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Alf Laylah, Lebanese with Belly Dancing in Tysons and Chantilly

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Stopped by Alf Layla for a quick mid-afternoon lunch. Actually, I was heading to Shamshiry and it caught my eye. It has been open all of four months.

According to its web site, there is another location in Chantilly, so this note is likely to be lost in the oblivion of the "multiple locations" section of the dining guide. In this case, I don't feel bad about it.

Alf Layla seems more like a Middle Eastern party, with hookah bar and live entertainment on weekends, including belly dancers. If that's your cup of tea, enjoy.

On to the food -- no kibbee nayeh! That's a thumbs-down for me.

I tried the chicken shish taouk, which was nice enough but not spectacular. The addition of pickled turnips added a nice crunch but the sauce was so-so. The accompanying french fries were of the frozen variety. Nothing special here.

I took home the mezze sampler, which at $35 turns out to be the biggest rip-off in Tysons Corner. Some hummus with meat topping, and no bread, a few grape leaves, cooked kibbee and filafel, all in all about $6 worth of food and 50 cents worth of packaging. And the food was awful, although it probably wasn't meant to sit in styrofoam for an hour.

Next time I'll head straight for Shamshiry and avoid any distractions along the way.

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