|113 D Street|
|Mon - Thu, 11:00 AM - 9:30 PM|
|Fri - Sat, 11:00 AM - 10:00 PM|
|(530) 759-1080 (Fax)|
|Cafe Med Menu.pdf|
Café Méditerranée is a pleasant Middle-Eastern eatery with more of a "restaurant" feel than Sam's Mediterranean or Ali Baba and with only slightly higher prices. But for those higher prices, they throw in a couple of sides, which makes this actually a good value. They specialize in Armenian and Greek casual dining including kebobs, shawermas, falafel, and pastries. Sides include muhumara (a mix of pomegranate and walnut), hummus (ground chickpeas), a smokey eggplant-based appetizer called babaganoush, a fresh taboule salad, and with a side of tzatziki (yogurt cucumber dip).
The dessert selection is quite broad, and includes an abundance of delicate treats you can't buy elsewhere in Davis.
Students may not be welcome to study here. The owner has been reported to kick out students if they linger for longer than 30 minutes, or if they pull out books and laptops. Some claim that — regardless of whether students buy food and drinks — they will not be allowed to study in the cafe. On the other hand, some people say that they have studied there after ordering food. It may be coffee and side items that aren't seen as sufficient purchases to be there for hours. See comments below.
According to early comments on the wiki, and later verified by the Davis Enterprise, in early May 2011 the owner Ashot Manukyan was arrested and charged with three felonies and a misdemeanor after investigation into an alleged sexual assault on the premises reported on February 1, 2011. In a preliminary hearing, Judge David Rosenberg allowed the case to proceed to an arraignment set for July 27, 2011. The case was initially set for trial on January 23, 2012, but the trial was rescheduled for the week of June 25, following a change in defense lawyers. At some point, the trial was postponed by a few more months. All this time, Manukyan remained free on $100,000 bail.
Manukyan made a plea deal in early September, 2012. He pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor false-imprisonment charge. He also pleaded no contest to a sexual battery charge in an arrangement known as a deferred entry of plea, in which the judge and the parties agree that the plea will not be accepted or entered, nor will the defendant be sentenced, unless he violates his probation on the misdemeanor charge. Judge Rosenberg sentenced Manukyan to three years of probation, 480 hours of community service, and at least 16 weeks of counseling. Details here.
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Reviews from 2005 through 2007 ~ 27 comments.
2008-01-07 16:00:22 I have eaten here about 5 times and it is always really good food the chicken shawarma is my favorite. My only complaint has been when I get it to go and they forget to put in the cucumber dip in the bag last time I double checked the bag and they forgot it again but when I complained the wanted to give me 2 orders of the dip for free. I will keep eating there as these things happen plus I love the chicken shawarma. —LongtimeDavisite
2008-01-12 21:40:47 I really love their food—I have eaten there many times—I cannot count it. I love the chicken shawerma with 2 sides (yogurt dip and ikra) and the lamb chops was really good, too with some wine. I really like a waitress who works there (I guess she is a Philipino), she was always nice, friendly and very helpful. The owner also was so nice—he always said the same sentence every time I went there "hi guys, nice to see you" OR "How are you doing today" :) —Lorna
2008-01-26 21:50:09 So tonight was Cafe Med. Good times. My dinner-buddy ordered the veggie plate and I got the beef kabob dinner. Both were delicious and surprisingly satisfying (and I have big appetite). The hummus was good tonight, but I've had better (and thicker). Not a fan of the runny stuff. I recommend the lentil soup. If you like pepper, do what I do: Add a ton of pepper and it becomes even tastier! —CurlyGirl26
2008-01-29 14:07:58 I went there to have dinner 2 nights ago with my family who was visiting me, I took them to this place and my family just hated it. We ordered some fallafels and they were BURNT and the tahini sauce was watery and sour—horrible taste!!!. The potato salad was the worst (watery), and chicken kebob wasn't really tasty at all. I was so dissapointed and I am not coming back.... —randiv
2008-01-29 14:13:46 add one more opinion..... I prefer and recomend Sam's Restaurant —randiv
2008-03-01 14:36:56 The owner quite rudely told a group (of six) of us to not come back after a year of meeting there on a weekly basis. He said that "STUDENTS AREN'T WELCOME HERE". He stated that ordering coffee and side dishes were not substantial enough to justify our presence and that we should go elsewhere. Could be understandable were this cafe EVER BUSY when we met. Week after week we were quite literally the only people there. All of us were confused because we thought that this place was a for profit business. The owner is unnecessarily unpleasant. The perennial "Help Wanted" sign in the window makes sense now. —egoideal
2008-03-01 18:06:22 i've eaten here before with co-workers and friends...and i'm a very picky eater (meat and potatoes only, please) LOL............anyway, I *always* get the chicken schwarma and french fries. I've always enjoyed it too. I'm not sure about anything else on the menu as i've only had the chicken. The only comment/(not really a complaint) i would have is whenever we order fries...they *ALWAYS* have one or two drops of ketchup left in the bottles (all of them)...it's surprising. LOL maybe it's just bad timing on my part....anwyay, thumbs up for this place from me. —michaelG
2008-03-27 09:33:01 Do Not Tip on Credit Card. The owner keeps those tips for himself. The last time an employee complained, there were suddenly not enough hours for them. If you want the staff to receive the tip it has to be in cash. —Cecil
Thanks for your information. We'll not coming back amymore....
