TODAY’S LUNCH: CHICKEN SHAWARMA ON PITA FROM UNIVERSITY PITA

storefront

I’ve walked by University Pita several times.  It’s on 12th Street just west of University Place, almost next door to Num Pang, one of my favorite places.  University Pita caters a lot to NYU students, who receive significant discounts.  We put University Pita in our Honorary Street Food category, as it is basically a storefront with no seating.  It is also glatt kosher, if that matters to you.

The Yelp reviews rave about their falafel, but after seeing a large, juicy spit of chicken roasting, I opted for the chicken shawarma sandwich.  They also have a salad bar from which you select the items to go in your order.

salad bar

Before the chicken was even put into the pita, my sandwich included hummus, onions, pickles, red cabbage, hot sauce and a few french fries (at his suggestion).  There was also a tomato and cucumber mix, which I declined, and a few other options.  He then sliced some chicken off the spit and put it into the sandwich, along with tahini sauce.

lunch

This sandwich was quite a mouthful.  The first tastes were roast chicken, tahini and hot sauce.  The chicken was real chicken, not processed chicken like some chicken gyro places – and the hot sauce was definitely hot.  Very spicy.  Later bites had chicken, pickles, onions and french fries, and it was all good – and still quite spicy.

Today’s Lunch was an 8.5 out of 10.  The sandwich was very tasty, but at $9.50 for a chicken shawarma sandwich, even a stuffed one, it loses a couple of points for value.  I think he sensed my surprise at the $9.50 because he then went over to the deep fryer and threw 2 falafel balls into the bag, which got back half a point.  IMHO, the falafel was good, but not amazing – and their falafel sandwich was $5, which was a better value.

If you can get the student discount, University Pita is an excellent choice.  For everyone else, you have to make the value judgment yourself.  The food is fresh and good, but pricey.

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