La Goulette, Kilburn

“I’m just going to go and eat some Tunisian cuisine” is not something I’ve heard people say very often. So, when my friend suggested trying this small family run, Tunisian restaurant out, I couldn’t say no.

We were greeted by a gentleman (who couldn’t speak/understand English very well), and a totally empty restaurant.
It’s worth a mention that we booked a really, really, early time for dinner/later lunch at around 4pm, so it was just us. But, to my surprise, it remained that way until we left at around 6, I can’t quite figure out why that was. It seems that this whole restaurant was being run by that one gentleman who was our greeter, waiter, chef, and ‘picture taker’ for the evening.

A restaurant instantly wins my heart if it provides complimentary small eats at the table whilst we decide on what to order, in this instance, it was bread and an olive oil and tomato dip. We added on a starter of moutabel (blended aubergine and tahini) to accompany the bread. Both these starters/small eats were satisfying but nothing out of the ordinary. Something that did disappoint me was the lack of choices for drinks, I was particularly in the mood for cocktails or fresh juices, but the drinks list was rather limited with just your standard water, fizzy, and coffee.

Soon after we placed our orders, our meals followed by around 10-15 minutes (which was surprising due to the one man single-handedly running the restaurant).

• Lamb couscous: on the whole, this dish was nice. Dominated by the taste of tomato in the couscous (which I happened to like), but limited with its selected number of vegetables. The lamb could have been more tender but the taste wasn’t lacking. The portion was large enough for me to take some home with me.
• Chicken kousha: this was a stew of chicken, potatoes and peppers in a rich clove flavoured ‘shorba’, served in a clay pot and rice. This dish was definitely a winner amongst the crowd I was with, we loved the taste, but whether the taste is authentic , I wouldn’t know.
• ‘Brick’ tuna: a mixed of tuna, mashed potatoes, parsley and eggs. We were recommended this by the restaurant owner and also a friend, although we didn’t actually order this as I’m not a fan of fried food.

The owner is a bit old school and still uses simple pen and paper when providing the bill for the meal, a cute touch!

Food – 3.5/5 – I wouldn’t say it was amazing, but it definitely is above average and worth a try if you’re in the area.

Service – 4/5 – He was sweet! Took care of us from start to finish, although it was a bit hard to catch his attention when we needed something.

Value – 4/5 – we were all shocked when we received the bill because it turned out to be less than £10pp. He did forget to include the starter, but even with that we all paid less than £10. Admittedly, we didn’t have a full three course dinner with drinks, but I still think the portions and price are well worth it.

Venue – 2/5 – the restaurant is a bit of a pain to get to if you don’t live around the area. The closest station is Brondesbury/Kilburn but it’s a 10-15 minute walk from the station. Plus, it seems that it’s always rather quiet at the restaurant. Not much ‘hustle and bustle’ if you like.

SAS – 3/5 – simply because Tunisian food isn’t something you see at your doorstep, I think that’s what makes this restaurant worth a visit.

Overall – 16.5/25

Review by: Azzizi

Address:51 Willesden Lane, London NW6 7R
Telephone number: 0207 624 5800