This Stunning Syrian Cafe Is An Instagrammer’s Paradise • Jardin Du Jasmin

Alex Landon Alex Landon - Editor

Jardin du Jasmin

Jardin du Jasmin is the perfect place to be seen and Damascene.

A common complaint about new London restaurant openings is that they’re purely grist for the Instagram mill, with food a mere afterthought. Sometimes, this complaint is true – but when you can match breathtaking aesthetic with fresh and vibrant food, you’re onto a winner. Happily, that’s the case for Jardin du Jasmin, a luscious Levantine spot that’s inspired a serious case of ‘gram fever.

Jardin du Jasmin
Photo: @bei.bei.wei

We’ll get the obvious out of the way first: this place is pretty as a picture. From the swarm of giant lightbulbs hanging from a plant-festooned ceiling, to the intricately patterned tiles on the floor, Jardin du Jasmin (often referred to simply as “the Jardin”) is Absolutely Bloody Gorgeous.

Jardin du Jasmin
Photo: @jardindujasminldn

The design is evocative of Damascus – nicknamed the ‘City of Jasmin’ – which also receives a literary tribute. On the whitewashed walls of Jardin du Jasmin, you’ll find a a moving fragment of a poem from Nizar Qabbani, the silver-tongued diplomat widely regarded as Syria’s national poet.

Jardin du Jasmin
Photo: @_staymodest

The lines appear in Qabbani’s poem A Damascene Moon, which later reads “From Damascus, love begins” – although if we’re splitting hairs, I’d argue our love began the moment we set eyes on this place.

Jardin du Jasmin
Photo: @jardindujasminldn

Having said all of that, if you’re here for snaps then you’re doing yourself a disservice. Jardin du Jasmin have hewed close to Damascene traditions with their food menu, a delicious, veg-heavy smorgasbord of delights.

Jardin du Jasmin
Photo: @ginandgains

Highlights include horraa osbao, a pasta and lentil dish with caramelised onions, pomegranate, and flatbread croutons, vegetarian pumpkin kibbeh, and kabset lahme – slow roasted lamb with rice, raisins, and pine nuts. Frankly, it all sounds absolutely smashing, and the buffet-style offering means you can pick and choose a plate that’ll suit you perfectly.

Jardin du Jasmin
Photo: @jardindujasminldn

Jardin du Jasmin have the sweet treats to match their sweet aesthetic, too. Traditional knafeh has been known to make an appearance, and their smash hit dessert is a saffron, cardamom, and white sesame cake that is by all accounts divine. Our advice? Come along, dive into the food, and have yourself a proper Jardin party.

Location: 161 Great Portland Street, W1W 5PB. Nearest station is Great Portland Street. See it on Google Maps.
Opening hours: 8am-8pm (Mon to Fri), 10am-8pm (Sat), 10am-6pm (Sun).
Price: salads start from £6.80, buffet plates from £9.75.
More information: on their website.

Featured image: @angelacoomey

Also published on Medium.

Food & Drink