Olympic Pita - opening in Manhattan
While walking on Coney Island Avenue recently I saw a sign in the window that Olympic Pita is opening on 38th Street (I think between 5th and 6th) in Manhattan. It almost makes me wish that I worked in the city...
It is good.Had dinner there last night. The portions are huge, the foos is tasty, and the decore is nice.
Previously had a Shwarma of lunch (my first trek there), and was very pleased. The laffa was not to thick, and absorb what little grease there was. The meat was tasty, not to greasy, and with little fat. Made it real style, with chumas and chips (fries) in it for no extra charge. A free salad bar comes with it, so loaded up on the cabbages, and the pickles and peppers for a nice treat on the side. They offer little containers of thani and a yellow spicey sauce to take. Very pleased so far, and by far my favorite middle eastern place in the city.
I recently took out from Olympic Pita after having also eaten dinner there recently and although I am not big on writing reviews, I think this place merits it.
First, I had the baby chicken with hummus on laffa. It was truly excellent, very large, and came with complementary side salads. The laffa was particularly noteworthy and among the best I have had. The chicken was grilled fresh upon ordering. If I have any gripe it would be that the hummus could use a little more mmmff. The decor is very nice for such an inexpensive -- and really any -- restaurant. I was particularly impressed with the bar. I see an opening here for them to be one of the first Kosher restaurants to have an extensive beer selection but right now their selection is rather meager. Nonetheless, they should be commended for including this at all and it makes the place a viable inexpensive date option. I have long been a fan of Nargila East but Olympic Pita manages to be better than them for considerably less money.
Olympic Pita fills a void in midtown eating: quality, inexpensive food with full, sit-down service and takeout. I recognize that options like Cafe K attempt to fill this but I have found Cafe K and others to be lacking in both quality and decor. In fact, I would argue that Olympic Pita is the most important new Kosher restaurant in Manhattan since Circa opened (although Circa's recent temporary closing for rumored health violations does make me think twice about going there). They should be the model for Kosher restaurants in Brooklyn who seek to open in Manhattan, not other less successful attempts like the Essex down by Wall Street. Let's hope this is the start of something and that people support this excellent new entry into the market.
Speaking of Brooklyn Israeli places expanding into Manhattan, Pita Off the Corner is scouting locations in the East Village. Nearly all the kosher places in that area closed down a few years ago because of the crazy rents, but with the economy what it is landlords are having to learn to lower their expectations, and it may be affordable again.