Sophi’s Mediterranean Cafe’ & Market

If you like food from exotic places like Greece, Italy, France, Spain and Morocco then you will love Sophi’s Mediterranean Café’ and Market in Biloxi. Sophien and Leila Bouhjar opened the restaurant and colorful market on the Fourth of July this year. They are serving wonderful food and the market is stocked with specialty grocery items that you can’t find anywhere else on the Coast.
Sophi came to the United States in 1992 from Paris, France and Leila from Tunisia in 2004. They have filled their new business with all things Mediterranean that are virtually impossible to get in this coastal-tropical environment, Biloxians call home. All of the items are kosher. They come directly from the farms and wholesalers in countries like the ones mentioned above, as well as Turkey, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Spain and Algeria. You will find fine cheeses from Syria, wild nutmeg, specialty teas and coffees, Egyptian juices, pickled lemons and fresh-dried dates. The shelves are full of all kinds of delicious things. Leila said that she has a hard time keeping the rare, red lentils in stock because they are so popular.
The restaurant is on the opposite side of the building from the market. It is casual and comfortable. Stuffed grape leaves to Baba Gannuch and Tzatziki are all daily fare at the petite family-run business. Shawarma chicken and Farfel salads pair nicely with the Lebanese Kebeh and Fish ala Françoise. Now, I know that many of you may not be familiar with these dishes, or know what the flavors will bring to your pallet, but let me assure you that Chef Sophi is more than willing to help you discover the tastes of the Mediterranean a little at a time.
Located at 2729 Pass Rd. just West of Eisenhower Drive in Biloxi, the restaurant and market open each Monday through Saturday at 11 a.m. and noon on Sunday. You can call the owners to book parties or to order take out dishes. They offer a 10% military discount and can be reached at 228-388-7222.
The owner and chef takes great pride in making each dish to order and will answer any questions you may have. He has a facebook page where you can ask about all the dishes on the menu and find out about the daily specials. Leila will be happy to tell you how to use the various ingredients found in the market to make a wonderful array of meals for your family. The Turkish Delight candy and jars of Giardiniera Mix make wonderful gifts for the holidays whether you celebrate Ramadan or Christmas! The specialty meats include Kosher Dry Lamb Sausage for a fraction of the cost that it would take to have it shipped from over the internet.
Are you hungry yet? Let me suggest some things from the menu that I found really appetizing. Who knew that this home grown, traditional Southern girl would actually like Farfel, Beef Gyros, Turkish Kefta Kebab, Chicken Shawarma and Tzatziki sauce. They are all so delicious!
There are also Hookah flavors on the menu as well as Arabian and Turkish coffees. The Lebanese Baklava is heavenly and the Lady Fingers round out a meal nicely. The restaurant has a full bar and a lunch menu that offers a sandwich, fries and a drink for only $7.99.
Make your next meal deliciously different by visiting Sophi’s Mediterranean Café’ and Market in Biloxi. Enjoy!

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