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Best Middle Eastern Restaurant

To embrace Saudi culture is to learn to enjoy overeating. Liberate yourself from those blindered Western values by throwing on a flowing, figure-concealing thobe and heading for this cultural island out west. Saudis are famed for their banquets, which can easily include 25 whole lambs, a half-dozen stuffed goats, and a sheep's head or two. The menu and service at al-Salam epitomize Saudi generosity and hospitality in spirit, if not in the exact details; rather than press upon you a roasted filet of camel, Salam's gracious servers ply you with familiar Mediterranean dishes and a few scrumptious things that you probably haven't stumbled upon lately. Begin with a complementary starter of dates, olives, and pickled turnips. Move on to appetizers like kibi, hummus, and koddsieh ($3 to $7.49), then settle into the heart of your meal with selections from the evening buffet, which includes potatoes with tahini sauce, stuffed tomatoes, red peppers, and cabbage, chicken soup, and hummus ($11.99). Or try an order of shawerma ($7.99). It's considered polite to eat and pass plates with your right hand, so feel free to count calories with your left. A cup of cardamom-laced Arabic coffee is final proof of Allah's beneficence.
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Best Middle Eastern Restaurant

Trapped in a grubby mini-mall for more than a decade, this place nevertheless manages to impress falafel lovers with its recipe for savory, deep-fried chickpea balls. But Falafel King, while mainly Israeli, is more than just a one-note song. Turkish salad, spiked with hot peppers; Moroccan eggplant salad; Lebanese ful...
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Best Middle Eastern Restaurant

The menu is chock-full of wondrous Persian cuisine -- which is a politically innocuous way of saying Iranian food. All this may seem quite exotic, but many of the offerings here are surprisingly familiar, like hummus, stuffed grape leaves, and kebabs of chicken, salmon, tenderloin, and lamb -- all tasty renditions but nothing to declare a fatwah over. It's the other items listed that catapult Caspian past the ubiquitous, formula-driven pita emporiums. Absolutely distinctive (and delectable) dishes include khoresht stews of beef, chicken, or lamb; fragrant ashe reshteh, soup plumped with kidney beans, garbanzos, lentils, and noodles and greened with spinach, chives, cilantro, parsley, and mint; and khoresht e' fesenjoon, chicken with an audacious pomegranate/walnut sauce -- jars of which are available for sale next door at Caspian's grocery, Nu Taste. The menu states that "nearly three thousand years of history, tradition, and love have gone into the meals you are about to enjoy," and yet prices are no higher than that of other Middle Eastern establishments that have only 2,000 years behind them. You can't beat that for a bargain.
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Best Middle Eastern Restaurant

Although Ferdos bills itself as "the home of the kabob," the restaurant could crow about nearly anything else on the menu, plus a few side items that aren't. Everything from the hummus to those aforementioned kabobs is cooked up just like Mom used to make -- assuming your mom hails...
Best Of Winner

Best Middle Eastern Restaurant

Kuluck Persian Restaurant and Lounge

Kuluck does something well that most ethnic restaurants in Broward or Palm Beach don't: it's cool. The upscale Persian supper club, located in a strip mall in Tamarac, actually oozes style. With soft lighting, colorful walls with velvet drapes, white tablecloths, and a 20-foot dance floor, the joint is all...
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