When the craving for falafel hits we usually make a beeline for Sunrise Deli on Irving Street in the Sunset District (you can also find them in Berkeley and at two locations in downtown SF). While I always get the avocado-falafel sandwich — neon pink pickled turnips! — my boys prefer their falafel a la carte, straight out of the bag still warm and crispy from the fryer. My littlest one in particular will keep his hand thrust out and will chant a chorus of “more…. more… more…..” until I can prove to him that the bag is empty. That’s just as well I guess because while falafel sandwiches are super yum, they are also guaranteed to be super messy. And for a spill-prone eater as myself, I can pretty much expect to find myself wearing a side of hummus.
A trip to Sunrise Deli has a few other benefits too: the guys behind the counter are really nice and it happens to be just a few doors down from one of our favorite produce/ethinic markets (22nd and Irving Market). This is where we can find fresh quince, cranberry beans, Persian cucumbers and green garbonzo beans in season, and where have discovered Middle Eastern mammoul date cookies, spicy harissa paste, dried lemons (bought them but haven’t figured out what to do with them yet), and pomegranate molasses. It’s a mini food adventure just to wander up and down the aisles for a few minutes.
Discovering other great places to eat falafel in the Bay Area is always high on our to do list. I hear Holy Land in Oakland is worth the trip, and we’re overdue for a trip back to Old Jerusalem and Truly Mediterranean in the Mission, not to mention finally making it down to Falafel Drive-In in San Jose.
If you’ve got a hot tip on falafel in the Bay Area or elsewhere, let us know!! My little one thanks you in advance :).
- Oh yeah… straight out of the bag.