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Review: Cava (Rockville)

John Galt | | Jun 19, 2007 06:15 PM

I was happily surprised by our meal tonight at Cava. Cava serves primarily mezze, small plates of Greek food to enjoy with ouzo or wine. Some might say Greek tapas, but Greeks are probably right to respond that that's the wrong way round, as tapas are really Spanish mezze.

While we reviewed the menu, WARM PITA with olive oil, olives, and a declicious tapenade.

Next, AVOGOLEMONO, a chicken, lemon and rice soup. My wife became especially fond of this soup at Sultan's Kitchen, in Boston, MA. While no version ever seems to reach the heights of Sultan's Kitchen, Cava's version was respectable, and would be especially good on a cool night.

Next, SHRIMP LOUKOUMADES. This was my least favorite dish of the evening. An interesting experiment that, while tasty, wasn't a home run. It was six large shrimp indivdually fried in Greek doughnut batter. The harissa aioli was excellent. I'd love it on a sandwich.

Next, MINI SOUVLAKI, three small pita sanwiches of beautifully fatty pork with a zesty tzatziki sauce, wrapped in foil. Very good.

Finally, GRILLED MEATBALLS, which were three juicy balls of charred ground beef seasoned with dill, garlic, and oregano. Excellent, especially with the leftover pita.

The eager bartender was thoughful to remind us that on Tuesdays at Cava all bottles of wine are half price, AND, she said, what you don't drink you can take home. We had part of a bottle of a Greek red called Boutari Grand Reserve, which we will finish tomorrow for dinner. I also had an excellent glass of ouzo, which was elegantly served. Hard to resist, when the back of the T-shirts of the servers says: "Got ouzo?"

I'll be back.