Friday, December 19, 2008

Toronto Diversion

Toronto and its surrounding area is home to about 12 million people. There are only 30 million people in Canada, so yeah, when it seems like all the Canadians live here, it's almost true.

I've been impressed by the diversity here, not only the people, but also with what goes along with a hugely diverse group of people, the food! On a street outside my hotel out in the suburbs, I can have French, Japanese, Korean, Indian, and Middle Eastern.

I just wrote an article about Spyro Gyro in Lancaster, PA, where I had the worst beef shawarma, and just was able to tolerate the fact that their authentic beef and lamb gyro actually tasted good.

So when it was time for lunch yesterday, I, of course, made it across the street on a blustery day to get a shawarma sandwich from Shawarma Max. The classic vertical spits were there roasting towers of chicken and beef. Succulent juices were running down, self basting the meat. I ordered several chicken shawarma sandwiches for the team, and they were off with a frenzy. Shaved down, grilled lightly, thin pita bread was split open and filled with tomatoes, lettuce, onions, pickled turnips, stuffed with the chicken shawarma, topped with tahini and hot sauces, wrapped like lightning, and within a minute, I had everything I ordered in front of me. Now THAT is GOOD FAST FOOD!

The sandwiches were amazing. Moist and well seasoned, everything melded together to give such a perfect ratio of everything. Everyone scarfed the sandwiches down - they were too good to really take their time. The single person on the team who opted for sushi looked longingly at our sandwiches. "I'm getting THAT tomorrow!" she declared. Now that we're in the midst of a terrible snowstorm, she'll have to deal with what the restaurant in the building can give us.

Then we got a few Falafels to taste. Stellar. Just enough moisture to keep the falafel from falling apart when you bite into them, but not so moist that it was mushy on the inside. The crusting on the outside was perfectly crunchy, but still leaving the inside soft. Stellar place.

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