Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Brothers Gyro: Gyro near the Galleria

Restaurant: Brother's Gyro
Address: 5000 Westheimer Road, Houston, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: neither
Date of Visit: 10/28/17



Background:
أسلام عليكم / Hello guys! This will be a review of a 2 month old spot that is the closest halal restaurant to the Galleria: Brothers Gyro. As the name suggests, the main emphasis of this restaurant is the beloved Gyro. I first saw it on Yelp when searching for more places to try. At first, I thought it was just a regular Mediterranean place that serves regular Mediterranean food, but there was one particular one that caught my eye. It was a loaded baked potato with gyro. Baked potatoes are a thing here in the US. It's widely enjoyed as either a side or a full entree. Halal ones are very rare to find, so for the most part many stick to just vegetarian or one with cheese. I used to really enjoy the one at McAlister's at the UH campus, but the time to have an entree size halal loaded baked potato came. TGs has one with beef bacon, but it's only as a side. So this is essentially the first place to offer a halal loaded baked potato in the city as an entree. I got to go after work. Without the Houston traffic, it is only a 15 minute drive from my job. It was hard getting into the place because according to Google Maps,it was on one side of the retail area. Turns out that that side was under construction. Eventually, it was nestled one the other side.



Let The Experience Begin!
The restaurant is small, kinda like what Verts used to be like. It was also dark inside. But there was hardly any rush inside, though some tables were taken. After confirming everything was halal, I was ready to go.



Let's Eat!
Getting the food was like getting it at Chipotle: get a main dish, a protein, and then sauces and toppings. Along with the gyro meat, I got every cheese, butter, sour cream, green onions and tzatziki sauce. After it got toasted, I paid $8.10 (tax included) and was ready to eat it.



Menu: http://www.brothersgyro.com/

The menu is small, and everything is under $10. You can get meat in various forms such as a wrap with either tortilla or pita, burger, plate, or even salad. Everything here is halal.

The Gyro Baked Potato


The Verdict:
The four year wait was worth it. Food was really fresh. The gyro meat was really flavorful. The potato was also good as well.
I have no complaints for the service. The people were nice.



Conclusion:
If you want to eat something that has gyro meat, or want a halal loaded baked potato, then this is a place you should try. This is literally a walking distance from the Galleria (just cross Westheimer and you are there!)



Grading:
Food: 8/10
Service: 8/10
Total: 16/20 = 80% (B)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Brother's Gyro
5000 Westheimer Road, Houston, Texas
Phone: (832) 991-8988
Website: http://www.brothersgyro.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brothersgyro/
Timings: Mon-Sun: 10 AM - 8 PM
Caters: No

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or email me!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Pinkerton's BBQ: The First Sit-Down Halal BBQ Spot in Texas

Restaurant: Pinkerton's BBQ
Address: 1504 Airline Drive, Houston, TX
Buffet or a-la-carte: neither
Date of visit: 10/22/2017



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Welcome to my latest review. This one is a special one. I am pleased to announce that we finally have a sit down BBQ spot in Houston after a 4 year wait. And this one was big. One closed down (now they reopened and do catering only), and the others do on specific days or catering events. This is a place where you can bring your family and friends, sit down, and eat BBQ. The place is in question is called Pinkerton's BBQ. Believe it or not, this place is regarded to have some of the best BBQ in the Houston area. This place was even considered to be in the top 100 restaurants in Houston by Houston Chronicle food critic Alison cook. Unreal stuff.
So how did all of this start? I got a notification from zabihah.com that Pinkerton's uses halal brisket from Creekstone about a few months ago. I messaged them, and they said that they were working on it. Since then, I was in contact with the owner. I wanted to go in the summer, but a roadblock hit. Prices at Creekstone went up significantly, and the owner wanted to wait until they came down to get the beef. Fast forward to last week, and my best friend shows me a message from one of his friends about Pinkerton's. It now said that you needed at least 24 hours notice. I message him and he said it would be best to come to the restaurant for separately smoked brisket on the weekends, and also early as they tend to run out! Amazing how they're willing to accommodate Muslim customers yet two other BBQ spots in the states said it was not possible to do! Hopefully, the wait would be worth it.



Let The Experience Begin!
Pinkerton's in located in the middle of the Heights on Airline Drive. It's located more to I-45 than it is to 610. I went twice so that I would get the idea of what to expect. So one day I went myself and the next day I brought a group of friends. On Saturday, it was packed! I had to wait for about 5 minutes for parking, but inside the line was thankfully not that long. I met the owner, who said that I was good regarding the smoked brisket! Afterwards, I went in line.
In the second day, I guided my friends in what to do (which is literally just get in line LOL)



Let's Eat!
The way it works is that you get in line and you get your sides and condiments first. They have onions, pickles, and jalapenos. You then have the option of getting sides. I got a potato salad. Then comes the main attraction: the meats. On the first day, I went for a half pound of some nice, fatty brisket. That's where I learned that you have to mention to the cutters that you want halal. They then bring out a freshly smoked brisket onto a clean cutting board with a clean knife. On the second day, I got the brisket as well, but then I learned that ALL their beef is halal (and has been verified many times). Wow. Just wow. So I got myself a chopped beef sandwich. How about that for a comeback after 4 years. There's no waiting time. They listen to what you want, and they give it to you. Definitely something needed since the line can be REALLY long.



Menu: http://www.pinkertonsbarbecue.com/menu/
Prices are literally like EVERY OTHER POPULAR TEXAS BBQ SPOT. I capitalized because the lack of understanding of the fact that BBQ prices are pretty high is one of the major reasons why halal Texas BBQ has failed in Houston. I honestly hope that this one will reverse that. I have provided the links of two popular BBQ spots (Franklin's in Austin and Killen's in Pearland), where you can click on the menu and see what the prices are (note that both use Creekstone, but DO NOT smoke separately from the pork).

Franklin's --> https://franklinbbq.com/menu

Killen's --> https://www.killensbarbecue.com/#menu


The food at Pinkerton's is literally like the ones are the above places. Just pick your sides and meats, and you're good to go! Just remember that only the beef is halal, and you must mention halal when getting your meats. Plenty of people have called them up and confirmed with them that the beef is halal, and everyone in my group asked them about halal and then got the meat.

