Truly Mediterranean is a small chain of restaurants featuring Middle Eastern cuisine. I'd read raves about it, so one evening (November 2004) when Lola and I found ourselves in Berkeley we decided to give the one there a try. We didn't really like it.
Truly Med's menu includes sandwiches such as kebabs, shawarma and falafel and more substantial dishes from across the Middle East. Everything is less than $9, making it truly affordable.
We started by sharing an order of Baba Ghannouj ($4.50) which came with pita bread. I liked the subtle, smokey flavor of the dip though Lola wasn't won over by it. Still, I'd order it again.
I had the Mansaf ($9) a Jordanian specialty consisting of a lamb shank cooked in a yogurt sauce, served with rice & topped with roasted pine nuts & almonds. I'd never had it before, but I didn't really like how the sauce complimented the lamb; it made it taste really "lamby" and not in a good way. The yellow rice was fine, though nothing special.
Lola had the Sabanekh (~$8), a combination of spinach and lamb sauteed with onions and garlic and served in a lemon sauce. She wasn't impressed and declared it just "OK." She wouldn't order it again.
Truly Med was a good place to hang out and talk while we waited for our movie. I might go back, but only to try the kebabs or shawarmas.
1984 Shattuck St.