It's hard to refute 500+ reviews with a 4.5 star average rating, but I just don't see what people are raving about. my meal was distinctly mediocre.|
The parking is tough, the space is cramped and when busy it's hard to get to the counter to place your order. But my real objection is the food. I ordered the chicken shawarma and a side of hummus to go. The shawarma was made on a small pita bread, which works for gyros - where the meat is cut in long strips - but not so well for cubes of chicken. It doesn't wrap around the whole way and makes an unholy mess. The pita wasn't split and it was thick, cakey and not fully baked, so I got a bigger hit of doughy bread than I did the chicken and its accompaniments. A proper shawarma is typically made on a larger, thinner pita or lavash bread. (Shawarma King in the U. District is a good example.) The chicken was flavorful, as were its sides, but the bad bread killed it.
Then there was the hummus. When they first made it, the hummus went into the container followed by olives and olive oil and then... hot sauce. Without asking! I said, "was that hot sauce?" Answer: "Yes." I said, "no." They said: "Oh! I wish you'd told me..." The guy at the counter said he had no problem taking it off but made a show of saying they'd "eat it" in other words incur the loss. Dude - anything that isn't kalamata olives, olive oil or sumac doesn't belong in the hummus without asking first. It shouldn't have been my problem. The hummus (sans hot sauce) itself was not to my taste - it was a thick mass of tahini (sesame paste) lacking in chickpea flavor.
It's possible that their gyros are the way to go, but they prominently advertise the shawarma and the chicken rotisserie sits right next to the gryo rotisserie. We have very little in the way of good Middle East food in this town, so I have a feeling that in the Land of the Blind, the one-eyed man is considered King.