Brisket cut in half. Pink doesn't mean blood. 

One pound of brisket with potato salad for two
Chopped Beef





The Verdict:
The four year wait was well worth it. The meat was so juicy and tasty. There was so much flavor in the moist brisket. The BBQ sauce was exceptional also. This was on both trips by the way. The majority of the folks with me really liked it (the folks who didn't like it were not beef fans), The food was washed down with a nice bottle of Mexican Coke.
Service was great. The people, including the owner, were incredibly nice.



Conclusion:
One of the top spots for Texas BBQ in Houston AND uses halal meat? You got yourself a customer! I'll definitely be back and I'll definitely bring my friends and family here. You guys should give this place a try if you want a taste of what Texas BBQ is!



Grading:
Food: 9/10
Service: 9/10
Total: 18/20 = 90% (A)
Pricing: $$$ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information
Pinkerton's BBQ
1504 Airline Drive, Houston, Texas
Phone: (713) 802-2000
Website: http://www.pinkertonsbarbecue.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Pinkertonsbarbecue/
Instagram: pinkertonsbbq
Timings: Mon-Tue: closed; Wed-Thu & Sun: 11 AM - 9 PM; Fri-Sat: 11 AM - 10 PM. I however suggest you guys go early on weekends since they tend to sell out!
Caters: yes

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or send me an email!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Silk Road Grill: Halal Uzbek Food in Southeast Texas

Restaurant: Silk Road Grill
Address: 9211 West Road, Houston, TX
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 10/10/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! I've been out for a while. School started again, and this time I work part time at the place where I interned last year. So time is really tough nowadays. I just go to places I've visited before to eat the food, and for the most part they hit the spot. Deciding where to go next was tough because I had limited time and it is at least an hour if I wanted to head to the Energy Corridor or Westheimer from Prairie View. So I decided to hit up this place after a few minutes of contemplation. I chose this place because it mainly had a new cuisine, though they serve traditional Mediterranean fare as well, and because it was only 10 minutes on my house and using one road to travel to it. Also, I wouldn't need to take any toll roads to get there, so it would be a lesser burden on me.
The new cuisine is the cuisine of Uzbekistan, a country in Central Asia. They have dishes that are common to other parts of Asia. Their bread is called non, similar to naan in the Subcontinent. They also have Samsa, which is similar to samosas and sambusak.


Let the Experience Begin!
Silk Road Grill is located at the intersection of Beltway 8 and West Road. It is a small area, but the inside looked nice. The menu was illuminated on screens behind the counter. The person however didn't even bother to say hello. Since this was a new cuisine I was trying, I already knew what I was going to order.



Let's Eat!
I ordered the traditional Uzbek plov. They have it available in two sizes: medium, and large. I ordered the medium. It turned out that it was the last one available for ordering at that time. I wasn't sure if it is because they make it in short supply due to people ordering the Mediterranean food more (honestly speaking, we should be more adventurous), or because they sell so much of it since it is the only place in the state to get authentic Uzbek food. Plov, or commonly pulao, is popular in many Central and South Asian countries. They vary based on what country you go to. For example, Pakistan has Yakhni pulao, which uses goat in flavorful rice. Afghanistan has Kabuli Pulao, where it is lamb shank with rice, raisins, and carrots. For plov in Uzbekistan, it is chunks of beef/lamb with rice, raisins, and chickpeas, and carrots. Here, they use lamb and it comes with Achick-Chuck salad (salad mainly consisting of onions, tomatoes, and cucumbers). I paid $11.90 (Tax included) for the dish. Wait time was 13 minutes. I just sat around and waited for the food to come.



Menu: they have a website, but I took pictures of it BECAUSE THEY COULDN'T BOTHER POSTING THE MENU PRICES ONLINE. For people like me who budget in order to write this blog and also not overspend, it's a frustrating thing to see. There were menu pics on Yelp, but I don't use them unless the prices there and the actual ones are the same. The only thing really worth noting is the fact that this place serves traditional Uzbek food. Otherwise, it just the basic Mediterranean fare.


Menu Part 1 (click to see)


Menu Part 2


Menu Part 3


The Plate

The Verdict:
My first experience with Uzbek food was a great one. The food was actually tasty. The lamb wasn't too dry, the rice had a lot of flavor, and the salad was very fresh. Though the plate was small, it was filling. Money well spent in my opinion.
Service however was really meh. The guy wasn't really that nice from start to finish. He seemed to have an attitude.



Conclusion:
While the food was good, I won't be returning until the service gets better. Such a shame that the food is good. One suggestion I would give is that you should consider doing the lunch specials with the Uzbek food as well, since this is also an Uzbek place and it would also give the customers more exposure to Uzbek cuisine at a lower price.



Grading:
Service: 5/10
Food: 8/10
Total: 13/20 = 65% (D)
Pricing: $$ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information: 
Silk Road Grill
9211 West Road, Houston, TX
Phone: (832) 912-4663
Website: http://www.silkroad-grill.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/silkroadgrill/
Email: silkroadgrilltx@gmail.com
Timings: Mon-Sat: 11 AM - 9 PM; Sun: closed
Caters: N/A

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or send me an email!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Spice Station: A Halal Desi Restaurant in South Central Texas

Restaurant: Spice Station Indian Cuisine
Address: 1030 E Lott Street, Kingsville, Texas 78363
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 8/30/17

Background:
Salam/hey guys! By the grace of Allah SWT, I am able to write this review. Thankfully the weather conditions managed to improve in time for the drive to happen (Kingsville is located near Corpus Christi), and so did the roads for the most part. So I was with my dad, his friend, my friend from India, and his friend. From Cypress, we were to drive to Kingsville to drop my friend and his friend off at Texas A&M Kingsville since they were graduate school students, and they had class later in the day (Kingsville was sparred from Harvey while Corpus wasn't, and they're only 45 minutes away!). It was a pain to get there because parts of Grand Parkway was shut down, Much of Rosenberg shut down and we had to take a detour (to the person from Fort Bend EOC who gave me the directions, thank you so much), and places were either badly damaged or flooded (Wharton was underwater and Refugio was damaged heavily). The idea of Spice Station came because the students went to Kingsville and they enjoyed the food. My dad's friend knew the place when it started out in a gas station. A quick search on zabihah.com showed that there were two other places: Cafe 5, a place having both Indian and Mediterranean food), and a KFC (surprising for a really small town). Alhamdulilah for living in Texas, where you can find at least one halal restaurant in so many spots.


