Most recommended restaurant in Las Vegas: Ali Baba Fine Lebanese CuisineBest restaurant in Las Vegas - Ali Baba Fine Lebanese Cuisine

culinary treasure - Ali Baba delivers full flavor of Lebanese cuisine

dining out


ISSUE: MARCH 2007 PAGE: 62-63


Ali Baba delivers full flavor of
Lebanese cuisine

By R. H. Duke PHOTOS BY Jim Laurie

ALI BABA OFFERS a treasure of authentic and classic Lebanese cuisine.
Ali Baba, Authentic Lebanese Cuisine, features the classic creations of international Executive Chef Dany Chebat. His background ensures the authenticity of this ancient cuisine, with quality and flavors that will not be compromised.
Chebat, a Lebanese native who is in sync with the cuisine of his heritage, received his formal culinary education in French and Lebanese gastronomy in Beirut, and has held chef positions at several 5-star InterContinental Hotels, worldwide.
Lebanese cuisine is internationally popular, rich in history, and sets the standards for other Middle Eastern cuisine. It is healthful, flavorful, and combines ingredients from the Mediterranean with herbs and spices from the East.
It is customary to begin dinner with mezza, an array of hot and cold appetizers. Ali Baba's array of mezza that can be ordered a la carte or pre fixe, are second to none.

RESTAURANT: Ali Baba Authentic Lebanese Cuisine.
WHERE: 8826 S. Eastern Ave. in Colonnade Square.
HOURS: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. (until 1 a.m. Friday - Sunday).
RESERVATIONS: Accepted. PHONE: 688-4182

Most popular mezza are hommos, tabbouleh, baba ghanouj, and stuffed grape leaves. Premium Arak, Lebanon's anise flavored alcoholic beverage, is the perfect accompaniment for mezza.
Savory main courses served with vegetables and basmti rice delights as well. Ali Baba's Basmati rice with its rich aroma, texture, and taste is the epitome of fine rice.
"Every item qualifies as a signature dish, as each is authentic", chebat says. Perfectly char-grilled kabbs include choice of lamb, beef, chicken and flavorful kafta (ground beef mixed with parsley, onions and exotic spices). "We want the main product to stand out, therefore we only use light marinade to enhance the flavor," the chef explains.
Rotissere marinated chicken, marinated quail, and samke hara (traditional Lebanese fish) baked and served with two specially sauces, are available as well.
Ali Baba's wine list is adequate, with several selections from various countries. I suggest the Lebanese Ksara, a full-bodied red, or Massaya.

Lebanese Desserts are delicacies known for their light-yet-sweet characteristic. Rose water and orange blossom water, walnuts and pistachio nuts, and filo dough are key ingredients to many desserts and Ali Baba's selections are the real deal, to be enjoyed with Middle East coffee.
The ambience and decor with wall murals enhance the dining experience, as does the live exotic music and traditional belly dancers for a complete festive evening.
"We fill a niche in the community by offering fine dining, ambience and service with reasonable price points," says general manager Stephen Bellofatto, a 30-year Las Vegas restaurateur. "We take pleasure in accommodating our gests."

The Kabob Combo (counterclockwise from opposite page) is served at comfortable tables where diners may also choose cold appetizers such as tabbouleh, hommos, baba ghanouj and stuffed grape leaves and feast in a richly decorated setting. The lamb chop entree is another favorite at Ali Baba's.

Source: GVH - The Magazine of Green Valley Henderson & Beyond, March 2007, P62-63