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Baba on Central

“Baba” holds a special meaning for both Debbie and George Sayegh, the owners of Baba on Central. The word is a nod to both of their fathers – “baba” means dad in both Lebanese and Greek –and the two cultures that inspire the restaurant’s cuisine. A wealth of traditional dishes makes up the menu at this St. Pete hotspot, including a selection of spreads (hummus, tyrokafteri, muhammara and pantzarosalata), mezze (charred octopus, falafel, and quail souvlaki), and larger plates, like their signature half-roasted chicken with Za’atar couscous. Looking to elevate your palate? Pull up a chair at Barbouni, a nine-seat, Greek-inspired ouzeri within the restaurant, featuring a raw bar, caviar service, and 48 different tinned fish from around the world. Baba also boasts a cocktail menu featuring Mediterranean liquors. Start your night with a flight of Metaxa and end the evening with an Arak. “We are trying to transport people to the Mediterranean,” says Executive Chef Andrew Duncan, “but also remind them that we’re in St. Pete, too, and celebrate what’s great and local to this area.”

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