132 Lygon Street, Brunswick East (map)
I'd heard and read quite a lot of buzz about Rumi, the trendy restaurant doing a modern spin on traditional Lebanese food, which opened in Brunswick East a while back. Reviews in the Epicure by Dani Valent and Mr Lethlean were both positively glowing, and in the blogging world (ugh, I refuse to use the word 'blogosphere' - there's a reason it was voted one of the most annoying web-related words!), Mellie, Mel and Ange have all praised Rumi dinners. I knew that a dinner booking still requires a fair bit of booking, so when K suggested a few weekends ago that we go there for lunch and sample the alternate daytime menu, I jumped at the chance.
The interior (Arabic scripture on white-washed walls, beautiful water bottles, crisp green aprons on the wait staff) was easy on the eye and made one feel tranquil and happy. We ordered some really delicious apple tea and perused the lunch menu. My knowledge of Lebanese food is shamefully limited, but there was no way I wasn't going to try something as unusual-sounding as hot yoghurt soup with dried mint! It was great - very nourishing with a nice sharp sourness underscoring the minty taste. Try it!
Apart from the hot yoghurt soup, which was a must-have, we decided to share two gozleme (can someone correct me on whether the plural for gozleme is gozleme?), despite being sorely tempted to try a bunch of items on the breakfast half of the brunch menu. The first gozleme (filo pastries filled with goodies and then pan-fried) we tried was filled with minced lamb and slivered almonds, and served with a side-serve of yummy yummy labne. It came out nice and hot and tasted great - not too oily and bursting with flavour.
We also had a vegetarian gozleme, with haloumi and pine nuts. Again, delicious - while in this one the haloumi was quite salty, the fresh tomato in the salad was a nice counterbalance taste-wise. We really enjoyed Rumi - thumbs up to the lunch menu - and look forward to returning soon to try the breakfast and dinner menus...