You don't have to leave NYC to travel to the Middle East. Just hop on the train and head to Sahadi's in Brooklyn Heights.
As soon as you step inside you're bombarded with fish, meats and cheeses. (It's much bigger then it appears) There's so much, its hard to know what to look at first. As you go further in, you find yourself in front of their beautiful olive bar. They carry pretty much any olive you could want along with a great bread and cheese selection to pair it with. Go back towards the right and your greeted with rows of olive oils.
The yellow label is especially good and the price is even better. Look to your left and you'll see a deli area filled with different hummus, salads, spinach pies, zattar bread, baklava etc. (I told you it was bigger then it appeared) The people behind the counter are really sweet so don't be afraid to ask questions.
Lastly, as you check out keep your eyes open for last minute deals. I scored a beautiful wedge of Brie for pennies compared to what it would be in Manhattan.
Needless to say, Sahadi's is going to be a staple in my culinary shopping. Just the inspiration alone makes it worth it. Even if you aren't in the NYC area, they have an online store so you can still get your middle eastern goodies for a little bit more delivered right to you. Sahadi's is at 187 Atlantic Ave in Brooklyn, NY (718) 624-4550 http://sahadis.com.