You know when you’ve got that Friday feeling but there are still at least 4 hours left of the working day? Well, if you are out and about in Old Town, Swindon and have an hour or so to spend for lunch I really recommend you visit Fez on Wood Street (wearing the Fez it optional!). This restaurant is open most week nights but at lunchtime is only open Friday,Saturday or Sunday so I have been waiting a while to align diaries for a working lunch here and it didn’t disappoint!
Just step inside the restaurant and you are transported by the Moroccan décor, fabulous aroma of cuisine and upbeat music, sometimes you can just tell by walking in somewhere it’s going to be great.
There is a good deal of variety on the menu and after calorie counting all week anything goes by Friday. With that in mind I ordered the vegetarian platter for one and my lunch partner Dave Marshall ordered the meat option. I didn’t realise just exactly how much food we’d be expected to eat! With bread & pittas to start served with tzatziki, tapenade, harissa and houmous dips, olives and stuffed peppers I was already feeling full and the problem with it all being very tasty is you can’t help dunking yet another portion of pitta into the dips. Dave did manage the lion’s share of the harissa but to be fair he isn’t keen on olives so that worked well for me.
We were then served two tapas dishes each, I had halloumi fries and vine leaves stuffed with rice and herbs and Dave had devils on horseback (dates wrapped with parma ham), spicy sausage and beef kofta. Being very generous, or you could say just overfed, I insisted Dave try my dishes as well as eat his own which he did quite admirably, whether this is because he has a small baby at home and was trying to fuel his body to function on his four hours sleep I am not sure but to me all this food with the relaxed atmosphere was making me a little sleepy and forgetful that I had to go back to the office. With those dishes cleared away another set were presented to us, Ibikha which is braised buttered squash, chickpeas & heriza, couscous, Makouda (spiced potato fritters) and finally date and chickpea chicken.
We did our utmost to try and finish off the food but time was not on our side as Dave had a meeting to head off to, whilst settling up the bill our waiter brought out the dessert which was part of the platter and after popping one into his mouth Dave insisted I try the baklava a traditional middle eastern dessert of rich, sweet filo pastry with chopped nuts & honey, it was delicious but we had no more room for the Turkish delight!
With great service, delightful settings and fabulous food I’m already lining up my next visit!