Get Ready To Pop Your Ceru – It’s CERU, Soho

28 Jul 2018

Streets are empty. The world, its wife and its bit on the side are inside watching Love Island. No. I said it wrong. Apart from me, the world, its wife and its bit on the side are inside watching Love Island. Yes, there are pangs of FOMO (fear of missing out) when conversations turn to who popped whose cherry and who cried about it, but really, I couldn’t give a flying banana, apple or pear. Forgive me.

One of my (many) Love Island-less evenings was spent in Ceru, Soho, a Levantine restaurant (I know, I wasn’t exactly sure who, what, where the Levant was either, but it’s the Southeast corner of the Mediterranean, near Cyprus and stuff). It’s the second Ceru restaurant from founder Barry Hilton, the first is pride of place in South Kensington. Both are as striking as each other, all light wood, sand-coloured walls, touches of sea blues and shiny coppers. Who needs exotic lands when you have this decor right?!

The first food contestants were two egotistically sized bowls of chilli hummus (£4.50) and red pepper dip (£5), both scoring 10 out of 10 for flavour and texture they were left mercilessly fighting for the attention of the pitta bread, begging for it to be dipped in over and over. I found a deep affection for the sultan salad with dried fruit, whole grain rice, almonds and olives (£6) but this was spoilt by feelings of attraction for the brightly coloured peach, feta and red onion salad (£6) prudishly showing off bits of pistachio in a tangy citrus dressing.

Ceru is covering all the food trends of the moment, if those food trends come in the form of an ‘all day menu’ and not quite knowing the geography of your food. As a city which runs on intermittent shut-eye, we’ve waved goodbye to breakfast, lunch and dinner, it’s get what you can when you can. And when it comes to the geography? It won’t surprise me if we’ll be eating fish from the northern hemisphere of Mars and leaves from the south pole of Venus sometime soon.

Hanging out with the deep-fried zucchini and feta fritters (£6) was intense, they consumed me with total desire from the moment they reached the table, but the spiced polenta and feta fries (£3.50) were the real catch, with hints of chilli and coriander flirting with the mouth.

The plates here are plates for the soul, each one playing the long game with every bit of surprising fruit or fresh olive seducing the consumer till death do them part, or at least ‘till a very public break up and a ‘reveals all’ interview in OK.

In all its glory, with the side streets, pubs and sex shops, Soho may not be any kind of island, but when it comes to Ceru there is definitely some love.

Lindsey

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