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Best Sharwma in the GTA

I am looking for a few good sharwma places in and around the city. What I am looking for is good without having to slop it with all the toppings (i.e. extra sauces/hot) since normally I am on the go and when I have one.

Nothing I have had so far compares to the ones I first tried when I was in Los Angeles at Zankou's chicken -- down there they do not use hot sauce. I am still looking for a westend, Mississauga location to buy Bastarmia. Now I get it on Lawrence in Scarbourough but am looking for something a tad closer or on the way home to the Hammer from work.


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  1. try Ameer Family Restaurant - 2034 Lawrence Ave E...it is just after the Tim Horton's
    at Warden and Lawrence....the sharwma is not MESSY like all the other ones out there .Enjoy......

    1. Johnny's Shawarma at Kennedy/Ellesmere (next to Dairy Queen) is great if you are looking for Scarb suggestions...

      1. Paramount Foods
        1290 Crestlawn Drive, Mississauga, ON L4W

        What is Bastarmia?

        1 Reply
        1. re: Scary Bill

          Basterma is a heavily spiced/pressed beef normally made from the tenderloin. Very tender and cured so edible without heating. Some say it is similar to pastrami but pastrami is more wet. I am addicted to a good Bastarma -- especially the Armenian version.

        2. Zankou's is high standard to compare, as of yet I've found nothing in Toronto as good.

          I've been looking for a great place that serves it the way the Lebonese do in London, Tomato, Pickle, Chicken and Toum. Deliciously simple.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JamesJT

            I tried the one from Ameer yesterday and they did it like you wanted James, and there was ample chicken in it.

          2. Me Va Me at Steeles and Yonge have great Shawarma, Falafel etc.. with all the appropriate fixings

            1 Reply
            1. re: Curlygrrl

              I like my shawarma sandwiches with lettuce & garlic sauce only

              They have no lettuce :(

              No plain grated lettuce at least

            2. I second Me Va Me on Steeles, just West of Yonge on the North side... Add the fried eggplant and baba ganoush to everything! I love everything at that place, and the line-ups speak for their success.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Moimoi

                Their food is great, but the staff is incredibly unfriendly, so I stay away.

                1. re: magic

                  That's why I go to their take out location.....there maybe a line up ...but your in and out...

                  1. re: Curlygrrl

                    Oh I'm talking about the take-out location. Terrible. So rude.

                    I've heard the main restaurant location is even worse. Which disturbs me. Their food is top quality though, too bad.

              2. For me it's Shawarma Empire at 1823 Lawrence E just east of Pharmacy. I've tried many of the others on Lawrence, but SE excels at several things:
                -They're 100% consistent. My shawarma tastes the same each and every time I order it. No good days/bad days issues like the others.
                - They're clean. I would eat off of their floor. Okay, maybe not, but you get my point.
                - The couple who run the place are very pleasant to deal with whether you're a shawarma expert or a first-timer.