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Michael Byrne

Shapiro's Café

Address:7 W. Preston St.
Baltimore, MD 

More on Shapiro's Café.

By Michael Byrne | Posted 4/7/2010

Shapiro's had us at falafel. As in, that near-perfect food of balled-up and fried chickpea mash that is way too scarce around Baltimore. On the small and eclectic menu of this new Mount Vernon lunch spot--taking the place of the defunct Sylvan Beach Café--it's one of two Mediterranean specialties and, rest assured, it is divine. Quite large and served slathered in a combination of sauces (boasting a little kick) with a chopped medley of fresh veggies, the falafel pieces are delicately spiced and lightly crunchy. Note that it's only $4.99. We also tried a shawarma pita ($5.99), a common Middle Eastern fast-food staple, boasting marinated just-right--as in, complementing not overpowering--slices of lamb meat, veggies, and tahini. Imagine a non-junk food version of a gyro. Service on our trip was beyond friendly, with the gentle-voiced man at the counter even offering us chips and some pieces of fruit in apology for the falafel taking a little long (very worth it). And if Middle Eastern food isn't your bag, something on the menu here is: from turkey wraps to beef brisket to corned beef.

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