Ottawa - The first time I set foot in Ottawa, I noticed a high density of shawarma joints near the Rideau centre. Within 5-block radius, there are at least 15 shawarma restaurants. Montreal does not even have that many per neighborhood. During my undergrad years, when I stayed up late in school to finish my assignments, I often go to Basha, the chain shawarma joints in Montreal, ordering their sandwich and potato with garlic sauce combo.
If you ask any locals where is the best shawarma joint in Ottawa, everyone will refer you to go to Shawarma Palace located on Rideau St. I went there around 2pm, outside rush hours, still the place is packed and there is a long queue to order. This joint attracts a large crowd and families of Middle-Easterners which is usually a good sign that Shawarma Palace is serving authentic food. Also, the interior is clean, bright and modern. These words are rarely associated for describing a shawarma joint.
Another big plus is that once the sandwich is fully wrapped, it is heated on an actual grill instead of a panini press that most joints use. It gives a pleasant charcoal-grilled taste on the pita bread. I ordered the beef shawarma, it is thinly sliced, thinner than what I used to. It's moist and tender. I can taste freshness of the greens and pickled radishes, and the velvety texture of the hummus. Along with the sandwich, I had a side of roasted potatoes with garlic sauce. Definitely worth ordering!
|Beef Shawarma and Potato with Garlic Saice|
464 Rideau St.