>> Mombar | Eat the World NYC

19 April 2011



My expectations might have been a little too high coming into this meal, I was expected to be blown away completely. While I was not, Mombar is still a very solid Egyptian option in a block full of them in Astoria.

It's fun to eat here, the walls covered with art, photos, painted wood, stone, and stained glass, it's a true hodge-podge. Every table gets a complimentary plate of flaky, phyllo-ish Egyptian bread (below) to dip in the oil and sesame dipping sauce.

Danger: low lighting conditions and disgusting photographs ahead!

The combo platter ($10, below, for two) is strong, but you get the sense it is ordered by everyone. The proprietor pushes it and starts writing it down on his receipt before affirmation. At any rate, we wanted it, ordered it, liked it, and did not complain.

We could not resist ordering the dish that the place was named for, so with great anticipation came the mom-bar ($18, below), hand-stuffed beef and lamb sausages that also have rice, herbs, and spices, all within. It's stewed with chickpeas and tomatoes and makes an appetizing plate. The texture of the sausages is very soft and chewy, and something to get used to, but more importantly the dish just has a great deal less impact than it appears to.

The highlight of the night was definitely the wonderful salmon ($20, below) which is off-menu but seemingly a permanent "special." The fish is stuffed with potatoes and vegetables inside a phyllo dough wrapper, and is full of juicy splendor. It is a large portion and could probably be enough for two to split with an appetizer, making for an economical meal.

Inside the phyllo.

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