Mahmoud Kassir learned to cook the dishes he grew up loving in Syria only after he’d uprooted himself and moved to Omaha. His mother, learning that her son missed the flavors of his homeland, made audio recordings instructing him how to re-create, step by step, the classic recipes that he loved. And when he moved to Denver over two decades ago, Kassir decided to open a restaurant showcasing these recipes. The first Damascus Grill opened on South Colorado Boulevard; Damascus’s second and third outlets are also located in the southern suburbs. In all spots, the fabric-draped and mural-painted interior does a fair job of setting the scene, but the food is what has the magical powers to transport diners to the Middle East. Even the most basic items on this menu are prepared with care and attention, so no matter what you order, it's bound to contain a fragment of the Kassir family love that carried this food to this place.