.Hummus Mediterranean Kitchen Opens New Location

HMK expands into the Stanford Shopping Center

Silicon Valley malls are experiencing a renaissance due, in large part, to a shift in their owners’ strategy. Westfield Valley Fair, the Pruneyard and the Stanford Shopping Center are drawing the attention of consumers who like to eat well as much as they like to indulge in retail therapy. 

Wandering through the aisles of Eataly at Westfield is worth at least one full day of exploration. LUNA and Orchard City Kitchen are just two of several dining options peppering the Pruneyard. And, with the arrival of a more sophisticated, revamped iteration of Hummus Mediterranean Kitchen (HMK), the Stanford Shopping Center continues to expand upon its bountiful supply of culinary delights. 

In 2013, Hummus Mediterranean Kitchen’s first fast-casual iteration opened in San Mateo. Co-founded by Turkish immigrants Onur Alkanoglu and Yasar Bulutoglu, the Palo Alto location is its fourth spot. Since founding HMK, the original owners are now part of a restaurant group that is slowly expanding the concept across the Bay Area. One of the group’s partners, Amir Hosseini, told me why they chose to open HMK in the Stanford Shopping Center.  

“You have the hospital and university systems there,” Hosseini explained. “You have a lot of people traveling in and out of the area pretty frequently. I felt that this could be a flagship store for us to do something special here.” 

The square footage of the original HMK also had a much smaller footprint. The Palo Alto location is spacious, with a large dining room that can accommodate families and larger parties of diners.

Hosseini describes the space as “fine casual, where you don’t have to get super dressed up to come to any of our restaurants.” His hope for the restaurant is to hone in on serving consistently good plates of food. Hummus, of course, is at the top of the menu.

The “classic hummus” can be ordered as an appetizer but it’s also part of a sampler plate ($21.95). It’s a smooth rendition made with that reliable mixture of chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice and garlic. But there are three other kinds of hummus that can be ordered as starters–olive and feta, chipotle or beet. 

The uplifting companion to most items on HMK’s menu is the pita bread. It’s served warm from the oven, puffed up and lightly spiced. “In Palo Alto, we’re baking bread almost hourly,” Hosseini said. “The pita bread, that’s an in house recipe that’s being made. As an operator, I feel it’s the small touches that go a very long way.” 

Mucver ($13.95), or zucchini fritters, is another delicious item that’s part of HMK’s menu evolution. “At the Stanford location, we felt that we could experiment and introduce more authentic Turkish items,” he said. “Mucver is a super tasty, great snack. We thought we’d introduce it into this local market and see what the feedback looks like.” 

On the weekends, the Palo Alto location of HMK  is introducing a Turkish breakfast course that comes with cheeses, dips, jams, spanokopita, menemen, shakshuka and a pot of Turkish tea. “There are items on our menu that would be traditional when you go out for breakfast in Turkey,” Hosseini said. “That’s something that we think we’re offering very nicely here.”    

Hummus Mediterranean Kitchen

Sun to Thurs 11am–9pm & Fri to Sat 11am–10pm

715 Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto




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