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Cheap Eats: Kabob Land

posted on August 8, 2014 at 8:03 am

A platter of assorted grilled kabobs at Kabob Land by Mario Lioy

This restaurant space at 3137 Piedmont Road gets around. After recent incarnations as a Neapolitan pizza restaurant Tartufo (at the peak of the Neapolitan trend) and the short-lived Ray’s New York Pizza, now it is Kabob Land. It is a Middle-eastern restaurant from Elie Karam, one of the owners of Red Pepper Taqueria, which has a location next door. The décor and furnishings are inherited from the former tenants and remain unchanged from the style of a generic European airport café, complete with a drink fridge full of bottled cokes and waters. There’s tons of blonde wood and minimalist IKEA chic seating.

Fire in the hole: Kabob Land’s chef, Metin Karasalih, uses the brick pizza ovens (also from the former tenants) in the open kitchen at the back of the restaurant to make much of the menu, which is a mix of Turkish, Lebanese, and Greek cuisines. In a stroke of genius, Karasalih bakes long flatbreads ($11-$13) covered in meat and chopped nuts and serves them on wooden planks with a fresh lime. The crusts are seemingly made from the same fluffy and slightly sweet pita the restaurant makes in house every day.

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