Let The Experience Begin!
Spice Station is a small restaurant located on Lott Street. We came in and we were greeted. The students knew the owner, so they just spoke for a bit before proceeding. There were two options: rice and two options for $7.57 and rice and three option for $10.81 (both tax included). Interestingly, the biryani was considered an option.


Let's Eat!
Since we were all hungry after having not so good donuts in Rosenberg, we all went for the rice and three options. What basically happens is that there are items that are in a buffet counter, and the restaurant people serve what you ask for. I got the spicy basmati rice with the biryani, chicken 65, and chicken kofta. To drink, I just got water.

Menu: https://www.beyondmenu.com/36827/kingsville/spice-station-indian-cuisine-kingsville-78363.aspx#group_1386932
Very affordable prices. This is your regular spot for Indian food. They have the usual stuff like chicken tikka masala and samosas, but they do have chat and pani puri.


The plate


The Verdict:
The food looked great and tasted great overall. The clear winners were the biryani and the chicken 65. The chicken 65 here easily tops the ones I had in Houston. The biryani was also very tasty as it had a lot of flavor. The kofta could have had a little more flavor and so can the basmati rice. This place was also filling, just like Biryani Pot. Overall, a good job by the restaurant on the food

Service was great as well. The owner was really friendly and took very good care of all the people that were dining, including us. He was also very friendly with all the customers, which is a rare thing in Indian/Pakistani places.  He really did make us and everyone else feel welcome inside the restaurant.

Conclusion:
This place is essentially the Biryani Pot of South Texas in terms of food, but with better service.  The best opportunity to check this out is if you are visiting someone at A&M Kingsville, or if you want some halal food on the way to South Padre Island. If you visit Corpus Christi, go at your own discretion since this place is 45 minutes away from there.

Grading:
Food: 8/10
Service: 10/10
Total: 18/20 = 90% (A)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Spice Station Indian Cuisine
1030 E Lott Street, Kingsville, Texas 78363
Phone: (361) 592-1376 or (979) 571-8232
Website: http://www.spicestationindian.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/spicestationindiancuisine/
Timings: Mon-Fri: 11 AM - 9:30 PM; Sat: 11 AM - 4:30 PM; Sun: Closed
Caters: Yes

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or email me!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed 

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Hurricane Harvey Relief

Salam/hey guys. I know this is not normal, but we here in Southeast Texas need your help. Last week, Hurricane Harvey battered all of Southeast Texas and it left major damage and catastrophic flooding all over Houston. There were areas that were hit by tornadoes, and areas where entire SUBDIVISIONS have been destroyed. Thankfully, there has been a huge rescue effort that has been taking place since Harvey left, and many places have opened up as shelters, unlike a well known church (Hint: it used to be the arena for the Rockets). But these rescue efforts still need your help! Below are some of the places that you can donate to to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey

JJ Watt: https://www.youcaring.com/victimsofhurricaneharvey-915053

ICNA: https://www.icnarelief.org/wp/index.php/hurricaneharvey

Galveston County Food Bank: https://33714.thankyou4caring.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=298

Houston Food Bank: https://secure3.convio.net/hfb/site/Donation2?df_id=9314&mfc_pref=T&9314.donation=form1

ISGH (Islamic Society of Greater Houston) https://isgh.org/harvey/

Remember, each dollar can make a difference. Please keep all of us here in your prayers and also share this page with your friends and family.

Peace and Blessings to all,

Zain Mohammed

Monday, August 21, 2017

Jade Ly Asian Bistro: Another Spot for Halal Chinese Food in Sugar Land

Restaurant: Jade Ly Asian Bistro
Address: 5022 Highway 90A, Sugar Land, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 8/15/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Today I will be writing about a trip that I have been anticipating all year. This place is called Jade Ly Bistro. For the past 5 years there had only been one halal Chinese restaurant in Sugar Land: China King. Overall, it has been decent, but it would be really nice to see some competition. Another halal Chinese option would mean people being able to choose which one to choose from. After Hunan Chef closed, there had been a shortage of halal conventional Chinese places since Uyghur Bistro is more focused on food from Northwest China. By conventional, I mean food such as Kung Pao Chicken, Mongolian Beef, or Sesame Chicken. The only other options were Jamillah Garden (which has downgraded since my review) and Halal Wok (which I didn't even like). That all changed when I was surfing through Facebook and then someone announced that Uyghur Bistro in Sugar Land switched their chicken and beef to halal. From that point on, I made it a point to visit them and try their food to see if they are better than China King or not. There was some doubt of their halal status since they still served pork, but then the owner on Facebook as well as some other people stated that they cook the halal stuff and the pork separately. I finally set up an event between me and my friends where we convene there after we all get off work and give the place a try.



Let The Experience Begin!
Jade Ly is located at the small strip mall at the intersection of Grand Parkway (SH 99) and 90 Alt. The inside was not the biggest, but it looked really nice. There were only a handful of tables inside the restaurant. The lighting and ambiance of the restaurant were definitely better than China King. We were welcomed in, and then were handed menus. The guys and I decided that we try each popular dish they have so that we can determine how they compare to China King. After deciding among ourselves what we'll have, it was time to order.


Let's Eat!
Since there were 4 people in total, we ordered 4 separate dishes. Like China King, Jade Ly has all day combo specials, where we can get a main dish with various sides. The dishes that we ordered were: Mongolian beef with fried rice and crab puffs, kung pao chicken with seamed rice and chicken egg roll, Hunan beef with steamed rice and crab puffs, and General Tso's Chicken with fried rice and vegetable spring rolls. Soups came as well, but we couldn't share (I got the wonton soup).


Menu: http://jadelysugarland.com/menu.html
Most of the food items here are Chinese, but they have Spicy Korean Beef and Chicken, and small Vietnamese section as well. What's particularly interesting is that there is a section of the menu that is completely in Mandarin. Based on Google Translate, the translation for it is the non-conventional Chinese food with the prices. Honestly, it should be ok to have the entire menu in English and Mandarin.



