My search for the best falafel in New York continues….
New York City is the city that never sleeps, but certain neighborhoods are definitely more nocturnal than others. Williamsburg, Brooklyn is one of those neighborhoods that’s up all night. Back in the day, it’s where I would meet up with my friends starting at 10 or 11pm. Nowadays I find myself there in the morning (on the way to give a tour) more often than after hours.
I’ve always heard about Oasis being an incredibly affordable joint to grab some good falafel at the wee hours of the morning. For some in Williamsburg, when I arrived at 11am on a Saturday, it was no doubt still the wee hours of the morning. They were just opening the metal gates when I came along attempting to get an early morning falafel. Who knew I was such a morning person? Remember, this was 11am!
There was something a little exciting about being the first customer of the day (although I didn’t win any prize). If falafel here ever ends up sitting around, I wouldn’t experience it. This would be the freshest of the fresh.
One thing Oasis has going for it is their price tag. At $3, this is the cheapest falafel sandwich I have encountered so far. And while not everything was prefect here, I do think I got my money’s worth in terms of quantity.
The sandwich was stuffed to the brim, but no further. Strangely, this pita had an empty flap on top that might have been used to keep the fillings from spilling out, but this area of pita was barren and seemingly pointless.
Inside, the fillings flowed – including onions, cabbage, lettuce, and a few large pickle spears. There was an overabundance of white tahini sauce, which kept any potential dryness at bay. And the vegetables were seasoned with a surprising amount of black pepper (the lettuce was peppery!!) which made me wonder if they were covering up for low quality ingredients. Or my early morning tastebuds were overly sensitive.
The falafel was quite good though. The first few bites of the pattys were hot and crisp with a nice juxtaposition of textures. It did cool a bit and the crunch wasn’t as prevalent, but the peppery, earthy flavors remained consistent.
I can totally see why this is food one would want to eat late at night, especially after a night of imbibing. The food is relatively tasty, extraordinarily cheap, and very convenient to the Bedford stop on the L train. And while the falafel is fresh at 11am, I can only imagine it tastes twice as good at 3am.
Does Oasis have the best falafel in NY? The fritters themselves were pretty solid, but I was disappointed by the pepperiness of the additional ingredients and the lackluster pita bread. A lunch tasting earns these a 7 out of 10, but a late night tasting might be much higher.
|161 North 7th Street (at Bedford Avenue),