Whole lotta love for Lola of London

LolaLondon Road, Preston

Saturday, 16th August 2014, 1:00 pm

An Egyptian restaurant in Preston? Surely not, I thought upon hearing such. Seems impossibly exotic for a city where, until comparatively recently, our options ran all the way from Chinese to Indian with Italian in-between, most of it average at best.

But Lola of London Road is just that. And if my recent visit is any guide Egyptian cuisine has definitely given prospective takeaway punters something new to ‘sphinx’ about.

Darting home after a quick midweek drink in town – and a long way from lunch – we were after something quick, filling and tasty.

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Well, it wasn’t so quick (our own fault, failing to ring ahead and landing to find the small restaurant area doing brisk business) but the other two boxes were ticked – and how.

From a small but well-thought out menu we went for a ‘Feteer’ (described as an ‘Egyptian pizza’ but a far more novel bite than this suggests) and the Baked Zucchini with chicken and rice.

The Feteer was a joy – a crisp, light, bubbly (closer to a light pastry in texture than dough) folded affair which left not a crumb in its wake. Various fillings are available, we asked the chef to cut loose and give us what he would consider his favourite mix. There were olives, onions, cheese, goodness knows what herbs, and small sweet lamb kofta balls so delicious one taste caused regret the kofta had not been ordered as a main course in its own right.

Happily our Baked Zucchini (AKA courgette) swept away any such sorrow by virtue of being an absolute treat.

A rich, savoury tomato reduction was thick with chunks of unctuous courgette and tender chicken. The rice alongside was lightly spiced, herby and a perfect sidekick.

Great flavours, freshly prepared, £13.90. Ring ahead and you can’t go wrong.

Barry Freeman