickle, and they even stuck a couple french fries in there! I'll be back to try it again, or at least get take-out.

    2. i've also been to balade and didn't love it. the food was over-priced and was incredibly bland. our hummus didn't have nearly enough tahini or lemon juice (and we had to ask for olive oil to dress it) and the chicken was incredibly dry. the search for good lebanese continues!

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