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Friday, August 13, 2004

Emma's on Liberty, Enmore

I had never heard of Emma’s on Liberty before, and it is little wonder why, tucked away as it is on a darkened suburban back street of Enmore. However publicity seems to be the last thing it needs with a full house on a Friday night in spite of the alleged strict bookings policy (8.15pm bookings only for the 8.30pm second seating and no extra or missing diners from your original booking number thank you very much).

On arrival however, it quickly becomes apparent why numbers are such a delicate issue with the majority of diners seated on a 20ft communal table that almost runs the length of the room. It’s elbow room only when seated on the wooden benches and mind your back whenever a waiter walks past behind you. With the tiny venue packed to the rafters and no insulation, the clanging of cutlery, clinking of wine glasses, non-stop chatter of conversation and sporadic roars of laughter bounce unrelentingly throughout the night.

Thankfully though, the food is prompt and generous in its delivery. Our group opted for the $27 meat banquet which offered a seemingly-neverending array of Lebanese specialties. Particular standouts included the falafel which was fresh and crisp, and the Ladies Fingers which were moist and light—and likened to a sausage roll by some members of our party!

We concluded our meal with traditional Lebanese cardamon coffee which wasn’t as strong as I expected, and pannacotta which offered pleasingly clean closure to a gluttonous meal. The orange flower tea had an intoxicating citrus aroma and appeared similarly palate-cleansing.

Emma’s on Liberty offers good food at good prices although the crowd and constant din negates any attempts to have any meaningful conversation. For Lebanese in Newtown though, I'd probably still stick with Rowda Ya Habibi.


Elbow room only, on just another Friday night


Baba Ganouge - eggplant roasted on an open fire with tahini, garlic and spices


Falafel - spicy beans, herbs and spices, deep fried until golden


Tabouli - freshly chopped parsley with tomato, shallots and fresh spices


Fatouche - traditional peasant salad mixed with toasted lebanese bread


Ladies fingers - filo pastries filled with sauteed lamb, pinenuts and yoghurt, oven baked till golden


Potatoes - fried and tossed with garlic and fresh coriander


Chicken skewers - marinated in garlic and coriander and grilled


Shish kebab - lamb, onion and capsicum marinated in spices and grilled


Pannacotta with sesame seed wafer


Orange flower tea



Emma's on Liberty
59 Liberty Street, Enmore
Tel: 02 9550 3458

Related GrabYourFork posts:
Rowda Ya Habibi, March 2007
Rowda Ya Habibi, July 2004

7 comments - Add some comment love

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posted by Helen (AugustusGloop) on 8/13/2004 03:59:00 pm


7 Comments:

  • At 8/16/2004 5:19 pm, Blogger R said…

    Yummy.

    For a split second I considered licking the computer screen.

    Keep up the good work.

     
  • At 12/15/2005 2:44 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    what this place lacks in space, it makes up in atmosphere and food. however, having booked a table of 12 people, and spent over $500, it would be rather wise of them to have an eftpos/credit card facility. this is highly invonvinient, and it would be one of the main reasons for us not going back.

     
  • At 1/14/2006 5:32 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi Anonymous - Maybe Inner Westies always buy their own =) but I agree, no credit card facilities can often lead to embarrassed sprints to the nearest ATM!

     
  • At 3/23/2006 12:03 am, Blogger 3rd daughter said…

    i googled emma's as i'm going there tomorrow night for a friend's birthday dinner. i recognised your blog from having seen you over saffron's so i figured it would be a good & honest review :) i'm not fond of crowded places but the food looks pretty good. thanks!

     
  • At 3/30/2006 10:54 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi 3rd daughter - It tends to be crowded and it can get a little noisy, but the food is quite tasty. Hope you had a great meal there!

     
  • At 9/24/2008 3:28 pm, Anonymous Jeremiah Bock said…

    I'ma need a towel!! these photos are ever so appetite stimulating... I will have to check Emma's out, is always busy when I cruise past, but I agree with the Rowda Ya Habibi comment, i.e. can't beat it... ps have you seen noseyinnewtown.com??... pps I have a special request for more reviews on King St restaurants danke shon, Helen :) - JB

     
  • At 9/30/2008 11:31 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi Jeremiah - Thanks for your comment. Your first! Keep 'em coming! Emma's is notoriously busy and quite noisy inside, but the banquet is fun although my heart still lies with Rowda. Thanks for the blog link - a great resource for locals!

     

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