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Libanais Bakery - multiple locations

Libanais Bakery - multiple locations
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  • Libanais Bakery - multiple locations

    Post #1 - April 20th, 2013, 8:18 am
    Post #1 - April 20th, 2013, 8:18 am Post #1 - April 20th, 2013, 8:18 am
    Libanais was noted in an earlier openings and closings thread, but I don't believe it has its own. And it should if for no other reason than to discuss za'atar croissants, which I had never heard of and which they make:

    Image

    I stopped by for the first time Friday to pick up treats for my colleagues and got a variety of warm-from-the-oven croissants, the most interesting of which was the za'atar. The croissants were decent but nowhere near my favorite croissants at Floriole. I enjoyed the za'atar croissant but all of the za'atar was in the middle, as you can see from the photo. I think I might have liked it spread out before rolling up. But za'atar + croissant is a delicious thing and I could have definitely eaten several of these.

    There is a great variety of sweets and what they call breakfast pies, which I will try on my next visit. The owner was very warm and enthusiastic and if I didn't have to get to work, I would have loved to have chatted more.

    You'll find Libanais in the same strip mall as New York Bagel and Bialy.

    Libanais Sweets
    4708 W. Touhy Ave.
    Lincolnwood, IL 60712
    847-329-5060
    Monday – Saturday: 7:00 – 7:00
    Sunday: 7:00 – 3:00
  • Post #2 - April 20th, 2013, 11:22 am
    Post #2 - April 20th, 2013, 11:22 am Post #2 - April 20th, 2013, 11:22 am
    Hellodali wrote: But za'atar + croissant is a delicious thing and I could have definitely eaten several of these.

    I was just by this bakery this morning, bummer I didn't read your post first.

    For those like me that didn't know that za'atar was: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zaatar
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #3 - April 20th, 2013, 11:26 am
    Post #3 - April 20th, 2013, 11:26 am Post #3 - April 20th, 2013, 11:26 am
    David Lebovitz is doing a series of posts on eating in Lebanon and just mentioned zaatar croissants. So happy to hear that we can find them locally.
  • Post #4 - April 22nd, 2013, 12:06 pm
    Post #4 - April 22nd, 2013, 12:06 pm Post #4 - April 22nd, 2013, 12:06 pm
    Not much of a sweet eater myself, I reserve personal judgement, but my GF swoons over this place.
    -ramon
  • Post #5 - April 22nd, 2013, 1:00 pm
    Post #5 - April 22nd, 2013, 1:00 pm Post #5 - April 22nd, 2013, 1:00 pm
    Love this place, the chocolate croissants are excellent.
  • Post #6 - April 23rd, 2013, 12:49 pm
    Post #6 - April 23rd, 2013, 12:49 pm Post #6 - April 23rd, 2013, 12:49 pm
    No zaatar croissants this morning, they ran out early due to a large walk-in order, but Nasr, the friendly owner, made up a few zaatar breads. Slightly thyme heavy, little light on the sumac, but enjoyable none the less. Nasr mentioned he rented the space to the West and was planning on expanding and putting in a "dome oven"

    I tasted one of the small pastries while I waited, crisp with subtle honey flavor. Looking forward to exploring more of the sweets and trying a zaatar croissant.

    Image
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #7 - March 18th, 2017, 7:40 am
    Post #7 - March 18th, 2017, 7:40 am Post #7 - March 18th, 2017, 7:40 am
    Libanais Sweets and Restaurant has opened its second location. 3300 W. Devon Ave., Lincolnwood

    http://chicago.eater.com/2017/1/6/14195 ... pring-2017
    Hors D'oeuvre: A ham sandwich cut into forty pieces.
    - Jack Benny
  • Post #8 - March 18th, 2017, 8:23 am
    Post #8 - March 18th, 2017, 8:23 am Post #8 - March 18th, 2017, 8:23 am
    Bravo! I used to use Libonais and NY Bagel & Bialy as a great one-two punch. Owner was extremely friendly and made a killer espresso.
  • Post #9 - March 20th, 2017, 6:53 pm
    Post #9 - March 20th, 2017, 6:53 pm Post #9 - March 20th, 2017, 6:53 pm
    Stopped for BAGELS Sunday morning and Libanais Bakery's closed....
    hand-written sign on the door saying the same.
  • Post #10 - March 22nd, 2017, 9:19 am
    Post #10 - March 22nd, 2017, 9:19 am Post #10 - March 22nd, 2017, 9:19 am
    Hombre de Acero wrote:Stopped for BAGELS Sunday morning and Libanais Bakery's closed....
    hand-written sign on the door saying the same.


