There seems to be a new trendy area developing just where Westport meets Southport. To borrow from our trendy NYC neighbors, maybe we should call it "Down Under (the exit) Nineteen Overpass" or DUNO. In the past year, we have seen some great new restaurants open in this area, including the oh-so-trendy GREY GOOSE at 246 Old Post Road and the latest COROMANDEL, serving great Indian food at 17 Pease Avenue . Now, luckily for us, a second TABOULI GRILL opened 2 weeks ago at its new location at 3381 Post Road. (Formerly home to Ole' Mole.) TABOULI GRILL is making DUNO it's second home and we quickly made it ours.
The new TABOULI GRILL, little sister to the original in Stamford, offers the same authentic middle eastern fare and owner and head chef Judith Roll does an great job keeping things authentic and tasty. This graduate of the Culinary Institute of America travels to Israel, Turkey, Greece and Egypt often, discovering new recipes to add to her treasure chest. The menu, much like the orioginal, is reasonable, kid-friendly, and supremely fresh.
At TABOULI GRILL you will find no trans fats, no preservatives, the freshest veggies and meats, and plenty of whole grains. Readers take note: Chef Roll offers the classic pita, but don't miss the hearty and flavorful WHOLE GRAIN PITA BREAD (both of which are flown in from Israel). Just as the bread makes the sandwich, so does the pita make the dip. From the creamy GARLIC HUMMUS to the silky smooth BABAGHANOUSH, everything ingredient seems to find a grain on which to settle and the texture adds to the dipping extravaganza.
Other solid choices at this new TABOULI GRILL (which can also be found at the original location at 59 High Ridge Road in Stamford - (check out the original ctbites article by Marcy Shinbaum for more info) are the beautifully CARMELIZED CAULIFLOWER PITA SANDWICH - complete with salad, hummus and tahini- the BEEF, LAMB or CHICKEN KABOB (here, the chicken was by far the most succulent and flavorful), and the crunchy FALAFEL which had nice contrast of texture and mouthfeel inside and out.
If you like spice, be sure to add some of the HABANERO RED SAUCE to any or all of these items for an extra kick or the GREEN CILANTRO SAUCE for a cool,lemony zing. For slightly lighter fare, try JUDY'S CHOPPED SALAD, complete with cucumber, romaine, baby spinach, pickled red cabbage, tabouli, and your choice of grilled chicken, beef, lamb, salmon, falafel or feta. Wash it all down with a tall refreshing glass of HONEY MINT LEMONADE. It will make your taste buds smile.
And I learned something at TABOULI GRILL - not all Middle Eastern desserts are (here's that word again!) cloying! Chef Roll insisted we try 3 outstanding after-dinner treats which I thoroughly planned to dislike. I was as wrong as the MAY 21st/end of the world believers! The SESAME HALVAH ICE CREAM was creamy, surprisingly not very cold, and subtle. There were delicate, miniature squares of halvah strewn on top and these were like tiny gems of delight. The BAKLAVA was crunchy and nutty WITHOUT too much honey, and the SESAME COOKIES (a daily special) were spectacular!
TABOULI GRILL in DUNO (Officially Southport, but I just love to name stuff!) is where it's at. Come and get it!
Tabouli Grill 3381 Post Road, Southport.