Sunday, July 19, 2015

Zeitoon a pricier Cazba

Click to add a blog post for Zeitoon Restaurant and Grill House on Zomato Portions at Zeitoon are comparable to Cazba with prices of mains is higher by up to a few dollars (partially mitigated by their weekday specials). Also, you can apparently have "no rice" and shave $1 off the price of your main. A great option if you don't want the carbs.
Still, price is okay for a filling meal as long as you realize a lot of that will be from the carbs (which is the same with Cazba).

It's a smaller place with good table spacing and easily movable tables, and some outside seating. Since it is not right on busy Denman, curbside seating actually works. No real ambiance to speak of, almost like a diner or cafeteria.
You can make reservations! If this is important to you, it may be worth the extra dollars per head on mains rather than hope for large-group seating at Cazba.

Contrary to a lot of online reviews I've read, our first visit to Zeitoon didn't see any lousy service. We got an attentive server very patient with people new to the cuisine. She also dropped off three large pitchers of cold water on our group tables so water was never an issue. Yeah, it's not the same as having water topped up by a busser, but neither was there any wait.

Dolma ($5.95) green vine leaves stuffed with rice, parsley, mint soaked in sunflower oil. Served with garlic shallot dip.
  • Creamy-tender rice filling. Pretty tasty with the dip, which doesn't adhere very well to the vine leaves, so either scoop it on or dip deeply.
Fesenjan ($12.95) stew made with pomegranate, walnuts, and chicken served with basmati rice
  • Had it with chicken this time. Looked like large cubes (about a cubic inch) of chicken breast meat. A bit dry, but that's common with breast meat.
  • Not as sweet as at Cazba (where it is $11.99). You can therefore eat the stew without anything to temper the sweetness (i.e., you don't need rice, salad, bread, or any such sides to accompany your meal).
  • Substituting rice for their flatbread cost $2, but they also took $1 off the bill for "no rice".
Lamb Shack ($13.95) slowly cooked in house sauce, served with baghali polo (basmati rice, dill weed, lima beans)
  • Fall-off-the-bone tender meat. Otherwise, lamb is lamb.
  • Comes with a small bowl of what was probably the stew/sauce that it was cooked in.
TIP: If you are seated near the back wall, watch out! The wooden shelving protrusions on the wall do not have rounded corners, and are fairly low. Yours truly whacked his noggin' on one. :-(

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