Thursday, April 11, 2013

Pita Inn

Location: 3910 Dempster St., Skokie, IL 60076 or 9854 Milwaukee Ave., Des Plaines, IL 60016
Pita Inn on Urbanspoon Pita Inn on Urbanspoon

A Quick Word:
My first experience with falafel or Middle Eastern/Mediterranean food as whole was at Pita Inn in Skokie.  One of my buddies brought me here and immediately I was hooked.  The restaurant isn't the most decorated or own the comfiest chairs, but they do serve incredible food at a cheap price.  Most of the large dinners, if not all, are under $10 per plate with their sandwiches ranging in the $4 level.  But besides their delicious food, they are home to, in my opinion, the BEST HOT SAUCE in Chicagoland area.  One huge problem, however, is the distance from downtown Chicago.  My friends and I make the trek rarely because it takes easily 20 minutes if not double or triple (in traffic).  Because of its location, I couldn't rate it higher than 4 miles... but I would, without question, walk more than 5 miles for their hot sauce.

What We Ate:

Falafel Sandwich

This is definitely the best deal at Pita Inn.  The Falafel Sandwich costs only about $3.50 and is enough for a meal.  The sandwich is served inside a whole pita stuffed with lettuce, tomato, tahini sauce, and of course the falafel.  The fried chick pea patties are crispy on the outside, yet retain a soft interior.  Definitely add the hot sauce to this sandwich and it will make an incredible meal.  I used to order two or three of these for take home even after having a meal at the restaurant.  But of course, they are better when everything is fresh.  A must have!

Chicken Shawarma Dinner

After going through the extensive menu, I decided on the Chicken Shawarma.  The entree portion comes with the shawarma on a bed of yellow rice, a small side salad, and pita.  I have been here many times and always love this dish, but getting it "to go" may be detrimental.  First of all, the chicken was dry.  They do give a generous portion, but it needs to be drowned in the red hot sauce for it to regain some moisture.  The rice was a little disappointing as well.  It wasn't well seasoned... if seasoned at all.  The vegetables were fresh and the chicken was nicely spiced.  I suggest making a sandwich using the pita.  They said it is homemade... but it is definitely NOT as good as Naf Naf Grill's pita.  When concerning the portion size, it is very filling, but it does NOT come close to Sultan's Market portion.

Hot Sauce

If you love spicy food with amazing chili flavor, then this hot sauce is for you.  It is my favorite in the entire city and I wish other places could offer it.  The hot sauce is made from several chilies and is the perfect spiciness.  It will make you sweat without killing all of your taste buds.  Each meal comes with the hot sauce, but if you want extra hot sauce for home... you can purchase a small container for $1.50 or a huge one for $5.00.  It is definitely worth it.  Freeze some, keep some in the fridge, and you will find yourself putting this hot sauce on everything.  It is that amazing!

The DOs/DON'Ts:
- Ask for extra hot sauce (the red one).  It is incredible...
- Plenty of parking... because these restaurants are in the suburbs.

- I am not as big as a fan of this restaurant when you order take out.  It just isn't the same.

How far would I walk for this food?



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