The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene
Ahuva's Grill, Hewlett: First bites
At Ahuva’s Grill, a new glatt kosher Middle Eastern restaurant in Hewlett, a recent lunch turned out to be a lively affair.
The meal began with warm pita and a gratis assortment of accompaniments that included two kinds of cabbage salad, a corn and pepper salad and the kind of chunky dill-flecked egg salad you’d want to make into a sandwich.
Two of us shared a generous combination appetizer assortment ($11.95) whose highlights were a smooth, tahini-rich hummus and garlicky babaganoush, as well as matbucha, a vibrant salad of stewed tomatoes and roasted peppers and, finally, some of the brightest, most herbal falafel, or fried chickpea balls, in recent memory. Ordered with a side of lafah ($1.50), a flaky, warm folded house-made bread similar to Indian paratha, this would have been meal enough.
But there was more. A bowl of rich and savory Yemeni chicken soup ($8.95) contained about quarter of a bird. The only letdown was a dish called malawach, described on the menu as “crispy Yemenite pancake served with a hard boiled egg, crushed tomatoes and hot sauce.” All we got, at first, was the pancake, burned and a bit oily. A request for the promised accompaniments resulted only in a dish of crushed tomatoes — after about a 10-minute wait. “They’re making it fresh” was all the waitress offered as explanation.
Ahuva's Grill is at 1326 Peninsula Blvd., Hewlett, 516-341-0400.
Above: Combination appetizer platter at Ahuva's Grill in Hewlett