George Abou-Daoud, owner of Hollywood's Rosewood Tavern, The Bowery, Tamarind Deli, Township, Mercantile, and Delancey, is the proud new papa to Urban Garden, a fast-casual counter service concept unique to his empire of booze-friendly sit-downs. Newly open to Fairfax, Urban Garden is a little like the Mediterranean cousin to Bibigo or California Monster Salads, offering a base dish with several options to serve as toppings or accompaniments.
One side of the menu allows you to pick from salads like freshly made fatoush, tabouli, kale, and quinoa, or dips from a hummus bar like babaganoush, lebneh with zaatar, and tahini, as well as pita and rice bowls. The next step includes options like rotisserie lemon-herb chicken, beef kefta, lamb shawarma, fried cauliflower, falafel, or stuffed grape leaves to go on top of or inside of the dish. All customizable plates fall between $6.50 to $12.00, depending on size.
In addition, Urban Garden sells its own rotisserie lemon-herb chicken in $8 halves and $12 wholes with pita, choice of sauce or feta, with sun-dried tomato and aleppo pepper. Two soup options, a lentil vegetable and carrot ginger, are suitable for vegans, while dessert includes baklava, and pita chips with zaatar or cinnamon and sugar. Drink options offer iced green tea and lemonade made in house with rosewater.
Dishes are made daily, with a menu promising locally sourced ingredients and natural meats, with no "pressed or blended" proteins in the rotisserie. As ambitious Abou-Daoud is behind the solid concept, we wouldn't be too surprised to see more Urban Gardens on the way if this original location takes off.
Urban Garden, 446 N. Fairfax Ave. 323-951-0990.