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Photo by billwisserphoto.com

Chayhana Oasis

billwisserphoto.com
A mural depicting a desert beneath a floating pair of eyes is the only sign that beckons passersby into this Uzbek-style hideaway, accessible only from one side of NE 163rd Street. Chayhana Oasis offers fare not only from Uzbekistan but also the entire central Eurasian region. Translation: You can eat your way around several nations. To keep the proceedings simple and entertaining, the menu contains quirky descriptions of lesser-known dishes. Begin with the doma, tender stuffed Turkish-style grape leaves; continue with cheburek, described as a deep-fried crèpe that’s folded and stuffed with moist and flavorful minced lamb and onion; and finish with a kovurma lagman, a dish of fried house-made egg noodles flecked with chewy bits of beef and topped with an impossibly thin egg crèpe. For dessert, try gnezdo, fresh meringue topped with diced walnuts. And in standard European fashion, wash it all down with a shot of top-shelf vodka. Go ahead — there’s no shortage of fresh, chewy Uzbek-style bread to soak it up. New Normal: Diners can choose to eat on the open-air patio.

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