Best ethnic cuisine (non-Asian) 

Farah's Place


Winner:
Farah's Place

Runner-Up:
¡duino! (duende)

Tea steeps in a gold samovar. The scent of cumin fills the air as falafel fries to a crisp brown. Chef-owner Farah Oberlender works the grill herself, preparing tender chicken thighs in a spicy marinade.

Since it opened in May 2011, Burlington’s only Persian restaurant has quickly built up a loyal following. The food is pure home cooking, with a dash of magic. If service is a tad relaxed, it doesn’t detract from the cuisine’s powerful punch.

Many of Oberlender’s biggest fans love her Thursday-night buffets, when she lays out a table with nearly every item from the menu, and diners pay $15 each to partake. Not a bad deal for all the ultra-garlicky hummus, flavorful kebabs and flaky baklava you can eat

SEVEN DAYS: Do you ever see people massively overeat at the Thursday-night buffet?

FARAH OBERLENDER: Oh, yeah. We don’t watch people or check how many plates you have, but when college was on, some of the young people — my God! They come in and have three, four, five plates, and they love it!

—Alice Levitt

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