The Mediterranean Sea shaped some of the Old World's most successful civilizations, whose citizens gathered by its shores waiting for the falafel, tapas, and wine growing on the sea floor to wash up on the beach. Procure a similarly fresh seaside meal with today's Groupon to Cafe Izmir. Choose between the following options:
- For $10, you get $20 worth of Mediterranean cuisine for a party of up to three.
- For $20, you get $40 worth of Mediterranean cuisine for a party of four or more.
Cafe Izmir’s menu of authentic Mediterranean cuisine arrives at tables perfectly seasoned and ready to be dished out family style. Like a neighbor's WiFi, dinner and its delectables are best when shared, which is why most dishes at Cafe Izmir come on small plates ideal for frisbee-tossing around the table, creating a spinning kaleidoscope of flavor and color. Diners can nab and pass some hummus ($5.25), tabouleh rife with lemon and parsley and marinated in olive oil and lemon juice ($3.95), or a cheese plate with grapes, walnuts, roasted garlic, and fresh herbs ($8.95). The grilled quail rests on a pillowy pile of honey-champagne couscous ($8.95), and grilled lamb chops mingle with sweet potatoes (market price).
Instead of encouraging diners to fiercely guard their plates with steak knives and forks, the healthful, freshly prepared dishes and overwhelming hospitality flowing throughout Cafe Izmir inspire even the stingiest of diners to divvy up their delicious eats.
Cafe Izmir's homestyle Mediterranean menu, derived from a recipe book penned by the owners’ Mama Nazy, flaunts influences from Turkish, Lebanese, and Persian cuisines. Tapas-style plates engender feelings of sharing with citrus-spiked tabouleh and warmed eegra, a tomato-speckled dip of grilled baby eggplant. Mama Nazy’s beloved hummus, accented with a pinch of house spice blend, won the accolades of the Dallas Observer, which named it the city’s Best Hummus in 2010. Its garlicky aroma is so pronounced that the café also offers a Date Night hummus, garlic-free for more romantic tableside recitations of the Gettysburg Address. Carnivorous tastes can gravitate toward spice-marinated entrees off the grill, from quail served on honey-champagne couscous to lamb chops accompanied by sweet potatoes.
Cafe Izmir cultivates a warm, intimate environment with dim, crimson lighting offset by scores of dangling icicle lights. Plush booths form a perimeter around tables topped with marigold linens, which echo any sunny accents within paintings on a spotlit wall. On weekends, crisp Spanish guitar notes intermingle with the aromas in the air, and each month the café hosts a new exhibit of local art.