There are a lot of good Mediterranean restaurants in town, places with great falafel, hummus or baba ghanouj. But for a good Mediterranean restaurant to rise to great, it should not only execute the staples well, but also offer dishes that go beyond the basics. And for vegetarian and vegan diners, Damascus Grill is definitely one of the best Middle Eastern restaurants in the city.
The Littleton location is the older of the two Damascus locations in the metro area (the other is in Englewood) and has been dishing up Moroccan favorites for two decades. The ceiling is draped with fabric, and there's a large mural painted on the wall that depicts a view of rolling hills through windows, so that while you sit in this comfortable dining room, you gaze at an exotic landscape. Even in off-hours, there will always be an occupied table or two as well as a trickle of people stopping in for takeout: This eatery is justifiably popular with neighborhood regulars and those who drive in from farther away for its delicacies.
Damascus Grill offers three vegetarian combination plates; the number two, pictured above, includes hummus, dolmades, falafel, fatouch salad, baba ghanouj and mujadara, a lentil-and-cracked-wheat mixture served warm, surrounding a mound of saffron rice. Not only was everything we tried on a recent visit perfectly prepared and beautifully arranged, but the portions were incredibly generous; our leftovers easily stretched to two meals.
The first vegetarian combo platter menu swaps out fava beans for the mujadara, which were just as flavorful. The third platter features moussaka, falafel, zucchini salad, hummus, dolmades and a green salad -- and we're sure it's delicious, but the baba ghanouj is so tasty that we'll have to order it next time as an appetizer to get our fix.
Speaking of appetizers, the grilled mushrooms at Damascus are out-of-this-world good. Succulent and juicy, meaty and filling, they're absolutely worth the stomach real estate they occupy.
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Visit www.damascusgrill.com for more information.