Modca Grill in south Boca for mmm good Lebanese
Just tried a new to us Lebanese restaurant on East Palmetto in Boca Raton. It's only been open about 2 months and we're keeping our fingers crossed that it gets discovered so it makes it through the off-season. (It's just over the bridge on the north side of the street. There's limited street parking, but we found a lot behind their building with plenty of spaces.)
We started with an appetizer of baba ghanous -- nice grilled eggplant flavor with a bit of texture (I like it a bit lumpy rather than totally pureed) served with very flatly pressed pita bread. For entrees -- my husband had the lamb chop special served with garlicky spinach and mashed potatoes. The lamb chops were char grilled on the outside and quite flavorful. I had the lamb kabob -- tender chunks of grilled meat -- there were 3 skewers served with sliced red onions, a mix of pickles and those red colored turnip strips, a small mound of labneh yogurt, and a few tomatoes slices. I had the fatoush salad as my side (you have a wide choice of sides) -- a full bowl of mixed greens, cukes, and fried pita pieces, in a lemony dressing. We also did the pot of mint tea -- very refreshing. For desert we tried something called halawat el jabin (sp?). I hadn't seen this ever before. A whitish outside "pastry" filled with a cheese filling of some sort topped with rosewater syrup and sprinkled with chopped pistachios. Almost like a very soft sort of rich blintz.The three small pieces disappeared very fast.
Can't wait to go back. Want to try their hummus, grape leaves, kibbeh, small fried sardines with tahini, grilled snapper, chicken with pomegranates, veal with artichokes, etc. etc. among other things on the menu. They have vegetarian samplers too.
My wife and I went there a couple of weeks after they opened and really enjoyed our dinner. Karen had the same lamb chop special and thought it was excellent especially for the price. They do a great job grilling lamb. I had the Kafta Kebab with a side of masa'aa (eggplant stew) and was equally pleased.
We've been back for lunch several times and while the afternoon service can be spotty, the falafel and other sandwiches are very good. They also make a very tasty lentil soup.
Here's their web site: http://www.modcagrill.com