2008-04-02 20:57:31 Tonight was awesome! The food was great and the service was spectacular. I'll tell you why. I wanted to pick and choose a few items. Not only did they accomodate me, but at a reasonable price. And they were so nice about it, too. I highly recommend this place. Oh and order the Greek salad. It's tasty. —CurlyGirl26
2008-04-18 23:27:46 Café Méditerranée is one of the best available Middle-Eastern restaurant. kababs are just awesome, i have become a reular vistor over the year. —clubJWP
2008-04-20 18:41:37 awesome, quiet place to eat and relax. Food is great, and the service is pretty good. If you like Mediterranean food then this place is a definite must! —ASQWIK
2008-06-01 00:33:28 YUMMY. I had the lamb and the chicken. The sides were awesome and the pita was fantastic. It was all so tasty! —Esther
2008-06-03 19:10:07 its true that the credit card tips do NOT go to the cashiers, but they DO go to the cook- who is not a co-owner and probably doesnt make as much as he deserves without the tips. —HannahYang
2008-06-06 08:59:27 Love the chicken caeser salad. Very different because the chicken is roasted and still warm. The croutons are not good though and they should just skip serving them. The schwarma is good as well and it is great to have choices for sides. All have been good. —LokiAbbi
2008-06-26 21:52:54 I really wanted to like this place, especially because of all the good reviews, but I wasn't crazy about the food here. Sitting on that patio staring at the funeral chapel every time I glanced up might've subconsciously had something to do with it, but primarily it was because my chicken wrap had a very dry pita and wayy too much tahini pouring out the bottom everytime I took a bite. The desserts did look promising, but I probably won't be going back to try one anytime soon. —SRB
2008-07-01 11:30:34 I really enjoyed the hummus, tazaki and mushama(sp?). I found the atmosphere quite nice for davis and the service was great. I'm definetly going back again. —JamesLDownie
2008-07-08 23:50:49 New to the DavisWiki community, but while i am on i must give props to the best chicken shawerma in town!!!! Thanks!!!! —Edhartke
2008-09-13 22:54:01 My family and I used to eat here on a fairly regular basis (Our shop is right next door). The lamb is wonderful. But I would stay away from the deserts, as the last few times we went, the cream filled treats (Boston cream pie, vanilla cream puff thing, and some other creamy pastry) were all spoiled. Even the replacement pastries they gave us were spoiled too on 2 occasions. Their excuse was that the pastry fridge was broken. If its broken then stop using it!!! They gave my son some cookies since they had no good cream puffs left, but when we got back to our shop, we realized that the cookies were stale. Come on!? After all of that, it makes me wonder about the rest of the food. —Aaron.Curtin
2008-10-08 22:17:30 Amazingly delicious food! I ordered the chicken lilu, and it was delicious, and a great deal. For ten dollars you get two kebobs, rice, pita, and two sides. I LOVE THIS PLACE —Heather
2008-10-15 02:10:43 Warm & cozy decor. I like that you can order small portions of many items so you can try a bit more off the menu. I also like that they have a couple bottles of chili-garlic sauce out so you can add as much spice to your food as desired! —AprilAries
2008-11-15 13:34:47 Very clean interior, friendly staff, and very reasonably priced food. This is one of my favorite eating places in Davis. —Xenophon
2008-12-03 19:10:45 Is there wireless? —IrinaChakraborty
2008-12-11 23:51:20 This place is a bit tucked away, so it's easy to overlook it — every time I go, I vow to go more often. The falafel is crisp and hearty, the baba ganoush is divine, the hummus has just the right proportion of lemon to garlic. I need to explore more of the menu (one way to do that is to order "five sides"), but so far I've not been disappointed. —CovertProfessor
2009-04-01 20:22:15 So here's an update on our overall experience with this place. MY family is never going here again. The food is good , but there's better in town, like Sam's Mediterranean or even Ali Baba. The main reason we won't return is not due to the quality of the food (though we have had issues with their spoiled food multiple times). The owner is an ASS. We got into a shouting match this morning over stupid stuff regarding our business. He's a rude, pompous, egotistical jerk who tries to talk/yell over you to get his opinion across. I'm thirty years old, I don't appreciate being talked down to like a child. I'm never going there again. My wife and kids would meet me here to eat lunch at least 3 times a week so that's quite a bit of money they're losing. Their loss, not mine. —Aaron.Curtin
I agree that a business owner shouldn't shout at a customer, but it's a little hard to judge this without knowing what the disagreement was about. —CovertProfessor
