Get a taste of world cuisine

June 2, 2010 

Up for a little culinary adventure? Explore the international offering served at these three new eateries, all in RTP.

At Cilantro Mediterranean Grill (5400-102 S. Miami Blvd.; 472-2424), the specialty is Persian style kebabs. Options include 24-hour marinated lamb, beef tenderloin, chicken, bone-in lamb chops and the ground-sirloin-and-onion kubideh kebab, all available in every conceivable combination.

There's also a selection of salads and vegetarian sandwiches, as well as specialties such as kashk-o-bademjan, a savory dip of sautéed eggplant, onion, garlic and yogurt sauce (the yogurt is homemade, and the flatbreads are baked on premises in a clay tandoor oven). Cilantro is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Just three miles down the road is Screaming Coyote Café (2945-126 S. Miami Blvd.; 544-5925), a counter service weekday lunch spot featuring Southwestern fare - or, as owner James Cardona prefers to call it, "California style Mexican." Regardless of what you call it, scratch cooking is the rule for an offering that includes tortilla soup, made-to-order guacamole, tacos (on hard, soft or flour tortillas), burritos and Santa Fe enchiladas.

If some of the dishes look familiar, that's because the menu is a streamlined version of the offering at Café Capistrano, Cardona's sit-down restaurant in Cary (the North Raleigh Café Capistrano is owned by Cardona's sister).

Two doors down in the same shopping center, Worth It Café (2945-122 S. Miami Blvd.; 381-6493; www.hey youreworthit.com ) serves up scratch-made soups, salads and an eclectic assortment of sandwiches ranging from pressed Cuban to Buffalo shrimp po' boy to balsamic-marinated North Carolina chicken, grilled over a lava rock fire and topped with sun-dried tomato pesto, provolone and homemade artichoke spread.

Owner/chef Chuck Hayworth proudly describes his counter service eatery as "the first farm to table restaurant in RTP." Worth It Café serves weekday lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and offers "curbside meals to go" from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

ggcox@bellsouth.net or blogs.newsobserver.com/mouthful

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