Meat The Fish has decided to wet its fins near Batroun. The half-grocery, half-restaurant establishment in Saïfi (Beirut) has just opened its latest address in the Marea building complex, just a few meters from the entrance to the northern seaside resort.
The establishment of approximately 200 m² (100 seats), whose terrace overlooks the beach, was designed by Karim Begdache, to whom we already owe the design of the concept stores of Saïfi and Faqra. The architect uses the “simple but chic” lines that were the hallmark of the two other establishments.
“Batroun is an obvious force of attraction, but we weren’t looking for a specific location and we weren’t considering developing our brands there until we met Chafic Saab, the promoter behind Marea. This Meat The Fish at the beach was really born from this encounter. Much more, in any case, than the expected financial potential”, explains Karim Arakji, manager of MTF, who prefers to keep the investment confidential.
Bahaa Karkouh, director of operations of the NBL (Nothing But Love) group, has recruited around fifteen employees for the occasion, bringing the total number of employees in the group to 150, which oversees, in addition to MTF, around ten concepts such as Skirt, a restaurant dedicated to meat in downtown Beirut, or Maryool, an establishment specializing in Lebanese gastronomy. NBL also owns the Royal Gourmet processing workshop and the cloud kitchen which serves all of the group’s restaurants, as well as independent establishments.
Open 7 days a week, you can find the brand’s signature dishes in Batroun, such as the tuna sandwich, the crab-avocado sandwich or the salmon-based Surfside burger. But the opening of this summer address is also an opportunity to reinforce, on the restaurant side, the variety of seafood products offered, such as this black paella (in squid ink) or this grouper with coarse salt . “Another difference, the addition of a cocktail bar with the help of Michel Saïdah”, adds the one who is also the CEO of the NBL group, and a Japanese counter Omakase (whose translation in French would be “Chef, je m ‘depend on you’) of 8 places, called Nara Nori.
Meat The Fish is not the only establishment of the group to migrate to the North: as in Faqra, the café The Backburner is also on the trip. “Even if, in his case, this is a food truck,” says Bahaa Karkouh.
The NBL group is also diversifying into other countries. “For our group, the explosion at the port (August 4, 2020) meant the destruction of three of our establishments, as well as the loss of our central kitchen. However, we continue to fight to be present on this market, to want to open new locations, without ever compromising on the quality of the referenced products. »
A course of action, adds the businessman, difficult to maintain without having to minimize the country risk by also betting on development abroad. First, in the Gulf countries: The Backburner coffee shop has been present in Kuwait for three years with two establishments.
The bet of NBL, which started with Royal Gourmet, the salmon smoking workshop founded in 1996 by Omar and Karim Arakji, is however even more ambitious: in the coming months, Mayha should open in London and Maryool in Kuwait.
This article, produced as part of a partnership with Hodema Consulting Services, has no promotional purpose. This weekly meeting will be devoted to the catering and hotel sector which continues, despite everything, to fight.
Meat The Fish has decided to wet its fins near Batroun. The half-grocery, half-restaurant establishment in Saïfi (Beirut) has just opened its latest address in the Marea building complex, just a few meters from the entrance to the northern seaside resort. approximately 200 m² (100 seats), whose terrace overlooks the…