Follow the bright neon-yellow light to find the Smoking Camel, a Middle Eastern-inspired restaurant from the team behind Byron Bay favourite Light Years. You can’t miss the entrance – it’s a doorframe cut out like a traditional curved ogee arch, and beyond is a space that’ll make you feel like you’re at the ultimate Arabian Nights-themed party. Think chequerboard flooring, orange tiling and neon-lit artworks, plus a disco ball and a smoke machine to kickstart the good times – and keep them going until late.

Modern twists on Levantine cuisine – mixing flavours from Lebanon, Turkey, Israel and beyond – are designed to share. There are mezze options, like smashed falafel drizzled in garlic yoghurt, hummus served with harissa oil and marinated chickpeas, and – to mop up all the goodness – grilled pita bread.

But the barbeque section of the menu is where you want to spend the most time. In the kitchen is a large barbeque and grill imported from Brazil, with a big rotisserie spit mounted inside. Hits from the grill include barbequed king prawns with café de Cairo (a herby butter) and curry leaves; and shawarma-spiced chicken and pickled chillies, drizzled with toum.

As you’d expect from a self-proclaimed “party venue”, there’s an impressive drinks list. Cocktails lean into the Middle Eastern theme. Sip on a Turkish Delight made with Brookie’s gin, pomegranate, cranberry, rose and lime, or The Oasis, the house twist on a Margarita. Beers are from local brewers, and there’s a mix of new- and old-world wines, including drops from Lebanese and Turkish producers.

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Updated: November 6th, 2023

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