Showing posts with label chicken shawarma laffa. Show all posts
Showing posts with label chicken shawarma laffa. Show all posts

Babel (Toronto) for brunch

 


Cutting into the fish cake benny ($19) a sigh of relief is emitted when there wasn’t a gush of yolk spilling onto the plate. Undercooked eggs is something I detest, it’s as if the egg just barfed all over the plate. Luckily, Babel’s poached eggs were perfect where the yolk slowly pours out and is thick enough to spread like soft butter.


 


The fact that the beautifully cooked egg is on top of a fish cake makes the dish even more coveted. Akin to a crab cake, the decadent bottom pulls apart easily and is seasoned perfectly with a touch of tartare sauce that gives it a briny bite and blends nicely with the hollandaise. If the fish cakes were cooked a touch longer to allow a crust to form, that bit of crunch against the other soft and silky ingredients would make the dish complete. It’s a main that works well for sharing as the combination is rather rich, so they smartly pair the bennys with a simple green salad.


Normally, I wouldn’t think to have a chicken shawarma wrap ($19) for brunch, but when you’re at Mediterranean restaurant it doesn’t seem so strange. Babel’s laffa wrap is uber thin and well toasted so that there are crispy air pockets. Stuffed with slivers of tender chicken, curried chickpeas, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles and tahini sauce, the ingredients meld together nicely to create a tasty bite.


 


Hot and crispy shoestring fries finish off the plate and are the perfect vessels for dipping into the creamy garlicky toum. We should have chicken shawarma at brunch all the time.


 


Oddly, their brunch menu only lists a handful of cocktails as beverages, devoid of the traditional caffeine and juice options. Luckily, we pulled up all the drink options from their website so that I could enjoy a fragrant cup of Sloane tea latte ($5.50), given not everyone wants a stiff drink at 11 in the morning.


 


I am just happy we discovered a great brunch spot that is close to home, takes reservations, and has a lovely varied menu. Babka French toast and vegetarian shakshuka, we shall become better acquainted in the future.



Overall mark - 8.5 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 305 York Mills Road


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____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!


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CLOSED: Sofra Mediterranean Cuisine (Toronto)

Location: Toronto, Canada
Address: 5025 Yonge Street
Type of Meal: Dinner


Sofra Mediterranean Cuisine opened this year and looks rather unassuming from the outside. The “restaurant” is mostly a bright take-out area with a few tables scattered inside and out front. At first, I dismissed it as another fast food place, akin to Shawarma Max or Pita Pit. But, after walking by a few times and finding it busy at all hours, we were intrigued and stopped by for a late dinner.


As a warning, although you can be served while dining-in, it seems much quicker to just go inside and order at the cash register. It took less than five minutes to order, pay and pick our toppings and then brought over the finished plates to our table.

After seeing the size of the chicken shawarma laffa ($7.45; almost a foot long), my husband and I decided to share. In the end, we each still had a wrap the size of a regular Z-teca burrito. This was my first experience having laffa bread and found it had the chewiness of freshly baked naan but the thickness of a soft pita. The consistency is slightly denser, perhaps due to it being made from chickpea rather than wheat flour.



With tons of topping to choose from, we decided to let the lady put whatever she thought would be good (which ended up being everything). Unfortunately, I can’t remember all the ingredients but lettuce, tomato, cucumber, red cabbage, babaganoush, tahini, hummus, toum (garlic sauce) and skhug (hot sauce) were just a few of the things inside. The chicken was tender and there was decent portion of it. And while there were so many sauces, none of them were overpowering and worked well to complement each other. My husband and I both agreed it was one of the better shawarma wraps we’ve ever had.



Seeing a pile of baklava ($3.50) sitting on display, we couldn’t help but have one for dessert. Although it was soaked in a buttery syrup, we found it was at least not too sweet. Of course, it contained some customary chopped nuts, but Sofra’s also seemed to incorporate a fig paste as well.



With other locations across the GTA, Sofra is not exactly the one-off Mom & Pop shop we originally thought. Based on the pictures on their website, the North York site seems to be the most casual as the other locations appear to be more restaurant–like. But, even though it was small, it felt cozy, especially with the welcoming attitude of all the staff. 


Overall mark - 7 out of 10



Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog

____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!