I'm with, Covert. What really happened? What precipitated the owner's response? I agree it's horrendous, but I doubt you were just sitting and minding your own business, eating lunch and the owner just came out of no where and started shouting at you. For me to stay away, I need more than, "We got into a shouting match this morning over stupid stuff because he's a pompous, egotistical jerk [sic]." He might be, but you haven't really said anything i can hang my hat on. I need to know what the "stupid stuff" was. . . CurlyGirl26
2009-04-04 23:30:28 In response to Aaron.Curtin: yes, the owner is an ass and is at times rude to customers. However, the argument that the two of you got into did not occur in regards to your being a customer. While what I know of the argument sounds like the whole thing was pointless, portraying the incident to the public as an owner yelling at a customer is an outright lie! The argument dealt with two business owners being petty about a sign! So, telling people not to eat at a restaurant because of this is just as petty on your part as he was for starting the argument in the first place. Also, the food at Cafe Mediterranee is dealicious. Personally, I love it all. —nobodyspecial
2009-04-05 08:17:09 Actually, yes... the first part of the argument was over the new placement of a sign (which I moved back prior to talking to him). He accused me of breaking the law by placing my "A" frame sign on the lawn bordering my driveway pointing toward my business. No such law was broken on my part, as the area in question is city property (past the sidewalk toward the street)and can be used by anyone. What's funny, is that he is doing the exact same thing with his "A" frame sign on the other side of his property border that is shard with some UCD offices. He also accused me of having my customers park their bikes in "his" bike racks while conducting business with me. This is absurd on 2 parts, as the racks in question are city property and for the use of the general public. That, in addition to the fact that I have to see the bike in person in order to repair it just makes no sense for me to have my customers park their bike on the street, especially when I have plenty of racks in and outside of my shop.
But the second and main part (When we started yelling) of the argument was from a customer's standpoint, the argument escalated over comments he made regarding my wife and children. He felt that my family's DAILY purchases did not warrant my children using his restroom while waiting for their food to be prepared or packaged. Also, he did not like my wife parking in front of his restaurant in the morning (Before he is ever open, she leaves around 11am or so to pick up our youngest from Kindergarten) while I unload things to the shop. I am in general a very patient person, and hate confrontation, but when you make stupid, untrue statements about my family and try to talk over me like a child, no I will not support your business. That said, yes, the lamb is pretty good, but I'd still stay away from their custard filled pastries, and don't use the restroom while your food is being packed up. That's what the main part of the argument was about, the stupid !@#$% restroom. —Aaron.Curtin
Sounds like the two of you could benefit from sitting down with a neutral party (a mediator) and sorting things out, since you share a property line. Sounds like things got heated and then escalated (or more accurately, degenerated). But it would benefit both of you to get along. —CovertProfessor
I'm more than welcome to the idea. —Aaron.Curtin
2009-04-05 11:21:08 Again, I agree that the argument was completely ridiculous and probably escalated to a point that was unnecessary. However, these "daily purchases" mentioned are COMPLETE exaggerations! And as for being spoken to like a child, I see posting about this argument and telling people to stay away from a restaurant based solely on this is a childish act in and of itself. —nobodyspecial
My regular purchases are not an exaggeration. I usually purchase most of the baklava in the case, or get the Boston cream pie along with a drink when I don't eat lunch there. These purchases were made by me in person, or by one of my employees for me. When I did order something for lunch, I usually send someone else in to order as I am too busy to wait to sit down and eat. So unless you're claiming to be an employee who can verify or disprove my statements (thus making yours a biased view, either that, or you're stalking me which is pretty creepy), please keep from trying to make me out as a liar. As for the childish statements on my part, yes I apologize, but I was still irate over the treatment I received. So I have since then edited it, and given a better synopsis of my point of view. —Aaron.Curtin
2009-06-26 23:37:57 All I have to say is that the cucumber dip is awesome! The owner is very nice. He always has a big smile and even gave me a plastic cup to let my friend's dog have a drink. (Mind you, it was outside.) —deathstare
