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Jan 11, 2008 06:46 AM

what is the best falafel in Boston?

I just watched the PBS documentary "Sandwiches you will like" and heard of Sepal in Watertown, but I guess it's closed now? (or does it still exist somewhere?)

I have a friend who has NEVER had a falafel sandwich in his life, and want to take him out for the best one possible to introduce him to it.

what're your suggestions?

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  1. Yes, the Watertown one has been closed for awhile now. I think there's still a Sepal at MIT. The falafel at the one in Watertown was indeed one of my favorites.

    My personal favorites these days for falafel are probably from Rami's in Brookline and The Reef Cafe in Allston. They both do falafel sandwiches as well as regular plates of falafel.

    BTW, the falafel sandwiches at Whole Foods are surprisingly good, too.

    3 Replies
    1. re: hiddenboston

      What's the difference between a falafel plate and a falafel sandwich? Have you tried the shawarma in a pita at Rami's?

      1. re: buffet king

        Falafel plates can be a number of different things depending on where you go, but at Rami's, the falafel plate is falafel and houmous (with the falafel not being in pita bread). In addition to the falafel plate with houmos,Rami's also has a houmos falafel in pita bread, a houmos Salad in pita bread, and a falafel houmos salad plate, so there are a few options there.

        Yes, I've tried the turkey shawarma there. It's pretty amazing stuff!

      2. re: hiddenboston

        Sepal is open at the Lobdell Student Center at MIT. They are open for lunch and dinner every day but Saturday. I was there a few weeks ago and the food is still delicious. Can't beat the prices either. Not really a place to go on a date, but if you work in the area or pass by on your way home, Sepal is the best food bargain around.

      3. Sepal reportedly has a location on the MIT campus...hopefully that one is still open, as I miss the Watertown one as well.

        Rami's in Coolidge Corner Brookline has good falafel (different style than Sepal's, but very good). I remember reading that he imported his falafel - making machine from Israel..

        3 Replies
        1. re: Ralphie_in_Boston

          There is a Sepal location in the upstairs dining hall in the student center at MIT, which is at 84 Massachusetts Ave in Cambridge. I don't think they're open on weekends.

          1. re: monicall

            yeah and if you're a woman, the likelihood is about 99.9% that at least one or perhaps all of the men working there will hit on you, including the owner. I worked on campus for many years and liked that they had healthy dining options but I finally had to stop going because it was so bad (and I'm a thick skinned kind of girl, especially where chow is concerned!)

            Plus, I like the falafel off the 77 mass ave truck way better (and very nice people) - it's not high end, but it's great comfort food.

            and FWIW I think Moody's in central square is disgusting. I was drunk on quite a number of brown liquor drinks (shout out to Misty at Green Street Grill!) and even drunk I threw the sandwich out - ICK!

            1. re: MB fka MB

              i've thrown out moody's sandwiches drunk before. horribly bland.

        2. Long live the Falafel King (on Winter Street, near Park St. station).

          9 Replies
          1. re: Bob Dobalina

            FYI, Felafel King has an outpost in Quincy where his brother has a Middle Eastern Market (with a small kitchen for felafel and other items) on Hancock st. in Wolloston--Delicious felafel!!

            1. re: SeaSide Tomato

              Is that the little Halal store across from Dunkin Donuts?

              1. re: teresacooks

                That's it, just south of the Hancock/Beale intersection.

                1. re: teresacooks

                  o.k., I went today. They are super nice in there. He gave me a falafel to eat dipped in hummus while I waited for my sandwich. It was probably the best falafel I've had. Here's the weird thing. . . the sandwich was a little bland and a little dry. . . maybe you have to ask for all the usual things on it? I had a falafel sandwich at Saabs in Norwood (next to staples on Dean st. and route 1) the other day, and the falafel itself was good (but not great like here) but the sandwich was great, lots of tomatoes, turnip, sauce, fresh herbs (mint, basil I don't even know what else -also, it was $4). Maybe the spectacular falafel is better in a salad at the Wollaston place. . .

              2. re: Bob Dobalina

                Are you sure FK is closed? There's a review at Yelp as recently as this Tuesday:


                1. re: Gio

                  LOL...I didn't mean it THAT way. He's alive and well.

                  1. re: Bob Dobalina

                    I agree that Felafel King on Winter Street and the excellent Quincy source on Hancock Street (free or almost free parking!) are great places.

                    1. re: Bob Dobalina

                      Good.... I think I'm brain dead. LOL

                  2. re: Bob Dobalina

                    Had FK yesterday and it was delicious. Def need to get there more often

                  3. Sultan's Kitchen has an awesome falafel. They offer the sandwhich w/tahini, or you can get a combo plate with a couple sides as well.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: chowciao

                      Sultan's does some great food indeed, but I have to give the nod to FK as they're cheaper and just have that "ugh what is this place, wow the food's really good" ambiance. Plus, it's the first place I tried Falafel where I actually liked it.

                    2. I can't comment definitively on the Best in Boston as I really don't eat them that much. However I can say that Cafe Jaffa on Gloucester Street is excellent.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Gabatta

                        Cafe Jaffa ain't bad, I live just around the corner from there, and their falafel is better than Steves, but I'd still vote for FK. However, Jaffa has a bar, and tables, and wait staff, and FK is a take-out counter.