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Al Bawadi Grill - Niles [opening early 2020]

Al Bawadi Grill - Niles [opening early 2020]
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  • Post #31 - May 27th, 2020, 12:14 pm
    Post #31 - May 27th, 2020, 12:14 pm Post #31 - May 27th, 2020, 12:14 pm
    boudreaulicious wrote:I’ll take AB’s baba, muthuwama, tabouli, hummus with beef shawarma, falafel, pickles, eggplant with tomato, and chicken shawarma sandwich over pretty much any other place in town.


    And that's where our paths diverge. While I certainly enjoyed my meal, nothing improves on Libanais. Their Beirut-style hummus and baba are excellent as is their muhammara. The kebabs and shawarmas are excellent. Their mana'esh is a perfect snack food. And it says a lot when, as an avowed carnivore, the dish that I crave the most is their cauliflower stew with moudardara, really great combination of flavors and textures.
  • Post #32 - May 27th, 2020, 7:42 pm
    Post #32 - May 27th, 2020, 7:42 pm Post #32 - May 27th, 2020, 7:42 pm
    Vital Information wrote:
    boudreaulicious wrote:And since I have to go to Skokie in the afternoon (from NWI where there is NO middle eastern food—good, bad or otherwise!), thank you for the reminder about this location—I think I’ll stop and get some takeout for my Chicago-restaurant-fridge/freezer :)!


    Jen, isn't Bridgeview (area) not that hard to get via 294? Fattoush is a only a few blocks from the 95th exit. If you don't want that, there's Oozi and if you don't want that there's the original AB, which seems to me, at least based on this thread, a lot better --for me, AB's still 3rd after the 2 cited above, but a medalist all the same. On top of those 3 restaurants, there are a plethora of places both explored and not, bakeries, stores, etc.


    I am just not out and about that much these days, and while I love AB Bridgview, that’s still a 100 miles round trip for me from Valpo.

    I didn’t end up getting there when I was in Skokie Last weekend, but the oldest is supposedly playing for a college ball summer baseball team out of Midlothian this summer, so hoping they play AND that I’ll be able to pop over to ABB before or after a game!!
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #33 - May 27th, 2020, 7:54 pm
    Post #33 - May 27th, 2020, 7:54 pm Post #33 - May 27th, 2020, 7:54 pm
    spinynorman99 wrote:
    boudreaulicious wrote:I’ll take AB’s baba, muthuwama, tabouli, hummus with beef shawarma, falafel, pickles, eggplant with tomato, and chicken shawarma sandwich over pretty much any other place in town.


    And that's where our paths diverge. While I certainly enjoyed my meal, nothing improves on Libanais. Their Beirut-style hummus and baba are excellent as is their muhammara. The kebabs and shawarmas are excellent. Their mana'esh is a perfect snack food. And it says a lot when, as an avowed carnivore, the dish that I crave the most is their cauliflower stew with moudardara, really great combination of flavors and textures.


    Libanais has been on my list to try and, damn, if I wasn’t less than a mile away at NYB&B after my plant pick up last Saturday. Next time!!
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #34 - October 24th, 2020, 7:03 pm
    Post #34 - October 24th, 2020, 7:03 pm Post #34 - October 24th, 2020, 7:03 pm
    Another great meal, great service.
    They have a tent out front, we were the only ones using it for 2/3 of our dinner, so got two heaters.

    Lots of attention, especially for being the only ones out there, several people tried to take our orders, etc. Meanwhile through the windows we could see the inside was full to capacity.

    Kibbeh are smaller, smoother than Pita Inn's, tasty and very crisp.

    Complimentary pickles, eggplant dip and zaatar bread were very nice.

    Mint tea worked well on this chilly evening.

    Lamb chops were very thin and charred perfectly, with a huge pile of rice that may have had chile powder, there was a little side to it.

    Kufta casserole with tahini and tomato was extremely rich: probably more than 8oz of ground beef and lamb in a bit burger shape smothered with pinkish sauce with stuffed potatoes, and a big pile of yellow rice.

    Kinafa comes out as a big disk, hot out of the oven. It's almost like a sweet saganaki: stretchy cheese, crispy shredded phyllo and chopped nuts, sugar syrup. It's $14 but serves 4 easily.

    We've got a couple meals worth of leftovers (mostly rice) and just under half the kinafa.

    Definitely will be back.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #35 - November 9th, 2020, 10:54 am
    Post #35 - November 9th, 2020, 10:54 am Post #35 - November 9th, 2020, 10:54 am
    I'm nowhere near eating or drinking inside yet (including fully enclosed tents). But I get tired of my own cooking and do takeout.

