I was fortunate to have been born into a family of adventurous, free-wheeling eaters. We have incredible appetites and meals can stretch over hours, sometimes blurring into each other. We plan meals while eating meals. We are never far away from a snack. My husband calls this trait “eating like a Tandoc,” and it’s a foreign concept to him. He’s one of those people who eats only when hungry, and then only enough to be full. He also has distinct preferences about what he actually will eat. He and I are truly from different universes. Luckily for him, I didn’t marry him for his eating habits. “Eating like a Gottstine” would be a lot healthier I’m sure, but a whole lot less fun than eating like a Tandoc.
Even though I am genetically capable of eating a lot (it’s one of my superpowers), I am usually not attracted at all to buffet-style eating. Enter Zaytun, a lovely little place that bills itself an “Indo-Pak” restaurant. I have no idea what that actually means, but the food is a fusion-y blend of Indian, Pakistani, Persian, and Middle Eastern and it is really delicious. Believe it or not, I go for the lunch buffet, and everything I have tried there was interesting, fresh, well-prepared and handmade. I didn’t know that I loved Persian food until I tried it, and now I can’t get enough. One of my favorite dishes is a stew of fenugreek herbs, beans and dried lime called Ghormeh Sabzi. It’s exotic and familiar all at the same time. Their desserts are also strange but lovely; I once had a milk pudding flavored with rosewater that tasted like I imagine angels would, if we ate them. It was ethereal.
So, I approve entirely of Zaytun, the little buffet that could. They only serve the buffet at lunch and on Sunday, but the dinner menu looks great and it’s a warm and inviting place to be. Go hungry and bring a friend, so you can try everything.