Mongolian Beef wih Fried Rice and Crab Puffs



Kung Pao Chicken with Steamed Rice and Chicken Egg Roll



Hunan Beef With Steamed Rice and Crab Puffs



General Tso's Chicken with Fried Rice and Vegetable Spring Rolls



Wonton Soup



The Verdict:
As soon as we got out soups, we all agreed that the soups here were far better than the ones at China King. The wonton soup had much more flavor and taste than the one at China King. Then the food came. The first things we all noticed were that the food was very fresh and that the presentation was really good as well (this is coming from a guy who doesn't usually care for presentation). The plates added a nice touch. One bite in, and we realized that the trip was well worth it. The crab puff was really full of flavor, and it wasn't too crispy as well. The fried rice was great, and so was the Mongolian Beef (which was what I had ordered). My friend couldn't stop praising the kung pao chicken that he was having. I had a piece of it (and so did the others), and I thought it was excellent as well. Definitely better than the same thing I had from Jamillah last month. The food was washed down with a few glasses of water. Overall, two thumbs up.

Service was great as well. The lady serving us was very friendly and attentive.

Conclusion:
After 5 years of eating China King whenever the feeling of having halal Chinese in Sugar Land came, I think it's time to make the switch to Jade Ly. Sure, the Mongolian Beef I had there was delicious, but this one was much better. The service was also much better here. If you guys want to have the best halal conventional Chinese food in Sugar Land, then this is the place to be.


Grading:
Food: 9/10
Service: 9/10
Total: 18/20 = 90% (A)
Pricing: $$ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Jade Ly Asian Bisro
5022 Highway 90A, Sugar Land, Texas
Phone: (281) 313-3300
Website: http://www.jadelysugarland.com/index.html
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JadeLyAsianBistro/
Timings: Tue-Sun: 11 AM - 10 PM
Caters: Yes

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or email me!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Chef on the Run: On the Run Towards One of the Best Halal Food Trucks in Town

Food Truck: Chef on The Run
Address: 9598 Main Street (intersection of 90 Alt and Buffalo Speedway), Houston, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 8/4/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Today I will be writing about a trip to a halal food truck that has been open for a while. The name? Chef on The Run. An appropriate name tbh because a food truck literally has a chef on the run from location to location (for the most part). I heard about this place from some of my followers on Instagram. They said that this place was worth checking out, so I took note of that. Fast-forward a few months, and I see myself hungry and in the Medical Center. I was thinking of just going to Gyro King or Abu Omar before heading to Tiny's Milk & Cookies to see whether it was truly the best cookies in Houston (and it really was). I decided to give this place a try and then head there.



Let The Experience Begin!
Chef on the Run is located at a gas station at the intersection of Buffalo Speedway and Alt 90. I parked my car at one of the pumps and walked there. I was greeted with "Ahlan" from the friendly lady and then proceeded to order.


Let's Eat!
I was actually about to order the chicken shawarma with the chicken shawarma fries. Shawarma was $6.50, which is the same as Abu Omar. The chicken shawarma fries were $7.50 (you'll see why below), so the thought of purchasing the combo was axed. I then thought chicken shawarma and fries, mostly similar to Abu Omar's chicken shawarma arabi. However, I ended up getting the chicken shawarma over fries. I saw a pic of it on Yelp, and it looked so mouthwatering. The chicken shawarma fries is basically fries topped with chicken shawarma, garlic sauce, and cheese! Honestly, it was the first time I ever heard of fries topped with shawarma. Now I did have fries topped with gyro meat and cheese from The Ultimate Wraps (Westheimer and Jeanetta near the Galleria), and that was incredibly awesome. But both are different and can't be comparable because it's different meats (this food truck doesn't have gyro meat yet) and the sauces are different. Here at Chef on The Run, you have the option of getting a spicy sauce topped as well. To play it safe, I put it on the side. It is recommended you do that if you are unsure of how spicy the sauce is. Wait time wasn't that bad. I spoke to the cashier while waiting for the food.


Menu: https://www.yelp.com/menu/chef-on-the-run-houston
This place is basically a Mediterranean food truck along with some Mediterranean-Mexican fusion. Along with shawarmas and platters, they have tacos and fajitas. Nothing is over $10! The shawarma fries are the newest addition to the menu from what I have seen.



The Chicken Shawarma Fries. Or as I'd say: fried potato salad with chicken and shredded cheese topped with a spicy and garlic sauce lol.



The Verdict:
So much food for less than $8?! I'll definitely take that! Not only was it incredibly filling, it was incredibly tasty. Gourmet fries are a thing nowadays because fries and ketchup is just incredibly boring. This is definitely one of the best gourmet fries dishes I've EVER had. The chicken shawarma meat was simply magnificient: cooked perfectly, and full of flavor. The fries were perfectly crispy. I can now safely say that the spicy sauce is not too spicy. It gives the perfect kick to the dish. This was definitely two thumbs up.

Service was great as well. There was a loudmouth customer in front, but she kept her cool and acted professionally, even though that customer was being awkward. It's nice when workers converse with customers while waiting he/she is cooking the food. It is a nice way to pass time as well as maintain a good relationship with the customers. It makes the customer feel welcome inside the restaurant or outside the food truck, as if the customer is a well respected guest. I honestly feel that at the majority of places, including food trucks, the interactions are very minimal. This can cause people to become bored while waiting for the food to come.

Conclusion:
Many say that in all of Harris County, Hillcroft is regarded to have some of the best halal food in town. But lately, the area inside 610 has been making a push for that title. Never would I have though that I will have to decide between three halal food trucks to choose from depending on if I'm craving Mediterranean or platter food, or having to choose between two places for some good halal burgers inside 610. I'll definitely be starting more trips to the food truck and hope to bring friends and family here as well. Believe it or not, this is actually the only place in town where you can get shawarma fries that is on the menu and not as a customized item. Trust me, you won't be disappointed with this place.


