Page 20 - Discover South Mississippi - Spring, 2023
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     Gulf Crab Cakes.
1223 Government St. Ocean Springs
Facebook @PhoeniciaGourmet
Mon & Tues, Closed; Wed-Fri, 7 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Sat, 7 a.m.-9:30 p.m.
Sun, 7 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
story and photos by Kimberly C. Rasmussen
Phoenicia Gourmet is a local restaurant that needs little introduction. Owner and chef, Issam “Sam” Sabagh is the man behind the curtain making Phoenicia an Ocean Springs staple since 1996. From humble beginnings of busing tables in college to proprietor of one of the Coast’s most successful eateries, Sabagh knows his way around the kitchen. His fusion
of local favorites, such as fried fish
and shrimp together with Middle Eastern spices from his home country of Lebanon, has earned Phoenicia a top spot among local diners.
I love everything about Phoenicia’s menu. There’s an extensive list of shareable appetizers, smaller bites, house specialties, multiple course entrees, and even a little Mexican flair. The best part is that everything is equally satisfying.
I’m an appetizer kind of gal and love
having lots of options. You can’t start a meal at Phoenicia without a warm serving of pita bread served alongside their signature hummus and za’atar dip. Stuffed Kibbeh is a traditional Mediterranean dish that mixes marjoram seasoned ground beef and cracked wheat, which is hollowed out and stuffed with onions and pine nuts before it’s deep fried golden brown. The Sambousek, or meat pies, are another delicious option showcasing ground beef deep fried in a house made pastry. While both of these are go-to favorites, the surprise of the appetizers was the Mediterranean Shrimp. Jumbo Gulf shrimp are sauteed in Cointreau and topped with a sweet kiwi, mango, and strawberry relish. I absolutely loved this dish that showcases a hint of citrus mixed with Phoenicia’s signature spices.
By far, one of the most popular dishes

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