>> [CLOSED] Samarkand | Eat the World NYC

08 February 2009

[CLOSED] Samarkand



This restaurant is Kosher, catering to the Russian Jewish population in Samarkand, and by extension, New York. The city of Samarkand in Uzbekistan was a major city along the Silk Road, while this restaurant sits on the "Boulevard of Death." Two men who fit the type of the burly Russian vodka drinker were the only diners when we walked in, but by the end of our dinner, groups from two to eight had walked in, rearranged the furniture to fit their party, and made themselves at home. Before leaving, one of the two original men took a kebab stick over to a table of friends and shoveled off the meat onto their plates. A gesture of generosity and respect.

We started our meal with the avocado salad ($5.50) which was basically cucumbers and tomatoes in vinegar with a couple slices of avocado added for good measure. I was very happy to see lagman ($4.50) on the menu and promptly ordered a bowl of the medium-spicy, oily soup. The noodles were obviously homemade, and were slurped up before I set my eyes on the tender beef and array of vegetables that joined them.

The lamb and chicken shish kebabs ($3 each) were both wonderfully tender and almost fell of the skewers. It made me jealous that I could not make equally delectable sticked meat at backyard BBQs. Some things are better left to the experts I suppose.

I can't wait to go back one day and order the $120 plov, a dish recommended for 10 people. My fellow diners warned me that just the smell of it can clog your arteries, but I feel up for the challenge.


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