I think we know each other well enough now that I can let you in on a secret restaurant of mine: Tiba’s in Sydney Road. I almost don’t want to blog about it because I understand the power of the written word, the power of word of mouth and the (very small) amount of power I wield as a food blogger (Muahahahaha)… I just don’t want to be crowded out of here or see a rise in prices. So use your new-found knowledge wisely!
Okay, seriously now. The first time I went to Tiba’s I went with a vegetarian friend of mine who insisted that this was the most filling and awesome vegetarian feast that you could get this side of the city at a fraction of what you would expect to pay. I was astounded to find that this was true, so I brought back a host of friends (well, 5 plus me) and found that this claim also holds for the meateaters and non-eaters and everything in between.
The way to order is to pick from the set platters, which comprise a couple of courses (depending on what you order) and one platter per head is definitely enough. We ordered 5 between 6 people and still had an astonishing amount of food leftover (that was after my boyfriend and his hungry mates ploughed through it). With drinks (non-alcoholic and there is no BYO – I believe this is a Muslim restaurant and is both halal and alcohol-free) the total came to $17 each.
Menu items of interest to keep your taste buds happy: the falafel (amazing), fresh baba ganoush and hummus, the lamb (mixed grill is perfect, the meats are so warm and succulent, full of flavour and ever so slightly smokey – perfect grill), the lamb cutlets and… I could go on. You get the idea – it’s the best cheap lebanese I’ve come across and you don’t even have to pay extra for the service (quite good)… not sure about the curtained off areas – I’m sure there’s some conspiracy going on there.
I have won brownie points from pretty much everyone who is a cheapskate living in Brunswick and anybody who loves some Lebanese. Coming back for takeaway as soon as the desire strikes me again, although after this much food I’m surprised I can even walk again.
Ambience: 5/10 (you’re not coming here for the decor or to take in the atmosphere, it’s all about the food)
Value for money: 10/10 (I’m tempted to put 11, but that isn’t actually fair)
Score (food is weighted double): 80%
Perfect for: an inexpensive meal for a huge hunger which doesn’t want to compromise on quality.