Yalla Yalla, Soho

Yalla Yalla London
A little bit of everything please

The Vibe

Yalla Yalla is extremely small, extremely wooden and a little cramped, but oh how bohemian and cosy for whiling away the winter evenings, drinking beakers of red (that’s right, no wine glasses here) and ordering small plates until fully satiated. Making frequent appearances on Time Out’s Cheap Eats lists, it is virtuous in many ways: cheap, relatively healthy, and ‘adventurous’ insomuch as you’re sampling some ‘exotic’ Lebanese fare.

The Order

A little bit of everything please. The mezze sharing plates should dominate the meal. The hommos shawarma mezze is a hearty take hummus, with thin slices of lamb heaped on top, delicious. Pita bread is complimentary so mop away.  But don’t ignore the mains. Really all you need is the mixed grill (chicken, lamb and kofta) but the citrus sea bass may be the one to balance out the heavy mezze pastries.   It’s easy to walk away having spent under £20 a head including drinks.

The Game

Tonight you are a louche and cultured creature who adores to share food, feel at home in a restaurant, swill on wine and talk about your roving repertoire of laid back foreign restaurants in London (‘you really must try this cute little Ethiopian place in Vauxhall, sooo authentic). Be relaxed and comfortable, show an appreciation for the food and really try to get to know your date; the hard core flirting and posturing can wait for the West London bar that follows.

The Faults

Being inexpensive and popular means that the queues can be long, which may be off-putting if on a date. Make sure he/she ain’t no diva and definitely make sure it’s not raining #buzzkill.

Sex Factor

1. Monitor the garlic content. It’s either a pleasant mid-week meal then home, or a Friday night lining of the stomach before continuing the night in the West End. Perhaps Mark’s Bar at Hix or Milk and Honey for post-dinner drinks.

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