Tradition Tastes So Good at Sidon Lebanese Grille & Bakery

. November 30, 2018.

The experience of Sidon Lebanese Grille & Bakery begins even before you enter the restaurant. Located in a small shopping center on Bancroft, just west of Ottawa Hills, when you exit your car, you’re met by the scents of Middle Eastern spices and fresh-baked bread.

The sleek yet friendly restaurant seems like familiar territory. Toledo is blessed with a number of places which serve good Middle Eastern food so most of us know our way around hummus, stuffed grape leaves and chicken shawarma. But Toledoans who try the Lebanese offerings at Sidon can testify that this is something special.

Owner Bahaa Hariri, who came to our table to talk, says that he and his crew take a great deal of pride in serving up truly authentic Lebanese fare.

Bahaa Hariri, Sidon owner, offers  authentically prepared  Lebanese food.

Bahaa Hariri, Sidon owner, offers authentically prepared Lebanese food.

“Few other restaurants offer Lebanese food that’s authentic in flavor and in preparation technique,” he adds, “our charcoal-grilled kebabs and our stone-oven pita are our signature items.”

Ah, that pita. Deservedly a customer favorite, this pillowy treat arrives at your table hot and fresh from that stone oven, accompanied by a dish of seasoned olive oil. Losing yourself in this simple perfection, might make you forget that you still have an entrée coming!ml-dec-wish-list-sidon-3

Daily specials not to be missed

Entrees—both hot and cold—are terrific. Kebabs of chicken, beef, lamb or lamb sausage. Pita sandwiches. Salads and appetizers, dips and more—even a strong selection of traditional Lebanese breakfast items.

However, be sure to check the daily specials board as you walk in. This is where you can be surprised with something extra-special, even if you’re a regular. “These are dishes that aren’t typically served in restaurants,” Bahaa explains. “It’s truly home cooking.”

My lunch partner and I took his suggestion. I dove into the chicken kapsa: two well-seasoned leg-and-thigh pieces, oven-roasted and served over rice mixed with peppers, carrots and almonds. The kapsa seasoning is fragrant rather than spicy, redolent of black pepper, saffron, ginger and, perhaps, a touch of cayenne.

Chicken kapsa.

Chicken kapsa.

My partner opted for the vegetable stew with lamb. The vegetables were many and varied: cauliflower, squash, potato, eggplant and carrots, which, along with the tender chunks of lamb, were bathed in a tomato sauce and served with rice pilaf. A choice of salad or soup accompanied both specials.

All this made for two well-filled diners, with plenty to take home in earth-friendly heavy paper takeout containers Sidon provides. We were both too full for dessert, but the rice pudding looked very tempting.

If you’re inspired by your meal at Sidon, you can re-create parts of it at home by visiting the Middle East Market next door. Run by Bahaa’s father, Mahmoud, you’ll find groceries, fresh produce, a meat case and deli delights, with much of the selection meeting halal standards.

Sidon | 4625 W Bancroft St
419-558-3900 |

Open Monday-Saturday 9 am-9 pm, Sunday 9 am-8 pm.


Black Lives Matter: Resources for being informed about Black Lives Matter

The murder of George Floyd, on May 25, 2020, has shaken the world. We can no longer deny the devastating impact of racism and for many, a spark has been light. That spark pushes us to learn, become informed and challenge ourselves to do whatever we can to wipe out racism and make our country

Outdoor activities to enjoy in Toledo

It’s crucial for all of us to be mindful of safety as the world slowly begins to reopen, but we also ache to get out of the house. Luckily, the Toledo area offers a variety of enjoyable outdoor activities so you can combat cabin fever and COVID-19 at the same time. BIRD WATCHING Though the

Laura Zitzelberger: Decades of helping animals

Laura Zitzelberger recently stepped back from her role at Nature’s Nursery a bit. She’s been involved with Whitehouse, Ohio’s wildlife rehabilitation center since co-founding it in 1989 with her friend Deb Cooper. She’s worked as the Nursery’s Director of Operations since 2006. But now, Zitzelberger works remotely as she has a lung condition so must

Wood County Historical Center honored for Poor Farm exhibit

The Wood County Historical Center and Museum was recognized for an exhibit, For Comfort and Convenience: Public Charity in Ohio By Way of the Poor Farm. Named Best Exhibition Under $500,000 in the Award of Achievement categories, For Comfort and Convenience, a focal point of the Center’s 2019 season, was an examination of facilities in