Cedarland Bakery

The east Dayton suburbs hold many surprises, especially in the world of little local restaurant operations. Cedarland Bakery is a great example; offering a specific flavor in Lebanese food amid a larger backdrop of Mediterranean dishes that might be a bit more familiar. Very popular with the immigrant community in the city, the grill enjoys relatively little fanfare from the suburbs because of its low-key presence. Very much a hole in the wall, this place has lots of sweets to take home with you, but you’ll want to try that lunch menu.

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Yaffa Grill

A dive restaurant in Fairborn across the street from Wright State University and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Yaffa Grill is a pretty simple restaurant operation and attached grocery store serving Mediterranean cuisine. Busy during the lunch hour for its variety of fresh food and relatively healthy options. This place is all made for convenience, whether you want carry out or a quick buffet. The food here is fresh and pretty good.

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Andy’s Mediterranean Grille

A bar and restaurant in Walnut Hills, on the cusp of downtown Cincinnati, Andy’s Mediterranean Grille specializes in Middle Eastern dishes that aren’t to be found in many other places in the area. Aiming to be a little more upscale and drawing a crowd for its distinctly Greek cuisine. With belly dancers to entertain on the weekends and a friendly staff that helps serve up hummus, tabbouleh, lamb burgers and a number of other regional specialties alongside more Americanized dishes like pizzas. The spot isn’t the first place you might think to go, but it does have a charm that grows on you after a few visits. It’s the wait time and the price that can make it hard to swallow.

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Café Rakka

Café Rakka doesn’t look like much from the outside, but make no mistake, this is one of the neatest little dives north of Nashville. Just off the Johnny Cash Parkway in Hendersonville, it’s regularly attracting standing-room-only crowds of people of all ages, ready for a truly different dining experience. This city has a lot of real gems, the kinds of places you’d otherwise have a hard time discovering, but this one has received love from the likes of Guy Fieti, Gary Allen and others. If you’re ready for a new culinary experience this place definitely has your ticket on a platter.

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Pasha Grill

Marketing itself as “authentic Turkish cuisine,” Pasha Grill is an upscale restaurant and bar right in the middle of The Greene shopping district in Dayton’s eastern suburbs. It’s actually the second in a family chain, preceded by Cafe Istanbul which opened in Columbus in 2001. With an intimate interior, an arid and picturesque outdoor patio and a variety of drinks in between, Pasha gives a simple feel to a ritzy location. Its food is distinctly ethnic, and in spite of a number of Americanized options, it’s all going to be a new experience for the unfamiliar customer.

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