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Apr 18, 2012 08:05 AM

Dish recommendations at Tanoreen!!


4-5 of us are planning to check out Tanoreen for dinner one of these days. I tried to research a little on what to have and would appreciate some advice,

1. Eggplant Napolean
2. Kibbeh Naya
3. Brussel Sprouts
4. Hummus
5. Fatoush
6. Lamb Fetti
7. Knafeh

It seems like some of the dishes mentioned in blogs, forums, etc. are not on the menu on their website. Do they have a specials menu or are these just dishes that were there a while ago and are no longer available?


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  1. I was there a few days ago. I think everything was on the menu with the exception of the brussel sprouts and perhaps lamb fetti. They do have an extensive specials menu. The flatbread with chicken with sumac and almonds is delicious.

    13 Replies
    1. re: Miss Needle

      +1 on Ms Needles chicken/sumac w almonds flatbread rec

      1. re: tex.s.toast

        I don't see that chicken dish on their menu on their site, is it included on a separate menu? Is that available only in the evening, or for lunch as well? Thanks---I've never been there--and will be in Brooklyn once a week for a while...

        1. re: janie

          It's on the specials menu. No guarantee they will have it, but that dish was present the last two times I was there. Menu is same for lunch and dinner. If you're really intent on trying it I would call them before heading over.

      2. re: Miss Needle

        I don't care too much for the flatbread with chicken all that much, although this is a dish I make at home, so I might be biased in favor of my own version. The brussels sprouts, however, are fantastic.

        1. re: JungMann

          Do you have a recipe you can share for the flatbread and chicken?

          1. re: Miss Needle

            The flatbread and chicken dish is called musakhan. I use whole chicken rubbed with allspice, cinnamon, coriander, Aleppo pepper, nutmeg, black pepper, parsley, garlic powder and a pinch of cardamom beneath the skin and plenty of salt and sumac on the outside. If you want to use ground chicken like at Tanoreen, I would simply stir fry it with the spices and then layer on top of caramelized onions and bread. Top with sliced toasted almonds.

            1. re: JungMann

              Thanks! That sounds scrumptious! It also sounds good over quinoa or any other grain.

              1. re: JungMann

                I hope Tanoreen's is as good as yours sounds. I will be at Tanoreen this week and hope they have the dish. Also that it is an ample portion. Usually flatbreads I get as an appetizer.
                I just read Pookipichu's post and if they don't have this flat bread dish, i'll go for the Lamb fetti if they have that, or do the tapas thing.

                1. re: foodwhisperer

                  The chicken with sumac on flatbread is an appetizer but it has a generous amount of chicken. It's delicious with the toasted almonds although it might not be as good as JungMann's version :)

                  You'd be best off by ordering their best appetizers and the lamb fetti and you will leave Tanoreen thinking the restaurant is awesome. The other entrees will leave you wondering what the fuss is all about.

                  1. re: Pookipichu

                    I had many appetizers. The hummus was pretty good. The stuffed mushrooms were not bad and the chicken cigars were excellent. Salad, stuffed mushrooms, babaganoush, eggplant salad, cauliflower with cheese, and cheese sticks,a few other things were good too. The ground kefta with tahina and a layer of potatoes was my main course. It was a bit too lemony and the meat too dry. I tasted the lamb shank, i forget the name of the dish, but that was very good. There was one dessert, like a type of cheese cake , that was the best dessert. I hated the pistachio ice cream. The baklava was good, and the coconut cake was good. The arabic coffee was excellent. I lived in the middle east for a couple of years, and this coffee holds up to what you get there. The bill was high for Middle Eastern in Brooklyn, $65 a person without tip. The chef and owner I was told is Palestinian, which is the style of cooking I like, that and Syrian which is pretty much the same.
                    However, if you like this type of food, I recommend a trip to Main St. in Paterson NJ, it is like vein gin the Middle East, Much more so than Atlantic Ave. The food is simple there, but very delicious, pretty much at all of the restaurants I've tried there.

                    1. re: foodwhisperer

                      The chef is Palestinian. I am not terribly familiar with the cuisine other than a few native dishes, so I was surprised by the truly intricate spice blends compared to their neighbors to the North. The cheesecake you had was, I think, kanafeh. I love it, but my dining companions were wary after having first tried a bad rendition from Damascus Bakery on my urging. I should've known better since it is supposed to be a Palestinian specialty.

                      1. re: JungMann

                        Yes that is correct it is kanafa. again,I urge anyone who enjoys middle eastern food to go the the Arab and Turkish section of Paterson. It is the real deal.

                  2. re: foodwhisperer

                    The musakhan is not terribly big, though the bread is thicker than the flatbread I use. It works well as part of mezze.

          2. We get a variety of appetizers (Mezze) and one entree for every 2 people to share. It's all good!! Actually, it's all great!!!

            1. Eggplant napolean is a must. Lamb fetti is a must. Knafeh is an acquired taste for some, some don't like sweet cheese and others don't like the technicolor red.

              I would avoid the kebabs, you'll find better elsewhere. I would avoid the sliders, very skimpy. The sambosek are delicious but tiny with little meat, but very tangy and delightfully sour. The falafel is fairly good. The shepherd's pie and most of the entrees, for that matter, are largely forgettable. The fetti is the true standout entree.

              1. Although it was a lot easier at the original location, I still recommend making your way back to the salad/app. case display, where you can look over what's available and maybe talk to someone about anything that looks interesting. It's all fancified Americanized service at the new location but I find that, if you break the ice, the old world approach of talking about the food as a prelude to ordering still exists. That being said, I still love getting the eggplant napoleon & a mixed mezze platter for the table, then getting entrees. As others have said, adjust the entree orders accordingly since, if you get the apps, you won't need an entree per person (or you can take home food). Personally, I do not think the entrees are the star of the show there.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Steve R

                  I find the stuffed grapeleaves (with lamb) to be excellent and authentic. Then again, I have enjoyed everything they make. The complimentary Zatar bread is a treat too!!

                2. Thanks everyone. As suggested, we ended up ordering a bunch of apps and splitting some entrees. We too found the apps to be very good and the entrees just fair. The standouts for me were,
                  1. Raw Kibbe
                  2. Brussel sprouts
                  3. Eggplant Napolean
                  4. The flatbread with chicken
                  The lamb fetti was good too but the chicken fetti was very dry and no good at all. The Knafeh was funky, more suited to breakfast than an after dinner dessert for me. A few dishes that I did not particularly care for were - the fried halloumi and the ice cream. I would most definitely go back for the apps anytime! Thanks once again!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: indiefoodie

                    It's a shame because out of multiple visits and entrees, the entrees range from fair/average to good, while the appetizers are very good to excellent... Their grilled meats and curries have all been tottering on the edge of fair/mediocre. I would approach Tanoreen as a tapas restaurant and steer clear of most entrees.