Grading:
Food: 10/10
Service: 10/10
Total: 20/20 = 100% (A)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Chef on the Run
9598 Main Street, Houston, Texas
Phone: (832) 951-9920
Website: none
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ChefontheRunTexas/
Timings: Mon-Thu: 11 AM - 2 AM; Fri-Sun: 11 AM - 3 AM
Caters: Yes

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or email me!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed 

Monday, August 7, 2017

Calypto Burger: Halal Burgers near Hobby Airport

Restaurant: Calypto Burger
Address: 6199 Griggs Road, Houston, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 7/30/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Today's review consists of a new burger place that has opened up in Southeast Houston. The place is called Calypto Burger. I first heard about this place from one of my best friends. He told me that he checked it out and that it was literally a really great addition to the halal burger scene in Houston. I was then invited to a soft opening, but I will mention only a minute amount because it would be unfair to critique a soft opening. This being because the place is still trying to click on all cylinders before opening to the public and also trying to impress the public. On that hot afternoon, I and one of my best friends, along with one of his friends, ventured out all the way to Southeast Houston to give this place a try.



Let The Experience Begin!
The restaurant is located just a few miles down on 45 from UH. It's actually located inside a convenient store on Griggs. This is in fact the closest halal restaurant to Hobby airport. While the outside may seem shady, the inside was very cordial. The owner, Zeshaun, greeted all of us. We spoke a bit about what changes they had made from the soft opening, and also about what got them to start up the restaurant and why they chose that specific area. Afterwards, we made our orders.


Let's Eat!
I ordered the jalapeno cheddar burger, which was double cheddar, jalapenos, caramelized onions and the option of a mayo or house aioli (I got the aioli) on a beef patty with buns. I also got a can of Hansen's Cola. Hansen's is a craft soda from California, and it uses cane sugar. The waiting time was about 13 minutes. Not bad since there were two other people dining with me.


Menu: Unlike other burger places I have been to, the menu here was short. But, it was for a good reason. They wanted to start with a small menu so that they could focus on making sure that the burgers are high quality. The other burgers looked really promising. Everything here is halal, and the bacon that is used is the beef bacon. I confirmed with them that the beef bacon is halal.


The Menu: Photo Credit: https://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/calypto-burger-houston-2?select=gNUDZ9ndlw0bwxrMzimgnQ

The Jalapeno Cheddar Burger



The Verdict:
I gotta tell you guys, they definitely clicked on all cylinders this time. The burger was excellent. One bite of the burger and you can tell that they definitely put in 110% effort into perfecting the burgers in time for the Grand Opening. Other people I know in real life came in to try their burgers, and they said that they enjoyed them as well. For the food, definitely two thumbs up.

Conclusion:
Calypto Burger showed what most Desi restaurant owners should do when someone gives feedback: use the feedback to better the product. Their willingness to hear back from others shows how they are determined to succeed in their business. And their efforts definitely paid off with the overwhelmingly positive feedback their burgers have received. If want to try something before heading to Hobby airport, or want to grab a bite after leaving Hobby Airport, then this is the place to be. I'll definitely come back and try the other burgers.

Just a heads up though: it is not advisable to come after sunset (since Houston sunsets are early in the winter) since the area is not the best.



Grading:
Food: 9/10
Total: 9/10 = 90% (A)
Pricing: $$ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Calypto Burger
6199 Griggs Road, Houston, Texas
Phone: (713) 874-4626
Website: none
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Calypto-Burger-2029036693991910/?ref=py_c
Timings: Mon-Thu: 11 AM - 7 PM; Fri-Sat: 11 AM - 8 PM; Sun: 12 PM - 6 PM
Caters: Not Yet

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or email me!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed 

Kingdom Bakery: Halal Kolaches In the Heart of Cinco Ranch

Restaurant: Kingdom Bakery
Address: 3030 Falcon Landing, Katy, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 7/18/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Today I will be talking about a new halal spot with a new halal food item making a return. What's the spot called? It's called Kingdom Bakery. And what does it have? KOLACHES! Yup, the popular food item in Southern Texas can finally be found using halal meats! From what I know, a Shipley's used to serve halal kolaches, but they stopped.
This place opened up during Ramadan. Since I planned to not go to any new places during Ramadan since I wholeheartedly am against restaurants upcharging just because it's Ramadan and also my preference of doing iftar at a mosque or my house, I had to wait until after Ramadan to give it a try. I got to give it a try after work one day. It was proven to be challenging because of their timings.. On most days, they close at 7 PM, while on Sundays, they close at 6! The plus side is that they open real early (as early as 7 AM!), so if you want to grab something before work, or have breakfast with your family without having to stick to only halwa puri or IHOP, this would the best bet! So one day after work, I drove there and gave it a try.



Let The Experience Begin!
The restaurant is located at the intersection of Westheimer Parkway and Falcon Landing. It was small compared to other places I've been to. There was a nice display of the food. I asked them if it was halal, but the guy said he didn't know what halal meant. BUT, a lady whom I am assuming to be one of the main persons running the restaurant said that certain items were.


Let's Eat!
I ordered three kolaches: ground beef, mushroom and potato, and spinach and feta. Didn't need to wait for a long time to get them. I then headed home and had them.


Menu: http://eat24hrs.com/restaurants/order2/menu.php?id=101276&utm_source=101276&utm_medium=Website&utm_campaign=WRestaurantSite&utm_content=OrderButton

I put this link up because it featured the prices of the menu items. Based on my messages and what the owner wrote to me on Facebook, everything is halal except for the beef sausage kolache , the turkey sandwich, and the roast beef sandwich. They also have halal savory crepes. Price wise, it is actually good. Most of the menu items are under $10.

Ground Beef Kolache
 
Mushroom and potato kolache



Spinach and Feta Kolache





The Verdict:
Believe it or not, this was my first time EVER eating a kolache. And man, the wait was worth it for the most part. While the beef and feta and spinach kolaches were excellent, the potatoes and mushrooms could've been a bit better. The balance between the fillings and the pastry were perfect. Service was great; no complaints there.


Conclusion:
Kingdom Bakery is a place that I would definitely return to. Not only will I get the kolaches I really liked, I will also try their halal savory crepes as well!



