First Look: Ariana Afghan Cuisine, Sandy Springs

The look: The aura is casual fine dining, with white tablecloths, black napkins and fresh flowers on the tables, and contemporary white, geometrically shaped dinnerware. A few tapestries and carpets hang on the walls for atmosphere.

The scene: One recent evening, diners at several tables expressed curiosity about Afghan cooking, while uniformed servers did their best to answer questions about the menu, pointing out familiar selections, such as hummus and kabobs.

The menu: The multipage numbered offerings range over appetizers, entrees, seafood specials and vegetable dishes. Kabobs, better known as street food in many places, are elevated to sit-down dinner status with the addition of rice, housemade Afghan bread, chutney and vegetable sides. Look for the likes of charbroiled skewers of bone-in chicken ($11.99), veal tenderloin ($18.95) and lamb chops ($23.95).

The drinks: Beverages include traditional Afghan drinks such as a dough yogurt shake ($2.95), hot tea and soft drinks. The concise beer and wine list features Blue Moon Belgian White ($5) and Bogle Cabernet ($8 glass/$39 bottle).

The extras: Desserts include Afghan-style rice pudding with pistachios ($4.99). Kids meals include a chicken kabob with fries ($6.95). Every day, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., there are lunch specials, such as sandwich wraps ($7.95-$9.95), plus discounted kabobs and entrees.

Dining out

First Look: Ariana Afghan Cuisine, Sandy Springs

11 a.m.-10 p.m. Mondays-Sundays

Appetizers, $4.25-$5.95; kabobs, $11.99-$26.95; entrees and specials, $7.75-$31.50; kids meals, $5.95-$6.95.

5785 Roswell Road, Atlanta, 678-732-0746,

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