So a few updates from our last week in Paquis, in descending order of preference --
La Caravane Passe: A nice Lebanese restaurant. We sat outside and enjoyed a bottle of Blanc de l'Observatoire of Chateau Ksara, probably the only Lebanese wine I know. Our food was on the whole pretty good -- the falafel was crispy, the labne was creamy and flavorful, and the best of all were the eggplant slices sauteed with garlic. The humus was just ok and I think the bread could have been better. Disappointing were the veggie kebbe (we'll have to try the meat variety next time) and the foul, which as too often is the case when ordered in restaurants, was simply beans with olive oil and some parsley and other spices. Foul proper, in my view, needs to be mashed and much more flavorful -- just the way you make it on the streets of Cairo to be shoved into a sandwich. Their Gâteau moelleux (fondant) was also pretty good and their mint tea was a nice way to finish the meal. Recommended, but not quite as good an experience as Cafe Espresso, or even Creperie du Paquis, I'd say.
Parfum de Beyrouth: A pretty good shwarma shop (try saying that three times fast). We've now been twice. The meat shwarma (shwarma lahmia) is better than the chicken. But both were pretty tasty and the portions are ample but not overflowing (like the disastrous shwarma I got in Carouge, where I had to pick out at least half the greasy meat in order to be able to take a bite). Not outstanding, but solid.
Restaurant les Cinq Portes: A place with a nice ambiance and just-ok food. Miss Persnick had salmon and I had loup (no, not wolf, the fish). Both were fine -- my fish probably the best thing on either plate. There was also a tomato topped pastry, which was uninspiring. So on the whole it was fine, but simply not worth what you pay for it.
Coming soon: our first meal in Lyon, which puts everything else to shame in terms of value and quality, and a neighborhood wine bar in Carouge.