BEST MIDDLE EASTERN GROCERY (2000)

Sinbad

The first thing you encounter when entering Sinbad is the bags of pillowy, fresh-baked pita, just daring you to take some home and pack it with hummus. This place ain't flamboyant, but the array of canned goods, sodas, spices, cheeses, olives, and other savory treats in this dimly lighted shop is enough to satisfy any gourmand with a Mediterranean bent. Of the prepared foods, we favor the stuffed grape leaves (extra large and tangy!) and the falafel (flavorful but not greasy), the eggplant salad, the spinach pie, and the foule muddamas (fava beans lightly dressed in a tahini-lemon sauce). Feta lovers will go wild for the Egyptian variety--extra creamy and just right for spreading. If you can't wait until you go home to eat, sit down and sample the wide variety of hot entrées, and bask in the warm hospitality.

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