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Best Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean restaurant

Mast Khiyar, a mixture of freshly diced cucumbers yogurt, raisins, walnuts and fresh herbs at Rumi's Kitchen. The Sandy Springs spot was your pick and our pick for best Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean restaurant in and around Atlanta. Photo: Elissa Eubanks, eeubanks@ajc.com

Mast Khiyar -- a mixture of freshly diced cucumbers yogurt, raisins, walnuts and fresh herbs -- at Rumi's Kitchen. The Sandy Springs spot was your pick and our pick for best Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean restaurant in and around Atlanta. Photo: Elissa Eubanks, eeubanks@ajc.com

YOUR PICKS
1. Rumi’s Kitchen
You say, “The food at Rumi’s is absolutely delicious” and “Rumi’s Kitchen is the best I’ve had in the city. No wonder this place is always packed.”

2. Café Sababa
3. Mediterranean Grill
4. Café Agora
5. Sufi’s
6. Baba’s Gyro & Kabob

Barg kabob -- marinated strips of tenderloin charbroiled and served on a bed of saffron Basmati rice -- at Rumi's Kitchen. The Sandy Springs spot was your pick and our pick for best Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean restaurant in and around Atlanta. Photo: Elissa Eubanks, eeubanks@ajc.com

Barg kabob (marinated strips of tenderloin charbroiled and served on a bed of saffron Basmati rice) at Rumi's Kitchen. The Sandy Springs spot was your pick and our pick for best Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean restaurant in and around Atlanta. Photo: Elissa Eubanks, eeubanks@ajc.com

OUR PICKS
1. Rumi’s Kitchen
AJC Chief Dining Critic John Kessler says, “This restaurant is, at heart, a kebab house, so order a variety of kebabs and have them presented on a communal platter and sided by a mound of white and saffron basmati rice that’s so vast you could burrow in it. Good Persian food, such as this, has flavors that aren’t merely clean but immaculate. Salt, lemon, yogurt, saffron, sumac, grill char: Each flavor comes through as a clear, stark chime.”

2. Pita Palace
3. Mediterranean Bakery
4. Mediterranean Grill
5. Mezza

77 comments Add your comment

Edward

March 14th, 2012
6:49 pm

Cafe Istanbul is terrible and is NOT “authentic”. There is absolutely nothing Turkish about that place. I made the mistake of taking my friend visiting from Istanbul there. I was so embarrassed. For some authentic Turkish, try IstanBlue on Pharr Rd in Buckhead. For great Middle Eastern, Sufi’s in south Buckhead is very nice.

And Kristen Rae, bless your heart, but India is not in the Middle East and is nowhere near the Mediterranean. Please go look at a map.

deanna fiveash

March 14th, 2012
8:09 pm

for fresh food made daily try melody lane diner in marietta off canton highway. everything cooked to order!

Anonymous

March 14th, 2012
11:39 pm

Rumi’s is the best by far. It may cost a little more, but you have to pay for quality.

mark

March 15th, 2012
7:50 am

Sufi’s on Peachtree is amazing!

Nate

March 15th, 2012
9:00 am

Med Grill!!!

MWoodruff

March 15th, 2012
9:21 am

Sheik Burritos n Kabobs & Rumi’s

Hans

March 15th, 2012
2:58 pm

Persian food is the godfather of all foods and Rumis kichean is the best.

Stephen

March 15th, 2012
5:55 pm

Rumi’s Kitchen in Sandy Springs is the best, hand’s down. It takes Persian/Middle Eastern cuisine to a new level.

Angelica

March 15th, 2012
5:58 pm

Rumi’s Kitchen in Sandy Springs blows everyone out of the water. Their ambiance, food, and extensive wine list are beyond those of any other Middle Eastern restaurant in the city.

Linda

March 16th, 2012
8:36 am

Sultans in Sandy Springs is delicious.

PJ

March 16th, 2012
9:47 am

It has to be Nicola’s on Lavista Road. Wonderful food!

jv

March 16th, 2012
1:42 pm

Efes on marietta square

Jeanel Carlson

March 16th, 2012
1:47 pm

Rumi’s by far is the best.

Shahrouz Aliabadi

March 16th, 2012
1:48 pm

Rumi’s by far is the best.

Farrokh Mazahery

March 16th, 2012
3:00 pm

Rumi’s Kitchen is absolutlety the best Middle Eastern restaurant in Atlanta and one of the top three in United State. The quality of food and sevice is exceptional.

Wayne

March 16th, 2012
3:06 pm

Rumi’s Kitchen food is amazing.

sowgy

March 16th, 2012
3:16 pm

Rumi’s food is the best I have ever had.

Ray

March 17th, 2012
11:22 am

Rumi`s kitchen is the best , best dine and wine , best service , beautiful girls ;)

KMK

March 17th, 2012
9:00 pm

The Beirut in Peachtree City is my absolute favorite for Mediterranean food. Everything is consistently delicious, and the service is always great. Try the mezza platter, the Beirut’s Best, and the shrimp and mushrooms, and you will understand why the family at the table next to us tonight traveled all the way from Alpharetta to dine at The Beirut. Oh, and don’t forget to try the secret garlic sauce with pita slices!

takin

March 18th, 2012
1:40 pm

Rumi’s Kitchen food is just unbelievable.

Zia

March 18th, 2012
1:45 pm

There is no debate, Rumi’s kitchen food is number 1 in Atlanta

Bijan

March 18th, 2012
1:49 pm

I thought the best Persian /Middle Eastern restaurants are in LA, but I was absolutely wrong. Rumi is the best

DunwoodyFoodie

March 18th, 2012
1:53 pm

Cafe Sababa, http://www.cafesababa.net, is one of the highest-rated Mediterranean and Middle Eastern restaurants in Metro Atlanta. Their kabobs, lamburger, appetizers, and salads are all on point. Thier weekend Moroccan brisket and other specials are off the charts. What sets this place apart from the pack is, not only the exellent food, but also the friendly and attentive service and the chef, who has a great personality and checks to make sure that you are having a wonderful experience.

jimbob

March 18th, 2012
7:19 pm

Cafe Sababa is excellent. Not a real fancy type of place, and it’s on a pretty ugly stretch of North Shallowford, but the food and hospitality are excellent. I particularly like the lamb burger with some skhug, and maybe a soup with it. They usually have two or three home-made soups that you can get for a side (or purchase frozen to heat up at home). The Israeli-style salads are excellent too.

Tracy

March 19th, 2012
4:20 am

5 Star Review is an understatement for Rumi’s Kitchen! No competition, the best is restaurant in Atlanta, is… Rumi’s Kitchen! Delicious, large portions, addicting and accommodating! The wonderful staff, is well trained and can fulfill your every need.

Crazy T for Rumi's!!!!!

March 19th, 2012
4:36 am

I will vote Rumi’s Kitchen! Authentic Persian food! We came here for a work event with a group of 20. The service was very friendly efficient and absolutely amazing. The serving sizes where very large. The food was so savory! Mint, onions, yogurt and flatbreads. Shish kabobs, saffron rice and several other treats. The Persian ice cream was a perfect, refreshing touch at the end. Our Server,very was very knowledgeable and helped explain the cuisine to my guest. For sure, you won’t leave this place hungry and you will be back for more!

Atl-Marietta Foodie

March 19th, 2012
9:18 am

My vote would be for Sultan’s in Sandy Springs where the food is fresh, prepared right and and reasonably priced.By the way Efe’s in Marietta has been closed for a long time now. I will have to give Rumi’s another try. I was not impressed with my server or my choice of food when I went.