Grading:
Food: 8/10
Service: 9/10
Total: 17/20 = 85% (B)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Kingdom Bakery
3030 Falcon Landing, Katy, Texas
Phone: (713) 306-5698
Website: http://www.kingdom-bakery.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kingdombakerykaty/
Timings: Tue-Fri: 7 AM - 7 PM; Sat: 8 AM - 7 PM; Sun: 9 AM - 6 PM; Mon: closed
Caters: Yes

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or email me!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed 

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Crispy Or Grilled: The Closest to Halal Chick Fil A We'll Ever Have, and It's Darn Good

Food Truck: Crispy or Grilled
Address: 2220 Brazos Street, Houston, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 7/5/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Today I will be talking about the newest halal food truck in Houston. It is called Crispy or Grilled. The name strongly suggests that you get an option between crispy or grilled chicken, since those are the two most common ways that people enjoy chicken. I first heard about this from a food group (which I was deliberately left out off) going and trying a variety of items that they offered. It attracted a lot of fanfare, and I was also eager to try it. There were one surprising fact that I learned about this place. This place is run by the same people who run Dasman, a Mediterranean food truck. And this raised a red flag for me. I actually tried out Dasman during Super Bowl weekend and did not like it. It was basically chicken over rice for $10 served in the same thing that many restaurants use for their fries. So many of their competitors offer the same thing but with bigger quantities and better tastes for similar prices. Now they did respond professionally, but what happened next is the main reason why I did not write a review (and this move truly paid off).A lady, who is friends with the owners, set up the tasting for the food group, and had beef with me because of a cook off I did, literally lost it. And man it was ugly. Long story short, she thought I didn't know what excellent Mediterranean food is, even though I lived and grew up eating Mediterranean food in an Arab country, and she actually threatened to slap me. The biggest irony in all of this stuff is that she loves Cedar's and Abu Omar, WHICH ARE MEDITERRANEAN SPOTS THAT I LOVE GOING TO. It was without a doubt one of the funniest things I've seen in 4.5 years of doing this blog.
This place opened up during Ramadan. Since I planned to not go to any new places during Ramadan since I wholeheartedly am against restaurants upcharging just because it's Ramadan and also my preference of doing iftar at a mosque or my house, I had to wait until after Ramadan to give it a try. I got to give it a try after work one day. So I drove there and gave it a try.



Let The Experience Begin!
The food truck is located on Brazos Street in front of Little Woodrow's and parked next to Dasman. I parked behind the truck, only to find out that it costs $8 to park there. The line was not that bad when I went, although I heard can get long late at night. I went to the foot truck and decided to order.



Let's Eat!
I ordered the crispy chicken sandwich. It was basically crispy chicken with lettuec, tomatoes, and pickles in between two brioche buns. I paid $9.73 (tax included) for this. The waiting time was about 9 minutes.



Menu: Not only do they have sandwiches, they also have chicken tenders (you'll never get halal tenders at Raising Canes), tacos, and starters. It's a limited menu, which is understood because they just started.



Menu. Photo Credit:
The Sandwich



The Verdict:
When I saw the dish, I realized that they actually priced this right. Many of the good burger or sandwich places would charge similar amounts. And my goodness, this burger was insanely awesome. The Dasman people definitely redeemed themselves with this food truck. The sandwich was very filling, and the taste was just amazing. There was a lot of flavor inside the burger and everything was fresh. The chicken was very crispy. Overall, two thumbs up.
The service was great. The people were really nice, and thankfully they didn't pick on me for not liking Dasman.



Conclusion:
Even though I never had or will never have a chicken sandwich from Chick Fil A, this sandwich is one of the best chicken sandwiches I've ever had. I'll definitely come back and try their other options. If you want to eat something that literally comes close to a halal chicken sandwich from Chick Fil A, then this is the place to go!



Grading: 
Food: 10/10
Service: 9/10
Total: 19/20 = 95% (A)
Pricing: $$ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Crispy or Grilled
2220 Brazos Street, Houston, Texas
Phone: (832) 998-5955
Website: none
Timings: Mon-Wed: 6 PM - 1 AM; Thu: 6 AM - 2 PM; Fri-Sat: 6 PM - 2:30 AM; Sun: closed
Caters: Yes

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or email me!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed 

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Rehla Foods: Great Filling Meals for a Very Affordable Price

Restaurant: Rehla Foods
Address: 4901 Rose Street, Houston, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: none
Date of visit: 7/3/17



Backround:
Salam/hey guys! Today I will be talking about a place called Rehla Foods. So what is Rehla Foods? Rehla Foods is more of a pop up place rather than a restaurant. The reason? They are inside another restaurant (The Twisted Palate) and they are open for only three days per week. All that is set to change in a few weeks as they will shift to a new place. But for now, we are just going to write about the past experience. I first heard about the place after I received an email from the owner about trying the place after they opened last year. I never got to try because of school, where I had classes on all days that it was open, and it was a lengthy drive from my old workplace. That all changed when I realized that it was only 10 minutes from my new workplace. After clocking out for lunch, I went there.



Let The Experience Begin!
The Twisted Palate is located on Rose and Durham in the Heights. Nothing much to explain, except the fact that I ordered over the phone. When I got to the place, there were other cars waiting for their food. I just waited until an employee came to my car with the food.



Let's Eat!
I ordered a single cheeseburger for myself and a boneless chicken biryani to share with my boss, since he's a big biryani fan. The cheeseburger had the basic meat, cheese, and vegetables on a challah bun. The sauces came on the side rather than inside the burger (for a good reason). The biryani was Lahori style, meaning that it is biryani that is popular in the Pakistani city of Lahore (considered to be Pakistan's food capital) I paid a total of $11.24 for that. Wow. Incredibly affordable. In many other places, the price would be at least $20.
A very important thing to note is that this is not a dine in place. They only do delivery or takeout as of right now.



Menu: http://www.rehlafoods.com/our-food
Individually, the burger was $5.69 and the biryani was $4.69. This is by far the cheapest biryani I've had in a while actually. They have a diverse selection of food. They hope to add the spaghetti soon.



Le Burger

Le Biryani

The Verdict:
Both food items looked tasty and fresh. Both had big portions as well. Regarding the burger, it was decent, but certainly not the best. There could've been more flavor in the burger. No need to worry about the seeds on the bun; they''re black sesame seeds! The biryani was completely different, It was actually excellent! Without a doubt the second biryani I have had that I actually liked. And at $4.69+ tax, it was a great value. The service was ok. Nothing to complain about.



