Armenian and Lebanese cuisines are two types that I am truly not familiar with, but after my dining experience at Almayass in the heart of the Flatiron district, I can now say that not only am I fan but will be making repeat visits at this fantastic spot.
With locations spanning the globe, Almayass prides itself on making authentic and delicious Armenian and Lebanese cuisine for the masses. The NYC location has been open since 2012, and were given a great recommendation a couple of years back by The New York Times food critic Pete Wells, who called it “A welcome family outing.”
Sure, it has a “family” type sense to it in that the majority of the tables seated were large groups, but it also works for an intimate table of two as well. Almayass is beautifully decorated, with rich colors that give transport you to Armenia via NYC. The lush darker colors provide a mood that is perfect for the Manhattanite foodie in all of us, and the cuisine that came with just added onto the amazing experience.
Here is what I highly recommend you trying the next time you are feeling culinarily inspired and want to try something different. For something fresh with a kick to start out with, the Armenian Salad with fine chopped Campari tomato, yellow bell pepper, onion and Persian cucumber is great pick. I am a huge cucumber fan, and it tastes so pungent with the other flavors that it really does make for a great starter dish. Also, don’t forget the hummus, which is an essential. There is so many kinds, but hands down the Hummus with Cauliflower (fried) was my favorite of all the kinds we tried. I’ve been on a real cauliflower kick lately, and the colors in this dish are already so inviting as it has a rich orange color and the taste itself is out of this world fantastic.
The meat options were what I was particularly looking forward to, as I am a big fan of spices on my food and I know that Armenian and Lebanese culture prides themselves on these sorts of ingredients. First off, as a side, always have some Basmati Rice & Yogurt Sauce available. It’s the supporting cast, or the Kelly and Michelle, to the Beyonce of the main courses that just compliment each dish accordingly.
The two meat options that were our favorites were the Lamb Chops and the Filet Mignon Cubed. Filet Mignon and Lamb Chops alone are two of the better cuts of meat that are on the market regardless, however these swam very well in their own delicious swimming pool. The lamb chops are charbroiled grass-fed Australian with the Filet Mignon getting the same “fed” type of treatment. The scents and spices on both were truly incredible and made the overall meal simply wonderful. I highly recommend trying out Almayass for these reasons and more, as it will definitely be your alternative to the norm this holiday season and beyond.
For more information on Almayass, check out their official website.