2009-08-20 20:54:12 Just went to Cafe Mediterranee for the first time in a couple months, and was greeted by a "Grand Opening" sign. Thought "uh oh." I don't know if it's under a new owner, or new management, or what, but whatever it is, it is a real shame. The food took *forever* to arrive, the staff seemed clumsy and unsure of everything (though I did recognize a few long-timers), and apparently whoever left took all the old recipes with him or her, because food was bland and changed. The interior has been redone, and while very nice, is a *total* mismatch for the food and atmosphere a mediterranean or middle eastern place should have. It now looks like the lobby of a quaint Victorian B&B on Nob Hill. And the coup de grâce: the music playing was old Burt Baccarach and Frank Sinatra songs. The song playing as I left: "The Best Is Yet To Come." Sadly, it seems the best is in the past for this restaurant. Total bummer. —DavidBenjamin
2009-09-12 19:00:53 I just ate here the other day and the management has definitely NOT changed. Yeah, the inside may be re-done, but thats about all that has changed. THe food is still great. I had the Beef shawerma pita wrap, which was better than before, and even stole some food from the people i was eating with. I noticed that the prices had been raised slightly, but on the flip-side the portions have also increased. The service was pretty good and i really didnt have any problems other than the fact that there was line and we had to wait to order. But all in all, i love what they did to the place; the food and atmosphere make Cafe Med one of the best places to eat. If your a student, which i am, you cant really get more food for the price unless you go to IN and out (and that can get old). FYI, i have studied there before and i was not told to leave...but i guess if your having study groups there and lingering for like an hour and a half, that would bother me too. Oh yeah, since it was my buddy's birthday, the owner (or manager?) gave us free desert and these little coffees to go along with it...he's the man! —aggie123
2009-09-21 17:06:27 I have been going to Cafe Mediterranee 5 years now and I LOVE IT!!! I don't remember a time that I have had a bad experience. The food has always been fresh,hot,delicious and consistent. After the renovations 09 the prices went up just a fraction. Hello! Where in town can you get a decent glass of wine for 3.50? The quality has always lived up to my (and my friends) expectations. One of the Davis true treasures. —ashleyinthemist
2009-09-24 17:01:53 Went here for lunch today craving a shawarma, was very dissapointed. The beef was lukewarm and flavorless, the pita was bland. Not a big fan. —KevinAdamski
2009-10-21 00:45:13 After hearing two positive reviews from others I was jazzed about this place, as I live only about a block away and LOVE middle eastern food of all kinds. Sadly, this place was a MAJOR disappointment. I complain a lot about the food in Davis, but this was actually obscene in my opinion. I ordered the vegetarian plate along with a lentil soup and a piece of baklava (over $17!). Of the five items on the veggie plate the only one I could eat was the hummus, which was actually maybe the most flavorless hummus I have ever tasted. I literally left the others almost untouched, so sad! When I got the lentil soup I realized it was made with chicken broth and I am a vegetarian. I should have asked about the broth but in my defense, I have been a vegetarian for over a decade and honestly have only been to maybe 1-2 middle eastern places (out of at least 3 dozen or so) that actually use chicken broth in their lentil soup, because it's a great option to keep open for veggies. When I told the woman working there my plight she just shrugged and said "sorry, I can't do anything"— any normal business would have swapped out the soup for me. I was being very polite, etc. I would NEVER come back here. What I did taste of the food was flavorless and of a runny, almost rotten seeming consistency and I honestly believe they use store bought cucumber dip and hummus. That is disgusting and shameful. :( —soledad101
2010-04-04 02:36:24 I usually don't comment on this wiki, but I logged in specially to mention how bad I felt on my first visit at this place today. I went to grab a quick dinner and was treated by staff that wasn't sure what was going on (refilled someone's glass of beer thrice to adjust quantity, forgot to ask my friend about choices of sides, forgot to add my tea to the bill, etc.). As if this wasn't enough, the food took forever to arrive in an empty restaurant (only two other customers besides us). About 20 minutes into the wait (that's for two chicken shawarmas) they served me what I can only call 'yesterday's shawarma.' The chicken was hard as rock and guaranteed leftover, and tasted nowhere near a shawarma. I didn't do much about it then, but I'm pretty sure the severe headache I now have is a result of that and I think I might puke soon.
