A new Middle Eastern restaurant in Plano goes all out for Lebanese food. Called Lebanese Grill, it's a small import from Michigan that features authentic cuisine.
It opened in February with a menu that includes hummus; tabbouleh; falafel; and kebabs of lamb, goat, beef, or chicken. There is stuffed cabbage — sometimes filled with a mixture of ground beef and rice, sometimes ground lamb and rice.
Grape leaves come stuffed with ground meat and rice or in a vegetarian version. There are three soups: chicken parsley, crushed lentil, and lentil with Swiss chard.
Lebanese Grill also serves beef, chicken, and lamb shawarma, as well as a flavorful rotisserie chicken. Homey daily specials can include lamb meatballs with potato, tomato sauce, and rice, but frequently they are vegetarian, says Abuchadi, the one-named manager who runs the place.
"Vegetarians come in because they know we cook the special meals, and we introduce a lot of new vegetarian dishes," he says. "Today we're doing a unique vegetarian version of the Lebanese dish kibbe, made with bulgur, the cracked wheat, and onions. It's often made with finely ground meat, but we've made it with potato instead."
Lebanese Grill is open for breakfast too, serving wraps in options such as eggs with Lebanese beef sausage, or potato and egg. It is also a zabiha halal restaurant, meaning that the meat served has been slaughtered in the more humane methods required for the Muslim diet.
Abuchadi says that they chose the neighborhood as their first foray into Texas because of the mixed cultures in the neighborhood, and they have plans to open more restaurants in the area.
If all that's not enough to tempt you, they're in the process of building a bakery, as well. "The owners are from the Dearborn area, where the pastries are excellent," he says. "We'll have some items you don't often see in Texas, made with puff pastry, dates, and ground nuts, and our own special version of fried pies."