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Shawarma

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Name a Falafel Joint for $3,000

Yesterday, another shawarma-and-falafel joint with a similar menu took the place of Chickpea on Third Avenue. Since the words “shawarma” and “falafel” are, after all, painted down the side of the building, the restaurant isn’t in a hurry to name itself, and, like Chickpea before it, it’s holding a contest that will award $3,000 ($500 more than Chickpea offered) to the person who comes up with something snappy. As you might guess from their URL, www.name-our-glatt-kosher.com, the place is under Orthodox Union supervision; it closes two hours before Shabbat on Friday and opens an hour after it ends on Saturday (lucky for anyone getting tanked on cheap drinks at Continental next door — it’s open until 4 a.m. on Thursday, 5 a.m. on Saturday, and 1 a.m. all other days). Anyone have signage suggestions other than the painfully obvious — a rabbi saying, “Not-So-Awful Falafels”? Name Our Glatt Kosher, 23 Third Ave., nr. St. Marks Pl. (212-254-9500) Related: Falafel Innovations Power Chickpea’s Expansion Plans

Hill Country Delivers in Flatiron; Music Coffeehouse Comes to Chelsea

Astoria: “Restaurant/cafe/bar/club type establishment” Apollon has closed. [Joey in Astoria] Chelsea: Next Tuesday music production school DubSpot is opening a cafe on 14th Street at 9th Avenue that will feature La Colombe coffee. [Blog Chelsea] Flatiron: Hill Country’s now delivering from 21st to 31st Street between 8th avenue and Park, but if you order enough ’cue they’ll lug it anywhere. [Grub Street] Forest Hills: Shwarma destination On the Grill now sprinkles fried, lemony, Moroccan style jalapeños on its platters. [Gothamist] East Village: Il Buco is closed for yearly renovations, but will reopen September 5th. [Grub Street] Harlem: Canines and their humans can unite this Saturday for the first St. Nick’s Dog Park Coffee Bark of September. [Uptown Flavor]

Falafel Innovations Power Chickpea’s Expansion Plans

Chickpea’s decision to give up frying their falafel filled us with sadness. Even if, as Eater suggested in their item on the subject, it was as a prelude to expansion, was this really the direction we wanted to see falafel go? The only good thing about these “nosh puppies,” for our money, was their oil-fried goodness. But Chickpea is expanding, executive chef Alex Schindler tells us, with locations planned for the Upper West Side, the meatpacking district, and Times Square, in the next year alone, and with the expansion must come plans to diversify and modernize the Chickpea trinity of falafel, hummus, and shawarma.

Spin the Shawarma Wheel

Edible Brooklyn has a piece on a subject very dear to our hearts: Those mysterious wheels of meat called shawarma that you find in falafel and gyro joints around town. The article covers the best of Brooklyn; our picks for outside of Brooklyn follow.