This neighbourhood eatery in Paddington was once called Shouk Cafe. One of its biggest fans, who used to be a guest at Shouk, has taken over the old Queenslander to run transform it into Naïm — now, six years later, the owner B.J. Wall runs the venue alongside co-owner, Vince Estacio.
Their friendship and love of food has remained a constant. Estacio was formerly a chef at Michelin-starred restaurant, Mourad, and he brings his contemporary take on Middle Eastern cuisine to Naïm. One of the stand-out dishes is the shakshuka — eggs are baked with a tomato and capsicum sauce, paired with saffron labneh, white beans and kalamata olives. You'll also nab some housemade challah bread, which comes toasted, to help soak it up. Keeping with the joint's Middle Eastern-theme, you can add an optional merguez sausage as well.