Conclusion:
I cannot wait to go to their new location and get their biryani again, but for burgers, I'd just stick to my top spots in town. If you want to have some really good biryani in the Heights, then you should check this place out! They even deliver as well!



Grading:
Service: 8/10
Food: 7/10 (6/10 for burger and 8/10 for biryani)
Total: 15/20 = 75% (C)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Rehla Foods
Address: 4901 Rose Street, Houston, Texas
Phone: (713) 340-9172
Website: http://www.rehlafoods.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RehlaFoods/
Email: helpingyou@rehlafoods.com
Timings: Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays: 10 AM - 3 PM
Caters: Yes
Delivery available

Feel free to comment below, send me an email, or message me on Facebook!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Chicken Holiday: Halal American Fare in Alief

Restaurant: Chicken Holiday
Address: 7030 Addicks Clodine Road, Houston, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: none
Date of visit: 6/24/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Eid Mubarak to everyone. After taking a break during Ramadan, I am back! The reason I took a break was to focus more on my faith. I also preferred breaking my fast at either the mosque or my house. Breaking the fast at the mosque really reminded me of the time when I was in Makkah during Ramadan as a kid and breaking the fast there. Now that Ramadan is over, I can finally go back to reviewing more places! The first place after Ramadan I went to was called Chicken Holiday. The history is this place is unique. They used to be located on West Bellfort and Dairy Ashford. They were really popular with both Muslims and non-Muslims. Then all of a sudden, they closed down. Finally, just a few weeks ago, they reopened for business again this time at a new location. The two things that they were known for were their fried chicken, and RIBS. Thus, halal ribs are now available at another Houston restaurant! This is welcoming news, since the history of halal ribs haven't been the best. This is due to the fact that many do not understand that ribs are a more expensive cut of beef. The prices of the ribs at the halal places were in fact similar or even lesser than established places such as Franklin's in Austin and Killen's in Pearland. I do hope that this one would actually be successful.
I decided to end my Ramadan in style by trying the place out before heading to the nearest mosque and pray.



Let The Experience Begin!
The new location of Chicken Holiday is located on Addicks Clodine and Bellaire Blvd next to Texas Pizza. The inside was a standard fare of tables and the cashier, but it was eerily empty. Literally nobody but an uncle (who I'm assuming is the owner) waiting for customers to come. The original plan was to dine in, but because there was nobody, I just got it to go.



Let's Eat!
I ordered the chicken and ribs combo. It was basically two pieces of fried chicken and two pieces of ribs with a roll and fries. The price: $10.98 with tax!!! RIBS FOR LESS THAN $15?! What an unbelievable deal! It definitely gets better once I describe the menu. The waiting time was long at 23 minutes and 11 seconds, understandable since it's ribs that are involved.



Menu: This is basically the party piece of the restaurant. They have your average American fare along with ribs as well as an extensive seafood menu. The ribs prices are just phenomenal.

Front

Menu Page 2

Menu Page 3

Menu Page 4

Menu Page 5

Menu Page 6

Ribs and Chicken combo with bun and fries. I got it to go.


The Verdict:
I realized that the trip here from Cypress was worth it. The fried chicken was perfect: not too crispy and not too soggy. The ribs were really good as well. However, they could definitely put some more BBQ sauce on the ribs. The service was not bad. The person did provide me dates and allowed me to get a bottle of water to break my fast.



Conclusion:
Seems like Chicken Holiday picked up where it left off based on previous reviews of the place. I plan on coming as a regular customer whenever I am in the Alief area. If you want to take someone for some halal BBQ ribs, then for now, this is the place to go!



Grading:
Service: 8/10
Food: 8/10
Total: 16/20 = 80% (B)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Chicken Holiday
7030 Addicks Clodine Road, Houston, Texas
Phone: (832) 672-5576
Website: none
Facebook: none
Timings: Unknown. Will Update
Caters: Unknown

Feel free to comment below, send me an email, or message me on Facebook!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed

Monday, May 29, 2017

The Ultimate Wraps: A Halal Food Truck In Greenspoint

Food Truck: The Ultimate Wraps
Address:
Buffet or a-la-carte: A-la-carte
Date of Visit: 5/3/17

UPDATE 8/21/17: They have moved to a new location at the intersection of Westheimer and Jeanetta Rd (near Hillcroft intersection). I got their Gyro Fries and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Background:
Salam/hey guys! Today I will be recapping my experience at a brand new halal food truck. This food truck is called The Ultimate Wraps. I first heard about this food truck when the owner first posted about it to get the word out that they opened up, and also when the owner did a competition where the winners would get a free wrap. I was one of the winners, so I got to give them a try. It was also a good study break for me from finals preparation (which is why I've been behind on my reviews). Before heading to Prairie View to prepare for my first final, I headed to the place.



Let The Experience Begin!
The food truck is located at the gas station on Beltway 8 and Greenspoint Drive. There was a line of cars with people waiting to get their food. After waiting a little bit in line, I was ready to order.



Let's Eat!
I asked them what their most popular wrap is, and the answer was the gyro. So I got that. They asked for spicy or regular. I got regular since it is the same thing that I got when I got the gyro at Fyza Alwadi's. The waiting time was about 11 minutes and 46 seconds.



Menu: It's only because of pictures on Yelp that posting the menu pics became possible. The Facebook page does not list the prices of their menu items, and their website is not fully ready yet. I hope they fix that so that people would be able to know how much they are expected to pay.
This place offers Indian/Pakistani, Mediterranean, and American fare. Best of all, the prices are affordable. Nothing in the menu is over $10. Really good if you're on a budget and want a cheap meal. Click the pictures to zoom in.


Fries, Catering Information, and Front of Pamphlet (photo credit: https://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/the-ultimate-wraps-houston?select=pYZsSHL_E4-SqhDi1P5mzA)

Wraps, Philly Steaks, and NY Style platters (Photo Credit: https://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/the-ultimate-wraps-houston?select=vve08-HB3GhlHmoUSHlYww)


The Gyro

The Ultimate Verdict:
The ultimate verdict was that it was pretty good, and filling as well. Everything complemented each other. The service was great. The people were really nice and helpful. 



