New Canton restaurant features Yemeni cuisine, first-class ambiance
There’s much more to an exquisite dining experience than simply delicious food, Ismael Aljahmi emphasizes.
“My belief has always been, the eye eats before the mouth,” said Aljahmi, the owner of Canton’s recently-opened Sheeba restaurant, located at 8465 N. Lilley Road. “The first thing people do when they walk into a restaurant is look around, see how it is decorated, check out the atmosphere and ask themselves, ‘Is it clean?’
“If everything measures up, they feel comfortable and can sit down and enjoy their meal. Personally, you could serve me gold, but if the place isn’t clean, I’m not going to trust you.”
Judging by its early brisk business and positive online reviews, Sheeba has earned its customers’ trust.
Authentic Yemeni cuisine featured
The Canton Sheeba is the fourth opened in Wayne County by the Aljahmi brothers, who learned the business from their father who opened his first eatery in Brooklyn, New York in 1972.
“From the quality of food, to the hospitality, atmosphere and level of cleanliness — I take everything personally,” Aljahmi said. “When someone walks into our restaurant, they’re treated like guests are treated at our homes, not as a client. If you take care of people — give them the whole package — they appreciate it.”
While its menu is populated by Mediterranean-style dishes, Aljahmi prides himself on the authentic Yemeni food his restaurant offers, namely its Fahsah (shredded lamb and mashed potatoes served bubbling hot in a clay bowl with fresh clay oven bread), Seltah (fresh root vegetables combined with whipped fenugreek) and Mushakal (vegetable stew filled with healthy starches, root veggies, zucchini, celery okra and a rich savory broth).
“We pride ourselves in the way we prepare our food,” Aljahmi said. “We don’t just throw salt and pepper on it. We add special seasonings and we put a lot of love into it.
“A lot of people come in and like to stick with food they already know. If we can’t convince them to try our authentic food, we’ll give them a free try. When we do this, most people end up leaving their shish-kabob on the side and eating our authentic Yemeni food.”
Class A atmosphere
Sheeba’s atmosphere is first class — with elegant decorations to match. The spacious interior is well-lit with a comfortable feel and ambiance.
“The feedback we’ve received from our customers has been amazing,” Aljahmi said. “This location (just southwest of the intersection of Joy and Lilley roads) is perfect because it’s convenient for residents of Canton and just a five-minute drive for Plymouth residents. As a matter of fact, we’re getting a lot of customers from Plymouth.”
Sheeba is averaging 4.8 (out of five stars) on 170 Google reviews.
To view Sheeba’s menu, click here.
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