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Miami's Top Five Falafel Sandwiches

Categories: Best of Miami
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Lee Klein
Pita Loca's falafel sandwich.
I have a dream in which I travel to the Middle East, gather all of the troubled tribes together, calmly ascend a modest soap box, and say unto the people: "People. Sit down. Relax. Have some falafel, some pita bread, a little hummus and tahini, maybe a Coca-Cola. You all enjoy that, right?" And of course they all do, and in my dream, they pass around the falafel balls, pita bread, accompanying dips and bowls of diced tomato and cucumber. And they help one another assemble falafel sandwiches and forget the centuries of animosity, hatred, violence and death. Until someone says, "Is this Yasmin's falafel? Shlomo's is a lot better." And then all hell breaks loose.

So if I were to try to reenact this scene in real life, I'd take along falafel from these 5 places in Miami. They're politically neutral, and inarguably delicious.

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Bocadillo's distinctive rendition.
5. Bocadillo Clandestino
This is admittedly the dark horse of the group. Or perhaps the dark bicycle would be a better way of putting it, as this secretive South Beach sandwich delivery service brings one sandwich per day to your office or home -- by bike. So to sample this excellent and distinctive falafel, you have to be in South Beach (anywhere will do, including on the Beach itself), call or text in to the Bocadillo team (Anita Bonita, Black Mamba, and Italian Stallion), hope to dear God that the sandwich du jour is the Light Load: Light and crispy falafel balls in fluffy pita bread with fresh, ripe avocado, radish slices, alfalfa sprouts, roasted garlic hummus, and tahini dressing. If this is the sandwich of the day, you'll just have to fork over $10 in cash to the delivery person. If not, you can still get a great sandwich and just try your luck again another day. A falafel this good is worth a little gambling.

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Oriental's falafel platter.
4. Oriental Bakery & Grocery Co.
Certainly nobody has been making falafel for longer than the Palestinian family that owns Oriental Bakery; they started up in 1954. Nice part about Oriental, other than the falafel which we will soon get to, is that it's a market stocked with all manner of Middle Eastern ingredients, supplies, and household items -- you can nab some olives from Persia or from Palestine or from Peru. After perusing the aisles, head to the cafeteria section in the back of the shop and enjoy a sandwich with sesame-seed-flecked falafels, the smoothest hummus around, a splash of tahini, the obligatory salad, all fluffed into a Syrian pita or laffa bread that gets baked on premise. Nobody's falafel sandwich comes in a better bread than Oriental's. It won our Best Pita Bread in 2000, and Best Falafel in 2001 and in 2008.


Location Info

Pita Hut Israeli Restaurant & Grill

530 Arthur Godfrey Road, Miami Beach, FL

Category: Restaurant

Pita Loca

601 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, FL

Category: Restaurant

Elie's Cafe - CLOSED

145 E. Flagler St., Miami, FL

Category: Restaurant

Oriental Bakery & Grocery Co

1760 SW 3rd Ave., Miami, FL

Category: Restaurant

Bocadillo Clandestino

, Miami Beach, FL

Category: Restaurant


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5 comments
Earl Sandwich
Earl Sandwich

I love Ravuna'maahandranan Alhandjra in Hollywood.

Michael
Michael

Pita Plus of Aventura...it's always packed at lunch with israelis and jews from the area.

Moon3713
Moon3713

I think khourys is the best

Dfasdf
Dfasdf

the best falafel sandwich is at haventrust

Gina Gallagher
Gina Gallagher

No love for North Miami???  The author obviously has not been to the North Miami/Aventura area with its large Israeli population and at least 6 "authentic" restaurants selling Falafel all of which are equally as good at the other.

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