The most rewarding aspect of New York City’s melting pot culture is the act of discovering something new. NYC Food Guy is guiding you off the beaten path towards Naomi’s on Main Street in Kew Gardens Hills, Queens where my favorite falafel is served. Read on to find out what make’s Naomi’s such a tasty experience…
At $2.50 per half falafel, you’re hard pressed to spend $10 for a very filling meal.
Simple Recipe Equalys Simply Delicious
My go to meal is 3 half falafels, a plate of pepperoncini, some extra tahini sauce, an order of fries well done, and a can of selzter. You’ll get that all for under $10. I can honestly say the food has not changed at Naomi’s in the last fifteen years. If that’s not a sign of success, what is? A heated, albeit pre-packaged pita, is pried open and stuffed with 5 freshly fried falafel balls, iceberg lettuce, shredded carrots and cabbage, and then topped with a housemade tahini sauce. You can add any number of accoutrements including pepperoncini, pickled beets and a very spicy hot sauce.
But while the tahini sauce and the consistency of the recipe have certainly assured lasting deliciousness, the key ingredient are the balls of fried chickpea which wait at the bottom of each pita.
Bursting the Mamoun’s Bubble
It’s no surprise Naomi’s falafel balls are by far the tastiest I’ve tried. It’s a result of an all chickpea recipe, served at Naomi’s and found mainly in Israel. Whereas Syrian, Lebanese and Egyptian falafel feature the use of the cheaper fava bean or a combo of fava and chickpea, the delicious Israeli version is straight chickpea. It’s not easy to tell the difference, but in my experience the most telling factor is that an all chickpea ball is lighter and more delicate than the mealy fava bean falafel ball found at, you guessed it, Mamoun’s. As good as all the drunks on MacDougal and St. Mark’s think Mamoun’s is, the bubble is burst. Quality counts.
Balls of Fury
Creating Naomi’s falafel balls is a simple process. The balls are first scooped into a device made for pushing them into a vat of bubbling oil. And then, they fry to a beautiful golden brown.
Kosher Pizza Done Right
I’ll admit, I don’t come to Main Street in Kew Garden Hills for the Kosher pizza. But on a stretch of street where at least two other falafel & Kosher pizza restaurants reside (Shimon’s & Benji’s), Naomi’s pizza is by far the best. Looking at the pies below, you wouldn’t even know they’re kosher. They look like pies you’d find in slice joints in Manhattan, and they’re better than some of those too.
Prices Worth Traveling For
Another great thing about eating outside of Manhattan is the precipitous drop in food prices. Take a look at the affordable and diverse offering of Middle Eastern delicacies beyond falafel. I’ve only tried the hummus, which is creamy and fresh but fairly standard.
Naomi’s Kosher Pizza & Falafel6828 Main St
Flushing, NY 11367
718-520-8754 Map It