DC: Amsterdam Falafelshop

Amsterdam Falafelshop
Originally uploaded by kerner.

If I had to pick my favorite restaurants from the trip to DC it would be hard to split the top two. For quick, easy, and late night (although we ate lunch there) food the winner would be the Amsterdam Falafelshop.

If you’ve never had falafel you have to try it – perhaps not something to make at home, but mmm. Falafel is a deep fried ball of spiced, ground garbanzo beans. It is most often served in a pita as a sandwich (as at the Amsterdam Falafelshop) then topped in a variety of ways. 

The menu is amazingly simple. You can get two sizes of falafel in white or wheat pita, two sizes of fries, brownies, and assorted beverages. The menu is really only 3 items long: falafel, fries, brownies. The complexity comes with the topping bar. This is also where the goodness comes into play.

The topping bar consists of nearly twenty different sauces, salads, and pickles. It’s possible to build your falafel in such a way that no two bites taste the same but every bite is delicious. This was my goal. I did fairly well for the first two thirds, but by the time I got to the end of eating the toppings had blended together giving me a very flavorful finish. Lest your fries feel left out they include traditional Dutch mayo, ketchup, and malt vinegar for them as well.