As many of you know, the Saz, a failed experiment in Pangaean cuisine that proved the food world was not ready for the reunification of continents, recently left its location at 558 State St. Just a couple of weeks after its closing, the Saz's mixture of Mexican, Greek and Turkish food has been replaced with a new restaurant called Maza in its old location. At first glance, it appears Maza and the Saz have quite a few things in common. Maza retained much of the décor from the old restaurant. The seating still consists of two rows of small, round tables covered with plastic tablecloths, making Maza a less-than-ideal place for big groups. And like the Saz, Maza does not feature exceptional service. My friends and I were seated against a wall at a round table with five chairs arranged in a semicircle. When we asked our waitress if we could pull the table out a little, she allowed us to, but the cramped arrangement still forced one of our friends to sit underneath the large leaf of one of Maza's houseplants. Just like dining at the Saz, it was awkward. However, the similarities between Maza and the Saz ended once the food came out. Unlike the Saz, Maza has chosen to set its culinary sights on just one small part of the world — Afghanistan. From the moment diners sit down, Maza welcomes them to a unique dining experience with warm pita bread and balsamic vinegar and olive oil at every table. The menu consists of a wide variety of vegetarian, meat and seafood entrees ranging from $8 to $13, all of which come with the diner's choice of a hearty soup of chickpeas and noodles topped with a dollop of tangy yogurt or a forgettable salad of romaine lettuce and raw carrots. Maza also offers many refreshing appetizers for around $4. In spite of the sticky seating situation, Maza's service redeemed itself by delivering the appetizers quickly. The two appetizers our party sampled were both quite good. The Maza sampler was a trio of hummus, fried vegetables and a fried potato and leek dumpling that brought the term "Mediterranean quesadilla" to mind. Another tasty appetizer was the burani badenjan, an eggplant dish served in a tomato-infused yogurt sauce that was at once robust and refreshing. Even after the appetizers had set the bar quite high, the entrées did not disappoint. The sabzi chalow, a dish of spinach and potatoes served over aromatic basmati rice, had an earthy, lightly spiced flavor. The murgh korma, a dish of tender, marinated chicken served on a kebab with grilled green peppers, was simple yet satisfying. Our party's favorite dish, however, was the more complex kabuli murgh, a triumphant combination of olive oil, chicken, almonds, raisins and rice. After experiencing the large variety of flavors that this small restaurant serving the cuisine of a small part of the world had to offer, my friends and I left the restaurant happy and full. The test of a good restaurant is whether it can deliver good food in a timely fashion. Awkward seating arrangements and plastic tablecloths aside, Maza passed the taste test with flying colors. The service help, although inexperienced, was kind and attentive and brought great food to the table. The restaurant has a few things to learn, but what it lacks in service savvy, it more than makes up for with great flavor.