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With its subtle hints of Middle Eastern flavor and its secular worldview, Taboonette won’t transport you to Tel Aviv. But like San Matteo Panuozzo, it’s striving to expand the notion of the New York sandwich, one pita pocket (or split pizza dough) at a time.


San Matteo Panuozzo
121 St. Marks Pl., nr. Ave. A; 212-979-8000
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Prices: $7 to $9; cash only.
Ideal Meal: Di Bartolomei or Alla Pancetta panuozzo, pistachio gelato.
Note: There are only five stools, but the sandwiches are slightly better eaten on the spot.
Scratchpad: Two stars for sandwiches that are nearly as good as they are at the uptown branch, and the friendly, transporting atmosphere.

Taboonette
30 E. 13th St., nr. University Pl.; 212-510-7881
Hours: Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Prices: $2.75 to $13.50.
Ideal Meal: Shakshuka, kruveet, or pulled-pork sandwich on pita.
Note: If the lentil soup is available, get it.
Scratchpad: One star for reinterpreting shakshuka as a portable sandwich; another for the good-looking, comfortable space.


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