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With its Marrakesh-via-Mecca décor, Zaytoons looks like just a prototypical cheap, BYOB Middle Eastern falafel-and-pitza joint. And it is, as far as looks go. But the excellent food tells another story. As the name implies, the pitzas are pizzas baked on pita-bread crust. They’re good, and function as a kind of tasty gimmick, but they’re not Zaytoon’s strongest feature. That distinction belongs to the standard, but totally spot-on, Middle Eastern salads, dips, sandwiches and platters of falafel, shawarma, and kabobs. Each is prepared quickly, but evident attention to edible detail, consistently well-spiced, fresh, and savory. Falafel is fried to supercrunchy delectability; stuffed grape leaves carry a preserved-lemon tang. Despite the classic menu, Zaytoons has a happy presentation quirk: Sandwiches arrive with the ingredients wrapped in the pita, rather than stuffed. The result? A bigger, heartier handful of goodness, and one that’s also easier to eat. No more overstuffed pitas tearing at the seams!
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