A much-loved mainstay on Edgware Road, the Maroush empire comes in many guises. The larger restaurants, Maroush I & Maroush Gardens, are good for lingering, with belly dancing or live music frequently on offer. For a more low-key version – & smaller price tag, too – make a beeline for the café-like surrounds of Maroush IV, Ranoush, or Beirut Express. All serve a similar line of Lebanese mezze bursting with fragrance & flavour, from cold plates of tabbouleh & kibbeh (raw minced lamb, cracked wheat, onion & parsley) to warm falafel or sautéed chicken livers. They also offer excellent fatoush (a lemony salad dressed with mint, parsley & pieces of toasted flatbread), & marinated chicken or lamb from the grill is always a safe bet. The quality of cooking can always be relied on, but standards of service vary according to the location.
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