South Granville is now home to a well-loved Lebanese restaurant that first made an impression to Vancouver food-lovers on Commercial Drive.
Jamjar has just opened its doors to its second location (1488 West 11th Avenue), and serves up the same tasty folk Lebanese food that you’ll find at its sister spot—with the addition of some new choices.
“The menu here is bigger, because it’s a bigger kitchen so we can do more,” Fadi Eid, owner of Jamjar, told the Straight in an interview at his new eatery. “All the favourites are the same.”
Its food creations range from shared platters to salads, and cold mezze (tapas or appetizers) to hot mezze. Ingredients include Mediterranean staples such as hummus, chickpea, potatoes, lamb sausages, eggplants, and much more.
The eatery uses Ocean Wise seafood (certified by the Vancouver Aquarium to be ocean-friendly), and sources its meats from a local butcher and Two Rivers Meats.
“We have something on the dinner menu called moghrabieh, it’s like a larger sized couscous and we serve it with lamb shank,” explained Eid. “We also have something called batenjan, which is deep-fried eggplant that comes with mint tomato salsa.”
It also sells its popular hummus at the restaurant, and those who bring their jar back for a refill gets a special discount.
Besides savoury dishes, Jamjar also offers a selection of house-made desserts. Those with a sweet-tooth will enjoy trying its vegan-coconut milk chocolate rice pudding, or gluten-free date squares served with in-house ice cream.
But it’s not just the food that brings a bit of the Drive to the South Granville neighbourhood—it’s also the overall laidback atmosphere in the restaurant.
The 1,000-square-foot space that seats 50 people was previously occupied by Rangoli (which has moved next door), but the interior has been overhauled with a new look and feel.
With an open-concept kitchen, plenty of tables and counters made from reclaimed-wood, and rustic window frames, guests will be able to enjoy their meal in a relaxed and comfortable environment.
This dining establishment may have just soft-opened last week, but Eid tells us that he’s already busy planning and prepping for the opening of Jamjar’s third location at the University of British Columbia in July.
There will soon be three different Jamjar spots, but the owner insists that the restaurant’s mantra will remain the same.
“We’re all about decent food at an affordable price point, and no fuss,” said Eid. “A lot of people like to put a lot of frou-frou in their food, but we don’t like that.”
Scroll through the photos below for a first look at Jamjar’s newest location.