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Sitti-Raleigh, NC- One Person's Review


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Sitti-Raleigh, NC- One Person's Review

burgeoningfoodie | | Jun 29, 2009 08:20 AM

Given that my lady day and I enjoy Mediterranean food, had heard positive things about Sitti and had recently seen lots of people there around dinner time, we decided to check it out after a show on Saturday. I don't necessarily care about ambiance unless it is a part of the reason for going out (say a romantic dinner). The space for most diners is well spaced and evenly lit. I do enjoy the fact that those sat near the front of the house can people watch. I was tempted to explore the downstairs seating and courtyard, but was a bit too self conscious. I digress.

We started off with some mezzes both hot and cold. We shared a the Halloumi (sp?) which is a cheese dish with dates and onions. It was very good though the dates were sliced in a way that almost made them look like red onions. It reminded me of one of my favorite tapas. I ordered some Kibbee Miklee (there are 4). This was also very good though I'd never had it before in other places. The meal is accompanied by pitas which IMO were not the best nor representative of what Neo Monde can do. They were too light, too caked with flour and not left on the pan to darken long enough.

As main courses, she had Laban Bi Khiar and the Beef Shawarma. I had the Fatteh with Lamb. She enjoyed her Laban which tasted to me basically like a chunky Tsaziki sauce and the Shawarma which came with mini pitas and tahini. I wasn't quite sure what to expect from my dish. It looked nice. The lamb is four chunks in the middle with the rice undertneath and a yogurt "dressing" drizzled on top. There was a lot of liquid in the bottom of the dish which caused the 4 "crispy" phyllo chips to be soggy. I don't even know what the point of the phyllo in this dish was as it didn't provide anything to it. I was not sure if the lamb was meant to be cut up as the pieces weren't terribly huge, but weren't terribly small either. I would say they were the same size as a piece on a kebob.

The lamb was cooked well and tasted fine. My complaint about the dish outside of the mystery of the phyllo is that it all tasted the same. The only flavors we had were either lemon or yogurt. The Laban had the hint of cucumber that tzaziki has, but not much else. I could taste the lamb when I ate it, but due to its surroundings was also flavored with lemon which was overwhelming. I did not have any of the shawarma by itself and can not attest to that.

Based on our first visit we will be back to at least try other dishes. We both agreed that the mezze that we had initially were better than the dishes we ordered for entrees. We also both agreed that we liked the space and that we've had much better Mediterranean food elsewhere in the triangle. In conclusion and only based on a one time visit, I would say that the restaurant is okay. Not super but not horrible. It does provide something other than gyros and falafel and thus offers a different type of experience. It's proximity to Moore's Square and roughly 5-7 blocks from the Progress Energy center make it an ideal spot for someone who wants something different and doesn't want pub food.