A gold-trimmed façade welcomes visitors into Shashlik Mashlik’s elegant eatery, where aromas of exotic spices and the sounds of music swirl through the air. Though the rhythmic tunes come courtesy of live weekend bands, the delicious scents belong to Shashlik's international delicacies, which are handcrafted from Uzbekistani, Russian, and Azerbaijani recipes and served seven days a week under high ceilings dotted with starlike points of green light. White-clothed tables hold hot and cold appetizers, kebabs, and meat dishes enhanced by the flavors of seasoned lamb and liver. The eatery also whips up plates of grilled shrimp, fried trout, and other seafood so fresh it could have been plucked from Zeus's bedroom aquarium. These rich dishes can be paired with sides of rice and buckwheat, or accompanied by a crisp salad topped with eel or beef tongue with radishes.
Bombay Masala's chefs draw inspiration from the familiar spices and sauces that characterize Indian cuisine and create an eclectic spread of aromatic and flavorful recipes. Brooklyn Magazine heaped praise onto the chicken tikka masala⎯an Indian-style entree historically co-opted by the British⎯by naming Bombay Masala's version one of The 10 Best British Bites in Brooklyn. This particular dish, along with several others, begins cooking in the kitchen's clay tandoor oven, which roasts skewered meats and vegetables over a pile of smoldering charcoal and old love letters. As the skewers bake, the chefs whisk together curries and cream sauces that they spoon over everything from lobster to housemade cheese.
Enormous green letters spelling out its name make Mekong Vietnamese Restaurant hard to miss. Once they've entered under the bright green awning and admired the silky green lanterns suspended over the bar, the vast menu wins diners over with no less than 20 different options for the eatery's fragrant bowls of pho, which many say soothe symptoms of the common cold or smelling too many jars of black pepper. Even if soup is not their thing today, diners have myriad options to choose from. Seafood, meat, or veggies cooked with oyster sauce, sweet and sour sauce, lemongrass, chiles, all burst with authentic Vietnamese flavors.
Gyro Place, a casual Mediterranean eatery based in Brooklyn, sates hungry diners with crisp, hot falafel and loaded pita sandwiches. Cooks roast gyro meat and chicken, lamb, or seafood kabobs over a hot grill, then serve the savory meats over rice, or fold them into pita wraps topped with creamy tzatziki sauce. Besides the signature Mediterranean eats, diners can also order all-American snacks including burgers, mozzarella sticks, and hot wings made from chickens known to cluck the pledge of allegiance.