Have a D'Vine Mediterranean experience in Fullerton, California

Walid Alarja was born to cook. As a child, he apprenticed as a cook. He started his career helping with preparation of daily meals and special events at his family's restaurants and esteemed hotel. Educated at the French Culinary Institute in Alexandria, Egypt and with over 30 years of experience in the culinary arts, Walid is a Master Chef who specializes in the preparation of authentic Mediterranean cuisine.

The Fullerton location, which opened on August 1, 2015, is hidden among the college town bars and eateries in the downtown area. The exterior is made from the historic red brick like many other buildings in Downtown Fullerton. The entrance is a tell-tale sign that this place is something different with the shapes and designs reminiscent of North Africa.

The interior is beautiful from the long marble countertop bar to the woven wooden chairs and stools.

The dining room is softly lit with lighting fixtures you might find in Egypt or Morocco.

Your dining experience starts with bread service of crispy pita bread chips paired with extra virgin olive oil and herbs for dipping.

Hummus with Shawarma ($9) is hummus topped with chicken or beef shawarma, pine nuts, and olive oil. The hummus is smooth, creamy, and not too lemony. The chicken shawarma is fabulous! It is one of the best chicken shawarmas I have ever had. It is super flavorful and pairs perfectly with the hummus. The pine nuts add a nutty flavor and crunchy texture. I am definitely going to order this as an entrée next time. Rating: 5/5

Cheese Fatayer ($7) is lightly fried dough stuffed with Mediterranean cheeses. These remind me of cheese turnovers or spanakopita. The dough is more like a hand pie crust. The cheese inside is gooey and hot (be careful on your first bite). Very simple yet delicious! Rating: 4.9/5

Jallab ($4) is a Mediterranean drink made from a fruit syrup which contains dates, grape molasses, and rose water. The floral rose aroma hits your olfactory senses first – sweet roses. Then rose water, dates, and grape molasses sweeten the palate. The color is a beauty to behold. Rating: 4.5/5

Lamb Chop ($15) is marinated and grilled lamb chops served with your choice of one cold mezza, rice, and pita bread. The hubby chose tabbouleh as his cold mezza. The lamb is juicy, tender, and succulent. It is grilled to perfection, well-seasoned, and flavorful. Rice was also flavorful and a good starch choice. The tabbouleh has a good flavor but a little heavy on the lemon. Otherwise, this is an excellent dish. Rating: 4.8/5

Kefta ($12) is grilled ground beef and lamb mixed with finely chopped onions, parsley, and house spices on a skewer and served with your choice of one cold mezza, rice, and pita bread. Kefta is one of my favorite dishes in Mediterranean cuisine. D’Vine’s version did not disappoint. I chose labneh as my cold mezza. The blend of meats, onions, herbs, and spices are perfect with a chargrilled color on the outside and medium rare in the middle. The labneh adds a tangy creamy flavor to the lamb like a yogurt sauce. It is also great mixed into the rice. The garlic sauce is amazing and goes with everything. Rating: 5/5

Baklava ($4) is a pastry made with light, flaky layers of filo dough lined with crushed walnuts and drizzled with pistachios and syrup. I have an immense appreciation for this dessert after making it this past summer. It is a very time-consuming preparation but well worth it. This has to be one of the best baklavas I have ever had. It is light, flaky, and crispy and tastes of molasses and brown sugar. The pistachios add the perfect nuttiness and richness. Rating: 5/5

Laylee Lubnan ($6) is an aromatic dessert made with semolina pudding, topped with whipped cream, fresh ground pistachios and sugar syrup. The best way for me to describe it is that it reminds me of haupia, which is a Hawaiian coconut pudding. It has the same texture, but instead of coconut, it has a sweet floral flavor from the rose water on the front end of the palate and custardy taste on the back of the palate. It is a very unique dessert and a must-try! Rating: 4.7/5

If you on the lookout for authentic Mediterranean food, look no further. D’Vine has everything you are craving!

Atmosphere: 5 out of 5 stars Décor: 5 out of 5 stars Service: 5 out of 5 stars Food: 5 out of 5 stars

For more information:
D’Vine: A Mediterranean Experience
132 W. Commonwealth Ave.
Fullerton, CA 92832
Hours: Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. until they run out of pita bread
Parking: Free parking lot behind restaurant or use the parking structure