At one point the server told me he'd fetch a glass of hot water for me (for tea), but never came back.
Hands down worst place ever. Won't go again. —scrizer
2010-05-19 22:08:00 Food was flavorful and tasty but the service was terrible!! One of two orders were correct and we were given a very difficult time when we tried to correct the wrong order. The server who brought our food to us was very argumentative and rude about the misplaced order. If you're willing to put up with the poor service, the food is tasty. —NMgal
2010-06-21 21:30:49 Love the chicken shawarma here. Had it on rice instead of a wrap. Very tasty! Very pleasant sitting on the back deck. —CEMcG
2010-06-26 23:17:59 I just went to Cafe Mediterranee for the first time and it was awesome. I sat on the back patio, which was nice, but there was a lot of traffic in the parking lot behind the restaurant.I ordered the falafel with bulgur pilaf (you can choose rice), which came with two sides and pita bread. I chose babaganoush and the eggplant ikra (roasted egglplant, sauteed onions, grilled tomato and bell pepper). My companion ordered the lamb kebob with bulgur, hummus, and muhamara (roasted red pepper, bread crumbs, chopped nuts, and pomegranate molasses). The food was delicious, especially the lamb. You might want to order extra pita bread($.50 a la carte) if you want have enough to finish the sides. The two entrees, along with two sodas, came out to a little over $28.00. —reviewaskew
2010-10-30 16:11:17 I liked the food here and you get a lot for what you pay. I tried some desserts though and they kind of sucked. Also, the guy who owns the place is really mean to his employees and he doesn't exactly try to cover it up in front of the customers so it's pretty damn awkward. —elgreen
2011-01-25 21:02:58 The food is good but Sam's is better and cost less. Also, Café Méditerranée does not take American Express. —busthead
2011-02-02 20:33:04 So apparently the owner locked an employee in his office and forcefully groped her the other day and now she's pressing charges on him. Plus, an ex employee said one day the owner grabbed her purse and dumped it out and started looking through it to see if she had stolen anything. Neither one of those are ok. And as for the tips, it doesn't make any sense to give one person on the grill all the credit card tips and split the cash between 2 or 3 people. The owner should pay the grill guy as much as he deserves and split the tips evenly amongst all the employees. On a side note, I like the food here but it's way too expensive, and I just don't think a person as mean and cruel as the owner deserves my business or anyone else's for that matter. For the record, I do not now and have never worked here before. —Smahan
2011-05-11 21:08:16 The past two weeks they have had a smoking hot girl working there. Like she is sooo cute, I would do anything...She's a tall brunette. If you go when shes working, its easily worth the price of admission. —ZacharyRyan
2012-07-12 19:07:13 I went here for the first time tonight. After seeing their spits of roasting shwarma, I could not help myself. I couldn't decide if I wanted beef or chicken, so they gave me half and half. It was just delicious. I have traveled to the middle east, and I definitely think that this is the best Mediterranean place in town! —NyssaSpector
2012-08-15 14:35:58 This place is definitely the best Mediterranean restaurant in town. They are not pricey, considering the quality and quantity received. If you haven't yet, check this place out. It is addicting. —CarlosM
2013-03-17 16:26:19 THE BEST FALAFEL! —EdwardY
2013-10-14 15:44:15 Just heard that this place is closing as of October 31st 2013. —LokiAbbi
There's a sign posted near the cash register that says that the place is changing ownership Nov 15. There's a sign posted in the window that is an application for a transfer of the liquor license. The applicant is "Kitchen Counter LLC" and the business name is "Wind of Change" —gcoville