Restaurants & Bars

Boston Area Falafel

Horizontal Falafel-Tasting in Brookline


Restaurants & Bars Boston Area Falafel

Horizontal Falafel-Tasting in Brookline

galleygirl | | May 31, 2002 07:08 PM

Some people remember Paris for the 3-star restuarants; my mother remembers it for the gigantic falafels and gyro sandwiches that she and my father bought in the Morroccan joints on the Left Bank..(Yeah, I was the one that tipped her off...) Since I am house-keeping impaired, everytime my mother wants a chow-adventure, she offers to help me clean my kitchen...Well, I have no shame...Since the question of the best falafel in town had come up recently, I offered to make the rounds of the falafel epicenter, Brookline, in return for sanitizing the non-exhuast-hooded kitchen...

We bagan at, what I thought was going to be the winner, King Tut, across form the T-stop, in Brookline Village(10-5, M-F)...Mom blew our cover, explaining why we were splitting only ONE sandwich...Okay, I thought he'd rise to the occasion..Well, I've had way better from KT. In fact, I feel very guilty about judging them on an off day, because I usually enjoy the salt and cripiness combo here...They are small, which is okay, wrapped in one-half a sheet of pita, but he forgot our tomatoes and tahini..I mean, how could we compare? Wonderful hot sauce, and spicey balls'o'fava bean, but Mom wasn't dreaming of Paris, or Israel...

Our next stop was the much-heralded Rami's, in Coolidge Corner(Harvard St, Coolidge Corner T-stop, closed Fri.nite and Sat.).. The infamous Rami himself waited on us, and he was as UNPLEASANT as the KT owner had been pleasant....But the sandwich was an authentic Israeli delight...A whole fresh pita loaf, slit and schmeared with hummos, jampacked with cucumber and tomato and cabbage and pickles, a dab of their greens-heavy hot sauce(ask for a LOT!!!) and a generous helping of tender fava-bean balls..Drizzled with tahini, though fairly mild tahini....Mom was much happier...

We strolled by Trader Joe's, so we could work up an appetite for the next sandwich...We did non-perishable shopping, (Mom discovers Kashi-Crunch!!), and the soon-to-be rock-star who rides the cash-register at TJ's serenades us...Mom is charmed, by the incipient rock-star, and the food at Trader Joe's...

We stroll up the street to Schwarma King, out last stop(Beacon St, Coolidge Corner T-stop)...We order the falafel with hummos...Different than any of them...Comparable to Rami's, but with more spice overall...The pita was whole, yet not slit and stuffed, but grilled(with no oil, just crunch) and rolled around the filling...Mom was leaning toward Rami's, but she admitted that the fava bean balls were hotter(temp) and spicier here..The liberal drizzling of zestier-tahini and a healthier handful of chopped parsley increased the aromatic quotient here.. (If you end up here, make SURE you get the Schwarma King Salad, a bowlful of chopped cucumber, tomato, onion and parsley, marinated in olive oil and lemon juice...Juicey and refreshing! We also got the BEST dessert out of their pastry case, a bourma, sort of a slice of sugar-syrup and herb infused strudel stuffed with whole pistachios.......)

Mom wanted a ultimate Frankenstein-falafel, the filling from Schwarma King, stuffed into the pita pocket from Rami's....So this is your choice; you can go for the mild, clean, freshness of the Rami's sandwich, with it's heaps of raw vegetables, or the spicier wrap at Schwarma King, with the grilled pita, with its more aromatic memory...We couldn't decide, so it's a winner either way...

As we walked home, and I grilled her on various aspects of every mouthful, Mom said, "I feel just like a chowhound!"

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