Some chefs are loud personalities; others let their cooking speak for itself. Michael Rafidi is in the latter camp, and we can’t stop thinking about the delectable stories he tells through his cooking at this wood-fired Levantine (Eastern Mediterranean) restaurant. Rafidi, raised in Maryland, learned about food from his Palestinian family—and went on to lead California chef Michael Mina’s kitchens for years. At his own Navy Yard restaurant, he seamlessly melds ancient coal-fired cookery with Arabic ingredients (there’s a glossary at each table) and fine-dining mastery. Silky hummus is divine, topped with ember-cooked mushrooms, black garlic, and jammy yolk. Tour through mezze such as “sweet ’n sumac” carrots with smoked-peanut harissa or barbecue octopus de-skewered tableside, then move on to one of the family-style centerpieces, such as smoky lamb-kofta kebabs. The restaurant isn’t stuffy—we’ll have another za’atartini dotted with harissa oil and a labneh soft-serve for dessert. The adjoining cafe, Yellow, recently closed, but a new location in Georgetown will make any day sunnier with “urfa-thing” bagels, baklava lattes, and wood-fired pita sandwiches (at a fraction of Albi’s prices). Expensive.