This week was mostly uneventful on the food front, until dinner today, when I tasted one of the most satisfying meals...ever.
The restaurant: Taim.
How I discovered it: Once again, The food network taught me a valuable lesson. I look to the food network for recipe inspiration, entertainment, and general food faq's. Whenever I have access to cable television, I choose food network over almost any other show. Except perhaps top chef.
The main point is, I saw Taim on the Bobby Flay show Throwdown. The theme of the show was falafel, so Bobby went to the place that is deemed to have the best in America. I actually have not tried a very wide variety of falafel places, but in my experience, this was the best, by a mile.
Taim is located in Greenwich Village, in the heart of a foodie paradise. It's on 222 Waverly Pl, and probably cannot hold more than 7 or 8 people at a time. There is only counter space for about five to eat. I stood up at the counter next to Emily and ate.
The menu is cheap, with a really good sized falafel pita at about $5. There are three flavors of falafel to choose from- harissa (tunisian, mildly spicy), red (roasted red pepper), and green (parsley, cilantro, mint- the traditional). I had green, in a homemade whole wheat pita, which was so fluffy and perfectly chewy. It was definitely the best pita bread I've ever had. It came stuffed with about 6 falafel balls that were lightly crunchy and literally melted in my mouth. The flavor was perfect- not overly garlicky or loaded with tahini, but nicely seasoned and herb-y. It was a bright, round, and full taste...if that makes sense. It's hard to describe, other than just deliciously balanced. With the falafel itself was hummus, Israeli salad (tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley and lemon-mint dressing), green cabbage and tahini sauce. The salad was great too, not big watery chunks of vegetables, but nicely cubed and coated in the tangy dressing. The crunch added a cool contrast to the warm and soft falafel and fluffy pita. The tahini wasn't dripping out of the pita, but it wasn't dry by any means. Once again, this sandwich couldn't have had better proportions of any one element.
The "falafel and smoothie bar" also has, well, smoothies, made with fresh fruits. There's a small selection of other items, such as sabich sandwiches and platters, eggplant salad, moroccan carrot salad, marinated red beets, tobouli, and a soup du jour. The other most enticing item was the side of homemade french fries that came with a saffron aioli. It was a big portion of golden frites for $4. If you're not a falafel person, or want to stay away from fried stuff, you can still get the pita sandwich, but stuffed with hummus and two of the salads and tahini sauce instead.
I highly recommend Taim. And, if you're gonna go, call me. I want to go back ASAP.