What Happens When You Schedule a Dream: Furn Beaino's New Central Kitchen
Three summers ago, mere days before my wedding, I stopped by Furn Beaino in Jounieh for the very first time. I’d heard and seen enough on social media to entice me to pass by the small bakery nestled along the inner highway of Sarba. There, Wissam Beaino, who along with younger brother Samer assist their father Toni in running the operation, greeted me with an infectious smile and a spiced meat pie tens of seconds later.
I would never have guessed that a single spiced meat pie, better known to locals as la7m baajin, would be the start of a solid friendship steeped in the mutual love of good food.
Furn Beaino has been serving hungry passersby for over 40 years, earning a blemish-free reputation as arguably the best lahm baajin house in the country. One solitary bite out of that crisp dough, spread meticulously with fresh finely minced lamb, tomatoes, onions, pepper paste and a squeeze of lemon, and you’ll know exactly what I mean.
With every visit, I discovered a new item, but only after revving up with a la7m baajin wrap. From the savory spinach fatayer to the seasoned soujouk and cheese pizza; from the tangy chanklish cheese blend to the earthy feel of zaatar. Each item carved out its own niche in my culinary core, and I became awestruck with what this passionate family was pouring devotedly into their enterprise.
Over the past three years, I’ve watched in fierce pride as a deep-seated dream of launching a central kitchen transformed from machination of mind to emblem of reality. This will be instrumental in fostering (1) food delivery to the Jounieh area and (2) the proliferation of bakery outlets in the nearby vicinity.
|Behold the new central kitchen, with Wissam (center) assisting bakery staff to prepare orders|
Early this spring, Wissam, who doubles as an instructor at NDU’s Faculty of Engineering, started tinkering in the kitchen with new items to supplement the classic menu (and yours truly was treated to a tasting sesh!). Chicken wraps, pizza, desserts and homemade ayran would form the cornerstones of the expanded lineup, guided perpetually by one unifying principle: premium, premium, premium.
No corners would be cut, no effort would be spared to procure the very best of ingredients. Even the brown dough used in several of the wraps is 100% whole-wheat and oat, a proportion few in the industry adhere to. The moelleux au chocolat and other sweets incorporating chocolate draw on fine Belgian goodness. The panna cotta is chockfull of real vanilla bean. And the ayran? Ice-cold liquid yogurt never spelled out so many merits, and minted, it’s even more wholesome.
|Turkey & Cheese bundled inside 100% whole-wheat & oat bread|
You can count on Furn Beaino’s incredibly supple and light dough to be the centerpiece of each item. But every element pulls its own weight, and I mean that both figuratively and literally in the case of the chicken wraps (8,500 LL – 9,000 LL). I urge you to simply pick one up and let its mass sink in – allow your brain to register just how substantial it is.
|The chicken wraps in white and whole-wheat & oat bread (don't forget the ayran!)|
|Appreciate the sheer weight and wafting aromas of the wraps before you dive in|
Then unhinge your jaws as you prepare for an “indelible eating experience,” as the tagline on the menu suggests.
What to order? Frankly, you’re going to try it all eventually, because your taste buds won’t have it any other way. But if you desire a crash course in the “fast casual” prowess of Furn Beaino, go for any of the chicken wraps, varying only in bread type, sauce, and veggie garnish. The beautifully marinated roasted poultry is a constant.
|Guilt-free Chicken Wrap: Lateral view|
|Guilt-free Chicken Wrap: Top view|
|Spicy Chicken Wrap|
Beyond the wraps, you’ll want to sneak in a slice of pizza, which emerges smothered in a blanket of cheese so liberal you can hardly make out the zesty tomato sauce beneath it. Don’t miss the pepperoni edition, which exhibits a piquant flavor profile (8,500 LL).
|Half pepperoni, half vegetarian pizza|
Furn Beaino’s dessert game is on par with a brasserie's or trattoria's. While the panna cotta isn’t quite as firm as the Italian custard is wont to be, it’s decidedly sweet and rich as condensed milk flecked with vanilla bean (4,500 LL).
|Vanilla bean speckled panna cotta topped with forest berries|
The Molten Chocolate Cake (4,500 LL) is moist to the point of melt-in-your-mouth, decorated with chocolate shavings and a fresh berry medley (+1,000 LL). You’d pay at least thrice that price for the same portion and quality elsewhere.
|Molten chocolate cake with forest berries|
When you wrap it all up, it’s hard to beat the 3-P trifecta Furn Beaino perfects: Price, Portion, and Premium-ness. No matter how you slice it, the verdict’s the same. But now you can bring home a taste and waft of the bakery, seven days a week, 18 hours a day (6 AM to midnight).
#LiveloveJounieh. And all hail the Beainos.
Delivery: 09 22 55 44
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