#28: Chicken Shawarma, Karam


69 down. 32 to go.

My friends are starting to move farther away into the depths of Brooklyn. South Slope is one thing. Even Kensington I’ve learned to deal with. But Sunset Park? This is getting out of control. Once a twenty minute walk or short bus ride to my friend Cyr’s apartment, is now a much longer trip, and my motivation for long, inconsistent subway rides isn’t what it used to be. Tonight, however, it didn’t take much to convince me to make the trek deep into the heart of Brooklyn. Just the promise of a sandwich, Phish, and some great company.

Phish is playing a four-night run at the Garden starting tonight. Instead of actually going to the show, which is expensive, exhausting and crowded with hippies (I’m geting old), we decided to stream it from the comfort of our own (my friends Cyr’s) couch. Make fun all you want, but aside from the constant webpage freezing and reloading, it was a great plan.

With over an hour until showtime, we hopped in the Cyrmobile and drove to Karam, a Middle Eastern joint in Bay Ridge. The tiny restaurant wasn’t crowded, and for some apparent reason we still had to wait 45 minutes for our food, but we were feeling good about this one. The food smelled delicious as we raced to get back to the apartment. Cyr (#6 on the leaderboard), Becky (her first sandwich!), Finn (a dog) and I anxiously awaited for the lights to go down. And BOOM! It’s show time.

12.28.2011    |    Karam, Brooklyn, NY
Spinach Pie, Zaatar Pie* > Baba Gahanouj, Tabouleh, Grape Leaves, Chicken Shawarma**

Encore: Lentil Soup

* First time eaten
** Hot Sauce teases

The chicken shawarma was clearly the highlight of the show. The sandwich was overflowing with slices of juicy chicken and tons of bright vegetables including tomatoes, lettuce and pickled turnips. Everything was doused with a deliciously potent garlic sauce and wrapped in a warm, grilled flatbread. For those who went to Conn College, it tasted like a Middle Eastern Sammy the Bull and it brought back fond memories of many nights spent at John’s Brick Oven.

It turned out, not going to the show wasn’t so bad after all. We got to see and hear everything that was played. The subway ride that I whined about earlier was much more convenient than exiting the Garden after a Phish show. Beer was cheaper, dancing room more spacious, and bathroom lines much shorter. Most importantly, the lot food was much tastier. And we’re going to see Phish live the next two nights anyway.

Karam | 8519 4th Avenue, Brooklyn

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