Conclusion:
The Ultimate Wraps is a nice new addition to the halal food scene in Northside. This is a good place to go and get a quick bite.



Grading:
Food: 7.5/10
Service: 8/10
Total: 15.5/20 = 77.5% (C)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$




Saturday, May 13, 2017

Pepperoni's- Yes, That's The Actual Name of the Restaurant AND They Have Halal Options as Well

Restaurant: Pepperoni's
Address: 8502 South Main Street, Houston, Texas
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of Visit: 4/8/17



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Finals are over, so this means I am back! I was so busy with school that this is the only review from April that I am writing. Today I will be writing about a new pizza place that has halal options. The name? Pepperoni's. Don't think for a second that they only serve Pepperoni pizza. They have a huge variety as well. I first heard of this only a few days ago at the Menu of Menus event that was hosted by the Houston Press (It was a great event with a lot of good halal/seafood/vegetarian foods). I had their cheese pizza there and it was fantastic. They gave out free 8" pizza coupons to every person who came to their booth at the event. They have locations all over town. I took one and made the intention of going to their Montrose location and getting their cheese pizza again (they have locations in Montrose, Medical Center, Katy, and Fort Bend County). Next thing you know, I get a tip from one of my followers on Instagram that they have started having halal beef toppings at their Medical Center location! Immediately the next day, I was able to go and give it a try!



Let The Experience Begin!
The location that I went to was the Medical Center one. It is located at the intersection of South Main and Braesman. Next to the door is the entire menu. Impressive. Inside, it was small, but it had the usual tables with the cashier area as well as a TV. On the wall, there was a sign that said "Halal Beef Now Available on Request".



Let's Eat!
Without any hesitation, I ordered an 8" pizza with halal beef, and used my coupon. The waiting time wasn't that bad.



Menu: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/555e06e2e4b0f085e3d3d1ea/t/5866aace9de4bbfbbf62837c/1483123414915/Montrose16.pdf

This is the menu for both the Medical Center and Montrose locations. I didn't post the menu for Fort Bend county and Katy because ONLY the Medical Center location has halal beef as of right now. My pizza would have costed $7.57 (tax included).



The 8" Halal Beef Pizza


Halal Beef Sign

The Verdict:
While this had lesser halal options than Russo's a few miles away, the pizza here was impressive. It was piping hot and fresh when it came to the table. The taste was also really good. It was far better than the pizza chains and some of the pizzas that I have had in my life. Overall, the place did a great job. No complaints about the service. The people were really nice and gave me no issues.



Conclusion:
Pepperoni's managed to impress me twice in a week. I definitely see myself coming here again on a regular basis if I want to eat a whole pizza myself without having to order a medium and literally stuff my face. The food comes fresh and hot, and there are no issues in the service. I hope that in the future there will be more halal toppings to choose from.



Grading:
Service: 8/10
Food: 9/10
Total: 17/20 = 85% (B)
Pricing: $$ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Pepperoni's
Address: 8502 South Main Street, Houston, Texas
Phone: (713) 664-5353
Website: pepperonis.net
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Pepperonis
Instagram: pepperonis_pizza
Email: pizza@pepperonis.net
Timings: Mon-Sun: 10 AM - 10 PM
Caters: Yes
Online ordering available

Feel free to comment below, send me an email, or message me on Facebook!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Holy Land Cafe: Great Mediterranean food in the Great Plains

Restaurant: Holy Land Cafe
Address: 12275 West 87th Street Parkway, Lenexa, Kansas
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: April Fool's Day, 2017



Background:
Salam/hey guys! Today I will be talking about my experience at a well known Mediterranean restaurant in the Kansas side of town. This is also the only review on the Kansas side of this trip as well as the last review of this trip. I know it has been way too long, but finals are on the corner and I had a huge onslaught of tests this past month along with exhilarating lab reports and assignments. Anyways, the place in question is called Holy Land Cafe. I heard about it from my uncle, who said that it is one of the best. So I took his word and went there before staying at the hotel where the rest of the PV crew were staying. The reason for that was because the bus the next day for Houston would leave at 6 AM, and that it would not be practical to drop there early morning since the hotel is near Kansas City airport and my uncle's house in Overland Park was 38 miles away. After bidding adieu to my relatives, it was time to go there.



Let The Experience Begin!
Holy Land Cafe is located near the interseciton of West 87th and Quivara, a few blocks from I-35. The setting was very modest and it gives the feeling of being in a hole-in-the-wall place. We were welcomed, then given menus.



Let's Eat!
I ordered the lentil soup, and chicken shawarma plate, and so did my uncle from Dallas who was with me. I also got a chicken shawarma for dinner, because the "banquet" that I was supposed to go to did not have any food. Waiting time was a modest 13 minutes and 31 seconds.



Menu (click to view): Lunch MenuDinner Menu
Interestingly, this place serves biryani, but it looks more Arab than Indian/Pakistani (Yes, there is an Arab version of it). Otherwise, this place serves up popular Mediterranean dishes. And they are not stingy on the sides unlike Habashi House.


Bowl of Salad

Chicken Shawarma Plate

Lentil Soup

The Verdict:
Both my uncle and I loved the food here. I thought that this place had the best Mediterranean food that I have had in the Kansas City area. The lentil soup was very flavorful and fresh. The chicken had the perfect amount of flavor and taste. Overall, two thumbs up. No complaints about the service. The people were really nice.


Conclusion:
If you are in Kansas City, then you should give Holy Land Cafe a try! Really good Mediterranean food and good service. I definitely see myself coming back here the next time I visit Kansas City.



Grading:
Service: 9/10
Food: 9/10
Total: 18/20 = 90% (A)
Pricing: $$ out of $$$$



Restaurant Information:
Holy Land Cafe
12275 West 87th Street Parkway, Lenexa, Kansas
Phone: (913) 310-9911
Website: http://holylandcafe.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Holy-Land-Cafe-167479979938481/
Timings: Mon-Thu: 11 AM - 9 PM; Fri-Sat: 11 AM - 10 PM; Sun: 12 PM - 8 PM
Caters: yes

Feel free to comment below, send me a message on Facebook, or send me an email!

Cheers!
Zain Mohammed