Thornhill Middle Eastern
You can only choose one of the following: MeVaMe, Sababa or Sofra Grill. Which one and why?
390 Steeles W, Thornhill, ON L4J6X6, CA
8707 Dufferin St, Vaughan, ON L4J 0A6, CA
Being partial to Middle Eastern cuisine, I've been to all three many times, and find no substantial difference - all have pretty much the same menu, prices and solid quality. Me Va Me has slightly better ambiance than Sababa, and Sofra slighter better ambiance than Me Va Me, but none will win awards in that department. All are little more than decent utilitarian dispensers of Middle Eastern nosh. If I'm in the mood to make a meal of Middle Eastern salads, starters and hot and cold appetizers, then I lean to Sababa's longer, more interesting selection of such items. For main dishes, I prefer Me Va Me, though Sofra will do in a pinch if I'm up that way (on Dufferin south of Rutherford Rd.) Most Russian/Israeli/Middle Eastern restos in the GTA are modestly priced and similar in all respects. The weak ones are weeded out pretty quickly by a knowledgeable clientele especially sensitive to price creep. Me Va Me, which is opening a satellite locale shortly at Bathurst St. and Rutherford Rd., seems especially well run nowadays after some lax times in the past. For drinkers, be prepared for a dismal wine and beer list at all three. But most customers are there for the food, not the drink, so it's no big deal for them. If you insist, though, house wines are usually okay, but wines by the bottle are often badly stored and overpriced. The first one of these three to offer BYOW (with low or no corkage charge) will, I suspect, see an uptick in business.
Hands down: Hanna's Shawarna, 9301 Bathurst, Richmond Hill, 905-918-0126 - Great choice, very fresh, take out available, very reasonable.
My pick would definitely be Sababa! Their pitas are freshly baked on site, which is a huge advantage over the other places. Also, I prefer their flavoring/spicing. Their hot sauce, in particular, is a standout. Me Va Me, to my palate, tastes a bit too sweet (especially the baba ganoush), which I don't care for when it comes to savory items. Also, for what it's worth, the wait at Me Va Me is annoying. I mean, the food is good, but it's not gonna rock your world. I prefer more prompt service.
I was at Sofra today. I used to pick up from there often, but haven't been in awhile. Went today for a late lunch (which was nice because it was quiet, rather than the usual full house). Everything was better than I remember. The falafel were the best I have had in long time. The israeli salad, simple, but perfectly lemony and garlicky and fresh and the hot mushrooms with hummus reminded me how hummus should taste. So good.