SPICING UP RED BANK, MEDITERRANEAN STYLE

Mohamed Elbery shows his son, Karim, how to chop parsley finely enough to make tabouli, a salad featuring onion and garlic. (Photos by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge)

By STACIE FANELLI and DANIELLE TEPPER

If you’ve never tried baba ghanoush, Mohamed Elbery will hook you up. If you don’t like it, don’t worry – there won’t be any hard feelings. He’ll just be pleased to have been able to offer you a bite of his culture.

Mediterranean food is an acquired taste, Elbery admits, but Café28, on White Street in Red Bank, has enough loyal regulars to keep him in business and able to afford to give out the occasional free sample. He said it’s the unequalled, exotic dishes that keep people coming back – and keep him fearless in the face of Red Bank’s reputation for quick turnarounds in business.

“You are now in my house. You are most welcome to try it,” he said.

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