    That's because they are now on Devon and McCormick

    https://www.facebook.com/LibanaisSweets/

    [mod's may want to change thread title]
    Think Yiddish, Dress British - Advice of Evil Ronnie to me.
  • Post #11 - March 22nd, 2017, 12:59 pm
    Post #11 - March 22nd, 2017, 12:59 pm Post #11 - March 22nd, 2017, 12:59 pm
    Vital Information wrote:
    Hombre de Acero wrote:Stopped for BAGELS Sunday morning and Libanais Bakery's closed....
    hand-written sign on the door saying the same.


    That's because they are now on Devon and McCormick

    https://www.facebook.com/LibanaisSweets/

    [mod's may want to change thread title]

    Done.

    New address is 3300 W. Devon Ave, Lincolnwood, IL 60712

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #12 - March 24th, 2017, 7:35 am
    Post #12 - March 24th, 2017, 7:35 am Post #12 - March 24th, 2017, 7:35 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    Vital Information wrote:
    Hombre de Acero wrote:Stopped for BAGELS Sunday morning and Libanais Bakery's closed....
    hand-written sign on the door saying the same.


    That's because they are now on Devon and McCormick

    https://www.facebook.com/LibanaisSweets/

    [mod's may want to change thread title]

    Done.

    New address is 3300 W. Devon Ave, Lincolnwood, IL 60712

    =R=


    First off, the Touhy location isn't permanently closed. They are temporarily closed for remodeling. It should reopen "in a month or two" according to the staff at the Devon location. jnm123 will still be able to get his espresso and bagels fix.

    mods - might want to split off Libanais into two posts, or not.

    I had a lite dinner last night at the new location on Devon. The spot formerly know as Jaffa Bakery was remodeled into a nice airy space. As you walk in, you immediately see a huge display of wonderful sweets. Very tempting indeed.

    It's an open kitchen design similar to Jaffa. There's no overhead menus to glance. You need to grab a menu next to the cash register to figure out what to order. The menu consists of all day breakfast , mezza, wraps and sandwiches, soups and salads, and mana'eesh (including Gwiv's favorite zaatar). Main course options include lamb chops, kabobs, red snapper, and vegetable stew. You order at the cashier and they give you a number to hang on your table. The food is brought to your table.

    I had a shawarma mix wrap that consisted of beef, lamb and chicken. It was served on a small wooden plank. While it looks nice for presentation, the plank wasn't practical for catching spilled meat from my sandwich and the spilled food landed on the table. Since there wasn't any utensils on the table, I used my fingers to pick up the spillage.

    The sandwich itself was quite good. Not huge by any means. But it did the trick. I will definitely return to work my way through the menu. The trick is to pass by the freaking huge dessert display without drooling.

    The parking lot is on the smallish side.

    New website - http://www.libanaischicago.com/
    Hors D'oeuvre: A ham sandwich cut into forty pieces.
    - Jack Benny
  • Post #13 - March 24th, 2017, 7:43 am
    Post #13 - March 24th, 2017, 7:43 am Post #13 - March 24th, 2017, 7:43 am
    How kind of you to post the realities and website URL of Libanais and the TWO locations. What a sense of style the owners have.
    I just looked at the menu, and it looks amazing.
    With once-upon-a-time Pita Inn prices to boot!
    I can not wait to make my way thru the more unusual (to me) dishes listed.
    Wishing the owners the very best.
  • Post #14 - March 25th, 2017, 7:47 am
    Post #14 - March 25th, 2017, 7:47 am Post #14 - March 25th, 2017, 7:47 am
    Dave148 wrote: (including Gwiv's favorite zaatar). Main course options include lamb chops, kabobs, red snapper, and vegetable stew. You order at the cashier and they give you a number to hang on your table. The food is brought to your table.

    Dave,

    Was at Libanais Thursday for lunch with a buddy, tried Mana'eesh Zaatar along with M'hammara. I liked both, preferred zaatar my dining companion gave the edge to M'hammara, though think Taza Bakery, a few blocks east, do a better job on them in general.

    We split Hummus Beirut (spicy hummus), salad and chicken shawarma plate. Shawarma well cooked but slightly mild for my taste, my friend found it top-notch. All in all a good meal if not particularly motivating.

