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Turkish-style flatbreads: olive and cheese; chicken with za’atar and pickled turnips.
No. 50

Pandemic casualization

In a sense, Fairouz Café has come full circle. The posh dine-in Middle Eastern restaurant that opened in Ottawa in 2016 (#46 on the 2017 C100B list) has faced down the pandemic by changing to a casual takeout-based business model — just like its namesake predecessor, Fairouz, of the ’90s. In the casualization process, it has moved from Centretown to more spacious quarters in ByWard Market, providing pandemically suited patios front and rear that can accommodate 150-plus diners. With former Fairouz sous-chef Justin Laferriere in charge of the kitchen, much of what’s on the plate at Fairouz Café (and in takeout) remains as before — house-made pita, excellent dips, kebabs of tender beef, succulent pulled lamb alongside vegetarian dishes of singular quality (eggplant stuffed with onion, tomatoes and lentils; fried cauliflower dressed with tahini and pomegranate, etc.).


Marinated olives, lentil soup and assorted dips and spreads.
Chef Justin Laferriere and service manager Brittany Martin.
Photo Credit: Brendan Burden

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