>> Lit Charcoal Shawarma | Eat the World NYC

17 September 2019

Lit Charcoal Shawarma


About seven months ago, a new shawarma spot opened in this space on Belmont Avenue, taking over from another Middle Eastern restaurant that only lasted a couple years at most. What was interesting though was the "Since 1990" which graced the awning, but this required a little more investigation since there were no other branches and this location was brand new.

This passage of time of nearly 30 years is an homage to the proprietor's father, who first opened a similar restaurant in Amman in that year. He currently has three restaurants in Jordan, but this is the first of the same style here in the United States. When asked about the differences, the woman at the counter said it was healthier, but after eating it is the importance of that charcoal smoke getting into your meat just like at the backyard grill.

Take a peek into the kitchen to get a look at the chicken shawarma spit (above) to get a better sense of the cooking style. Youtube videos of horizontal charcoal shawarma spits are on and in constant rotation on the television here, but being up close is exciting.

Options here are simple, chicken or beef (the beef is on a "standard" vertical spit), served alone as a wrap or as a combo with fries, coleslaw, pickled vegetables, and garlic sauce. Most people opt for the combo, continuing a trend of popularity of Arabic-style shawarma with fries being seen around different parts of town.

You can order these by length, in 12, 18, 24, and 60 inch increments, the latter of which is the family combo. This 18" shawarma combo (above and below) included two 6 inch lengths of chicken and one beef, as mixed orders are allowed. As promised, the wraps are accompanied with fries that are dusted with spices and a nice container of garlic sauce that is perfect for dipping them if you do not want extra on your sandwich.

While the beef is good in its own right, the chicken is the obvious star of the show, smoky from the charcoal and perfect in taste and texture. It feels like not a drop of fat has left the bird during cooking as every bite is moist and tender.

Almost as equally exciting is the fruit cocktails and smoothies portion of the menu, where many options are available. Those seeking juices or smoothies from one or a couple fruits will be well taken care of, but you can also go big with the addition of fresh fruit, nuts, honey and cream.

The concoction below had it all for $9.99, and could have been a lunch on its own if desired. Recommended.

Next time you find yourself at the Paterson Great Falls, instead of coming into Paterson for a meal, make your way up the hill to Haledon (pronounced HALE-dun) to check out this new and interesting shawarma shop. Leave a comment on the wall if you like, and take a trip back 30 years with the family that started cooking in Amman.

Lit Charcoal Shawarma Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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