    Space is large, comfortable with a few seating areas, outdoor seating coming this summer, and lots and lots (and lots) of good looking pastry. Oddly at lunch we had table service, when you only had counter at dinner, though slightly disorganized as if it was something they were testing out. Our server was friendly and knowledgeable, I'm sure it will improve, they are only open a short while.

    Word from the server is they will keep Touhy and its being remodeled.

    Libanais3.jpg Mana'eesh: Zaatar & M'hammara

    Libanais4.jpg Chicken shawarma plate

    Libanais2.jpg Small hummus Beirut
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #15 - March 25th, 2017, 9:19 am
    Post #15 - March 25th, 2017, 9:19 am Post #15 - March 25th, 2017, 9:19 am
    We've been driving by the new location, eagerly awaiting opening. I didn't realize it was also going to be a restaurant and cafe! Now that I see the menu, my husband will be really psyched - he lived in Lebanon for 7 years, and has always mourned the lack of a place in Chicago where he can get all the Lebanese street foot and snacks that he pines for. He will be especially psyched about the mana'eesh. I'm tempted to wake him up so we can go there for breakfast!
  • Post #16 - March 27th, 2019, 6:26 pm
    Post #16 - March 27th, 2019, 6:26 pm Post #16 - March 27th, 2019, 6:26 pm
    Couple of years later Libanais Touhy has not reopened and Libanais Devon is busy with a bakery, in-house dining, parking and lots of seating. Since my initial posts, has it really been two years, I've been 5-6 times and stand by my assessment "All in all a good meal if not particularly motivating. "

    Lest I go 200-words on how just above mediocre I find the food, I typically get hummus w/chicken shawarma and salad or soup, let me offer the reason for this post, Kibbeh Nayyeh, a hard to find item in Chicagoland. I've not ordered it, noticed it on the menu just recently, would call to make sure they had it before driving any distance, but when done well, as opposed to well done :), its a real treat.
    Lib1.jpg Libanais Bakery menu, Kibbeh Nayyeh


    While they have improved service since my last post Libanais staff, both FOH/BOH, seem obsessed with their cell phones, quote incorrect specials, forget items and generally don't seem to give a flying fuck. I go every few months as its close to my house, I enjoy hummus w/chicken shawarma, they have long hours and their own parking.

    I should note the hardest working person in the room is the female busser, she is friendly, always in motion, attentive to aspects above her pay grade and I've never seem her so much as glance at a cell phone.

    Libanais Restaurant
    3300 W Devon Ave
    Lincolnwood, IL 60712
    8am to 11pm
    7-days
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #17 - March 27th, 2019, 6:39 pm
    Post #17 - March 27th, 2019, 6:39 pm Post #17 - March 27th, 2019, 6:39 pm
    Huh. YMMV, apparently. We have become regulars and typically get a veggie appetizer combo and the whitefish. Try the whitefish! We also did a huge catering order for 80 people for my father-in-law's memorial service, which went off without a hitch, and everyone complimented the food, including the large proportion of attendees who had spent their careers in the Middle East.
  • Post #18 - March 27th, 2019, 8:20 pm
    Post #18 - March 27th, 2019, 8:20 pm Post #18 - March 27th, 2019, 8:20 pm
    Lots of items that are not very common in Chicago. Both the fatteh and the sujok sandwich are quite good.
  • Post #19 - March 27th, 2019, 8:42 pm
    Post #19 - March 27th, 2019, 8:42 pm Post #19 - March 27th, 2019, 8:42 pm
    Eva Luna wrote:Huh. YMMV, apparently. We have become regulars and typically get a veggie appetizer combo and the whitefish. Try the whitefish!
    I'll expand my ordering, will try the whitefish, thanks for the recommendation.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #20 - March 28th, 2019, 5:28 am
    Post #20 - March 28th, 2019, 5:28 am Post #20 - March 28th, 2019, 5:28 am
    Perfect location for many who would like to pick up something on their way downtown for work - yet like others opens too late for this to be possible for anyone who needs to be at their desk 8:30-9:00.
    "I live on good soup, not on fine words." -Moliere
  • Post #21 - March 28th, 2019, 10:38 am
    Post #21 - March 28th, 2019, 10:38 am Post #21 - March 28th, 2019, 10:38 am
    It is my humble opinion that this place is putting out some of the best Lebanese/Levantine food in Chicago on the North Side. If someone knows another contender, I'd love to hear about it. Their bakery/sweets are also spectacular. This place is a much needed corrective for the lack of quality Lebanese in Chicago proper, compared to D.C., L.A. or NYC.
    "By the fig, the olive..." Surat Al-Teen, Mecca 95:1"
  • Post #22 - March 31st, 2019, 10:15 pm
    Post #22 - March 31st, 2019, 10:15 pm Post #22 - March 31st, 2019, 10:15 pm
    We ate there on Saturday afternoon around 3, and walked into a 30-40 minute wait thanks to a review on Check Please! (ugh) that we weren't aware had posted the day before on the WTTW website. The good news is that the m'hammara I ordered was excellent, served the way hummus is served in the Middle East with a pool of olive oil in the middle of a smooth, thick textured red pepper dip. My own jouji kabob, similar to the chicken koubideh I've had at Kabobi or Noon-a-Kabob, was nicely charred and had a subtle spice overtone to it that you rarely see in most Middle East restaurants in Andersonville or even Albany Park coming off the grill.