    Ordered a completely delicious chicken shawarma sandwich from Al Bawadi yesterday. Seriously, one of the best things I've eaten lately. My order wasn't ready yet, so I mostly waited outside, with occasional checks inside for my sandwich. While waiting I observed:

    2 unmasked customers waiting for takeout outside who never masked up, even when they went into the building for food

    One member of the kitchen prep line wearing a chin mask.

    3 members of the male costumed hospitality staff with no masks in sight.

    I enjoyed the taste of my sandwich, but the environment was uncomfortable. The virus spread is on the uptick again.

    I'm going to have to improve my home cooking game. Thank goodness we're entering soup season.

    Giovanna.
    =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=

    "Enjoy every sandwich."

    -Warren Zevon
  • Post #36 - November 9th, 2020, 11:18 am
    Post #36 - November 9th, 2020, 11:18 am Post #36 - November 9th, 2020, 11:18 am
    Giovanna wrote:I enjoyed the taste of my sandwich, but the environment was uncomfortable. The virus spread is on the uptick again.

    I'm going to have to improve my home cooking game.


    My problem with eating at home is that the asshole who cooks the stuff doesn’t wear a mask either. :(
  • Post #37 - November 9th, 2020, 11:36 am
    Post #37 - November 9th, 2020, 11:36 am Post #37 - November 9th, 2020, 11:36 am
    cilantro wrote:My problem with eating at home is that the asshole who cooks the stuff doesn’t wear a mask either. :(

    Same here. Plus no gloves. He does wash his hands and clean up after himself, though he’s butt ugly.
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #38 - November 9th, 2020, 11:39 am
    Post #38 - November 9th, 2020, 11:39 am Post #38 - November 9th, 2020, 11:39 am
    The jamoke at my house doesn't wear masks or gloves once she returns to the fortress of solitude and scrubbs up her hands really well.

    OTOH, I know where she's been and what precautions she's been taking :?

    Giovanna.
    =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=

    "Enjoy every sandwich."

    -Warren Zevon
  • Post #39 - March 24th, 2021, 11:59 am
    Post #39 - March 24th, 2021, 11:59 am Post #39 - March 24th, 2021, 11:59 am
    My first dine-in restaurant meal in 375 days was lunch yesterday at Al Bawadi Niles. It was virtually empty. I think our 4-top was one of only two occupied tables at around 12:30.

    I ordered the hummus with topped with mixed shawarma, and my co-workers and I shared the muthawama, which I'd never had before. That was kind of like a fluffier, Palestinian take on Skordalia. I was surprised to learn from our server that it's dairy-free, made with egg whites -- plus potatoes, and lots of garlic. I figured, based on how tangy it was, that it was yogurt-based. Guessing the tangyness was from lemon.

    Hummus + Shawarma was good. I prefer my hummus a bit creamier but it pretty much hit the spot. Chicken shawarma was fairly juicy and better than the beef, which was a bit dryer.

    It felt good but also a bit unsettling to be dining in a restaurant again.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #40 - March 24th, 2021, 4:01 pm
    Post #40 - March 24th, 2021, 4:01 pm Post #40 - March 24th, 2021, 4:01 pm
    More and more I think that chicken shawarma is the better shawarma.

    How was the masking situation?

    I got some takeout from there about 3 weeks ago and the mask usage was even worse than it was when I bitched about it in November. I was so steamed that I filed a complaint with the village of Niles [altho nothing has come of that].

    I like their food [what I remember of the Bridgeview location I think the food was better there] but it's not like the Niles area is lacking in Middle Eastern choices. I'm off them for the forseeable future.

    Giovanna
    =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=

    "Enjoy every sandwich."

    -Warren Zevon
  • Post #41 - March 24th, 2021, 5:53 pm
    Post #41 - March 24th, 2021, 5:53 pm Post #41 - March 24th, 2021, 5:53 pm
    Giovanna wrote:How was the masking situation?

    It was fine. I didn't peer into the kitchen but our server and the one other employee with whom I interacted were masked at all times.

    =R=
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #42 - March 25th, 2021, 6:58 am
    Post #42 - March 25th, 2021, 6:58 am Post #42 - March 25th, 2021, 6:58 am
    Giovanna wrote:More and more I think that chicken shawarma is the better shawarma.


    While totally unscientific, any time I visit a new (to me) place that offers both I'll ask the person taking my order which is better. "Chicken" is almost always the answer. It's a rare place that does beef/lamb on a spit well.

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