The Budget: $3.50-$7
The Specs: Falafel Sandwich and Spinach Pie
The Mood: Wait-in-line-hole-in-the-wall-take-to-go-eat-in-park
The Place: 119 MacDougal Street
Getting food to-go and eating it in the park while reading a book and watching people can be ranked as one of my favorite things to do. Yesterday was just that sort of day, except it wasn’t just that sort of day. This is one of the most important Bite on a Budget posts out there. When you can fill yourself up for $3.50, that is something. When you can do it while simultaneously eating the best falafel in New York City, you are truly living the dream at Mamoun’s, my man.
I am a semi-credible source to claim this as the best falafel in New York City–I went to Israel just to eat their falafel (okay, there were other reasons, such as eating hummus). All that being said, maybe you should listen. Or maybe you shouldn’t. You should.
This is the place, all of it. Well, and the line outside. And the two benches out in the front. There are about four barstools here against the right wall. This is primarily a to-go joint, which is fine considering it is two blocks away from Washington Square Park, which is the ideal spot to partake of such an amazing food, because you can listen to soft jazz as you eat, and what more could you ask for?
Here is a picture of my falafel and spinach pie on the ground next to my sandaled foot, in case you couldn’t tell. This is the part where I begin going on and on about the food. Mamoun’s was the first Middle Eastern restaurant to appear in New York City, and it’s been open since 1971. They are dedicated to providing an authentic Middle Eastern experience, hence importing the spices they use, and choosing fresh ingredients.
Falafel Sandwich ($3.50)
I cannot believe I am not lying when I say this is $3.50. Honestly, it looks a little small, but it is really filling. I could definitely have just eaten this for my lunch. This is, by far, the most outstanding falafel I have encountered in this city. I’m going to be craving this for the rest of my life. You can get two of these boys with pita on the side for $6.
I’m looking forward to trying the shawarma and kebab next time.
Spinach Pie ($2.50)
You can choose an assortment of sides with your falafel for anywhere from $2-$3, including grape leaves and lentil soup. This spinach pie probably needs to be on your list though. Sautéed spinach and onions in filo dough is important.
In short, this restaurant deserves a spot of fame on this blog, so get yourself over there. You might run into me.
Put a fork in it.