    However, they were clearly unprepared for the size of the crowd that they had from the review. My wife's chicken kabob came out 35 minutes after my food and the chicken was partially raw, plus we were told they had run out of rice right after she received her food. Can't say I've ever seen that at a Middle Eastern restaurant.

    The waitress as well as the manager we met were friendly, the latter concerned that they'd alienate what he calls their foodie crowd (I guess us) that likes well-prepared and paced service, as well as to linger to enjoy food and dessert. Hope they can evolve, but hopefully all things Check Please will pass....as this version of Lebanese was as good as the gold standard for Arabic-style Middle Eastern we'd eaten in our trips to Israel, namely a chef restaurant called Baladna in Jish (Gush Halav).

    At any rate we'll come back, but it might be for breakfast to check out the Falleh or Balila Zeit in a morning rather than brave a weekend until the wave effect moves on...
  • Post #23 - May 21st, 2019, 12:54 pm
    Post #23 - May 21st, 2019, 12:54 pm Post #23 - May 21st, 2019, 12:54 pm
    Hi,

    I have never been to Libanais, though someone brought their mushroom soup to a meeting. It was pureed with no chunks. At this occasion, it was the first soup to wipe out and certainly a fan favorite.

    My friend commented it is not always available. She calls a day in advance of a visit to make sure it is offered when she arrives.

    Good soup and apparently good service, too.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #24 - July 31st, 2019, 8:07 am
    Post #24 - July 31st, 2019, 8:07 am Post #24 - July 31st, 2019, 8:07 am
    I was a regular customer at the Touhy location (since it was an easy stop after getting bagels), when it was primarily pastries and I pretty much ignored them after the move. Happened to be passing by a couple of weekends back and ordered take-out. It's now officially my favorite spot (over Shawarma Inn, Halal Guys and the now-depressing Naf Naf). The Beirut-style hummus was a revelation, and it's now my go-to version. Heavy on lemon and garlic with parsley blended in. Excellent baba ghannoush, hummus with shawarma and falafel. The manaesh with zaatar was another standout. Plenty of menu items left to order so I will return soon. And I completely forget to pick up pastries.
  • Post #25 - August 14th, 2019, 9:41 pm
    Post #25 - August 14th, 2019, 9:41 pm Post #25 - August 14th, 2019, 9:41 pm
    One of the best meals I've had this year. Ordered the following:

    Lentil soup to start (w/ a generous squirt of lemon ofc)
    Beirut hummus
    Yogurt cucumber
    Veggie king - wish the falafel had been fresh from the fryer
    Imam bayildi - my #1 recommendation!
    Tour of Lebanon (chicken & beef schwarma w/ toum & tahini)
    Pomegranate chicken liver (tasty if you're a fan otherwise I'd skip)
    Ma'anaeesh

    Tea and lots of desserts, too. I'll update this tomorrow to include which ones we sampled.
  • Post #26 - August 19th, 2019, 11:29 am
    Post #26 - August 19th, 2019, 11:29 am Post #26 - August 19th, 2019, 11:29 am
    Another weekend visit. Tried an assortment of manaesh (in addition to an assortment of salads/dips and the great chicken shawarma). The muhammara and the cheese/zaatar were excellent. And a great bargain for some top-notch dishes.
  • Post #27 - September 2nd, 2019, 5:14 pm
    Post #27 - September 2nd, 2019, 5:14 pm Post #27 - September 2nd, 2019, 5:14 pm
    By request, they will prepare kibbeh nayyeh using only lamb, at a surcharge, rather than the menu standard of lamb/beef.

    I find Libanais to be accommodating, even exceptionally so, and the value of the items are excellent considering the quality.

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