The angular turquoise chairs in the dining room might have been swiped from Betty Draper’s breakfast nook while the multicolored, weathered boards that adorn a few accent walls suggest a brighter take on shabby chic. Diverse influences run rampant in the decor at Amir Mediterranean Restaurant, but it’s the array of jewel-like, mosaicked Moroccan lanterns dotting the space—the focal point of the small restaurant—that reflect the menu’s straightforward focus on casual Mediterranean cuisine. (Cushions heaped on the banquettes that flank the front door offer a clue, as well.)

Amir’s decorators knew what they were doing: the midcentury elements and bright colors give the restaurant a playful feel, but the glowing lanterns are the main event.

Amir employs the fast-food format of ordering at the counter and service was fast and helpful. Food was delivered to our table about 10 minutes after we ordered. The menu includes salads, kebabs, wraps and entree plates that combine some of the smaller items from the menu.
A generous amount of chopped parsley gave the taboule ($5.99) a fresh, green taste, complementing the diced tomatoes. The bulgur wheat had less prominence in Amir’s taboule than some versions I’ve had, but that made for a less chewy texture that was appealing. Garlic was a prominent but not overpowering note in the dressing.

My companion ordered the combo shawarma plate ($11.99), like a deconstructed shawarma wrap, with a combination of beef and chicken shawarma served alongside a pita and green salad, and a choice of hummus or tzatziki. Diners also have their choice of rice or French fries to accompany the dish. The beef was slightly dry, but the chicken was quite tender—my companion said he might order the dish again but just with the chicken shawarma, and in a wrap. The French fries were just a bit oversalted, while the tangy tzatziki—a dip that blends yogurt, cucumber, garlic and herbs—played up the yogurt’s sourness.

The vegetarian plate ($10.99) included three falafel balls, two dolmas, hummus, a green salad, pita and mejadara, a mix of rice and lentils. Despite its simple ingredients, the mejdara had a savory richness while the falafel were unusually light and crispy with an almost fluffy, crumbly interior—some of the best I’ve had—and complemented by hummus that was creamy and garlicky, with a earthy note.

To accompany the meal, minty lemonade ($3) has a tart sweet quality that sets off the subtle spiciness of the food. Diners looking for more heat could boost it considerably with the addition of spicy, vinegary orange sauce presented in a squeeze bottle alongside a far less volatile condiment: ketchup.