28 March 2013

Minneapolis: Wally's Falafel and Hummus

About one million grillion years ago, when I was in grad school at the U, my stellar fellow cohortian (totally a word that we made up) Betsy told me about this place in Dinkytown.  It was a magical place where you could get mountains of delicious, delicious Middle-Eastern food for dirt cheap.  I thought, "I want to go to there."  Then I just didn't go there, because everyone else in the cohort kept wanting to go to Potbelly, Qdoba, and Tony's, for some reason.  The first two were great, just like my fellow cohortians (still totally a word).  But eugh.  Tony's.  Don't even EVER go there.

Matt and I finally decided to visit Wally's.  You should always go to there.  (I'm turning into Liz Lemon?)

Wally's Falafel and Hummus
423 14th Ave SE
Minneapolis, MN 55414
(612) 746-4776

Betsy was so right.  This place is incredible.  We spent $17 to share a thousand-course meal.  Check it out.

First you order at the counter.  Then you sit down and one of the staff will bring your food out to you.  Eat it.  And bus your dishes.  If you can still walk after stuffing yourself silly.

The Veggie Samosas will set you back $5.  They come out of a frozen box, but goddammit they're good.  You know, every once in a while there will be something frozen that, once reheated, makes you completely forget that a little old lady didn't make this in her kitchen in some faraway country?  This is one of those things.  Skip the yogurt sauce in the middle, but the 'mosas are stuffed with ground chickpeas, onions, peas, chili peppers, and yummy Indian-ish curry flavor.  Somehow, they are 100% vegan.

Only thing is, they're a little tiny.  You get 6 of 'em, but they're only each about the size of a big ravioli.

The Mediterranean Vegetarian Plate for $10 had everything we wanted: fries, falafel, tabouleh, hummus, fried veggies, and pita.

On the bottom left, you can see some lemony fresh tabouleh underneath the surprisingly tasty, hot, salty fries.  Some of the falafel is on the bottom, to the right of the tabouleh.  No joke: this may very well be the best falafel I've ever had.  It was moist inside but full of flavor, and nice and crispy on the outside.  The fried cauliflower, eggplant and zucchini are on the right, and see how nice and brown they are?  That's not batter, that's just pure vegan fried veg.  The eggplant is, just.  Wowie.  Melty and amazing.  Cauliflower and zucchini are less amazing, but still pretty fab.  Above those guys is the hummus.  It has a lovely, addicting flavor - light and tangy, kind of like Holy Land's.  (And we all know how I feel about Holy Land hummus.  It makes me wish my mouth were a vacuum cleaner.)

Then: Baklava!  For $2.  It's a totally vegan adorable little triangle of phyllo dough, oil, walnuts, pistachios, and rosewater syrup.  The cinnamon flavor is stellar, and the overall affect is kind of cerealy.  You know, like Cinnamon Toast Crunch.  The lightness of the pastry is complemented well by the dense nuts.  And it was pretty sweet.  Matt did a majority of the damage on that little beaut.

Dinkytown has a few more gems.  I'll tell you all about them if I can find good parking spots.  But I won't be telling you about Tony's, unless I'm telling you how much I hate it.  Seriously.  How greasy do fries need to be?  Apparently, the answer is: as greasy as a stick of lumpy, yellow, melting butter.

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