Review: Middle Eastern restaurant Tabülé’s chic new Riverdale outpost

Review: Middle Eastern restaurant Tabülé’s chic new Riverdale outpost

(Image: Tabülé/Facebook)
Review: Tabülé (Image: Tabülé/Facebook)

Tabülé ★★
810 Queen St. E., 416-465-2500

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The second location of the midtown restaurant Tabülé occupies a former east end doctor’s office, beautifully made over with vintage stained glass light fixtures, a wood inlay counter and marble-accented washrooms. The kitchen is out to impress, with a focus on efficiency, precision and presentation. Dainty cauliflower florets are flash-fried and drizzled with tahini, producing a vegetarian appetizer that’s as fun to eat as popcorn shrimp. Labneh, a Middle Eastern cream cheese, makes a rich, tangy dip for fluffy pitas, though it could use more zaatar sprinkled on top. Seared slabs of halloumi add tangy heft to a salad of peppery baby arugula and tart pomegranate vinaigrette. Lamb-beef meatballs in a garlicky tomato sauce have just the right smidge of gaminess. A dessert called mühalabiya turns out to be a creamy custard flavoured with rosewater and sprinkled a bit too lightly with slivered pistachios.

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