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My Vote for Best Falafel In Midtown, whats yours?

My vote for best falafel in midtown has got to be the halal cart of the south-east corner of 52nd and 7th. It has become my mainstay for lunch. $4 for a falafel sandwhich can't be beat.

Also, they are very vegetarian friendly, making fresh falafel in the fryer when you order, not warming anything up on the flat top with the meat and using separate tongs for it all.

Anyone have any nominations? I am bit obsessed with falafel and would love to try some others.

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  1. Azuri Cafe.

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    Azuri Cafe
    465 W 51st St, New York, NY 10019

    6 Replies
    1. re: gutsofsteel

      Agree with Azuri, the balance of fillings and the patties are both excellent. I've never found the guy to be surly. I believe they are now $6.00 or so, but I'd say you are getting a better product than from the cart (no anti cart bias, just really like Azuri).

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      Azuri Cafe
      465 W 51st St, New York, NY 10019

      1. re: Alan Henderson

        I third Azuri. The proprietor has mellowed in recent years.

        1. re: D...DF

          Over the last two years the Azuri proprietor has been rude to me, looked at me as if I were an idiot, and hung up on me. What was he like before he mellowed?

          I've found the felafel there acceptable-to-decent, but no better. Gazala has been turning out better felafel in the last year or so.

          1. re: FoodDabbler

            I went to Gazala again recently. The falafel was solid but a bit salty, but one thing about that place is that their hummus is fantastic - nutty, just delicious, and probably the best I've had anywhere, so far. I also love their labane. But I must warn anyone who wants to try their tasty osh al-saraya dessert that it's now very small and costs $7.60. Gazala used to be a better value.

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            Gazala Place
            709 9th Ave, New York, NY 10019

            1. re: Pan

              They have different varieties of hummus, too -- chickpea, fava, etc. Slightly smoky, I seem to recall. I agree that it's very good. Their very thin flat bread, clearly the middle-eastern inspiration for Indian rumali roti (handkerchief bread), is also excellent.

            2. re: FoodDabbler

              You have described what I considered his pre-mellowing demeanor. Perhaps you just have to catch him on the right day. I haven't tried Gazala recently but I'll give it a whirl.

      2. Gazala Place can be quite good too. 9th and 49th. Not always perfectly consistent, but when they're on they make a great sandwich.

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        Gazala Place
        709 9th Ave, New York, NY 10019

        1. I'm also a little obsessed with falafel. I really miss the Taim truck, which used to park in midtown on certain days, but the police have kicked them out of midtown entirely, along with all the other trucks, due to some BS court ruling.

          Kwik Meal #1 (a cart) has a really amazing falafel sandwich at the southwest corner of 45th and 6th. The sandwich is a bit small though, but it's excellent. I just read somewhere that it's brushed with butter, though. Isn't that cheating?! :) I don't know, I just feel like falafel sandwiches shouldn't have butter. But that won't stop me from going back again and again anyway! The bread (pita? thin laffa? something great anyway) seems to be homemade.

          Of course, there's also Maoz at 40th & 7th as well as a new location on 8th Ave. near 43rd. But for me, that's more about the falafel salad bar (especially the pickled red eggplant) than the falafel itself. Their falafel is good but not as good as Kwik Meal's or Taim's.

          I tried Gazala once. It was OK. I'd put their falafel at about the same level as Maoz's.

          Any other suggestions that aren't too far west? I generally have to stick to places east of 7th Ave.

          I've been meaning to try Azuri for years, but it's way too far out of bounds for me for lunch. I keep meaning to get over there for dinner, but I often work late. I don't want to get there close to closing time and incur the wrath of the proprietor. There are some scary stories in an older thread about what happens if you go there as late as, say, 8:30.

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          Gazala Place
          709 9th Ave, New York, NY 10019

          Kwik Meal
          45th St and 6th Ave, New York, NY 10036

          Maoz
          200 W 40th St, New York, NY 10018

          Taim Mobile
          , New York, NY 10001

          Maoz
          683 8th Ave, New York, NY 10036

          1. CRISP. I love the African sandwich with includes spicy peanut sauce. My fiance loves the Parisien sandwich with includes goat cheese. They also have a food truck and a newly opened location in Greeley Square.

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            Crisp
            110 W 40th St, New York, NY 10018

            Crisp on Wheels
            , New York, NY 10001

            Crisp
            1271 Broadway, New York, NY 10001

            1. I second Crisp!

              I never really ever enjoyed falafel before having it at the Crisp on Wheels truck. Crispy outside, soft inside, flavorful and healthy. Definitely a winner.