If you step off the main thoroughfares, the blocks around the M and E trains stop on Lexington Ave./53rd St. hold plenty of hidden
deliciousness. You might have to wait in line at this small shop, but it’ll be for good reason.
Egyptian native Omar Abouzaid has had several successful New York City careers since he moved to the States in the late 1970s. He cooked in a Middle Eastern restaurant, ran a wholesale bakery in Queens and for more than two decades he has co-owned Cowgirl Catering at 53rd and Third.
Then in the early 2010s, came Omar’s Place (a.k.a. Omar’s Kitchen and Bakery). It shortly became one of the local favorites and even got profiled in The Daily News.
The famous lamb kofta kabob laced with more than a dozen spices, rich hummus drizzled with bright green olive oil, roasted eggplant with cilantro and basil, or sweetly spiced rice pilaf, all now served at Omar’s Mediterranean Cuisine.
Now customers line up for lunch at 11:15 a.m., drawn by the scent of hundreds of pounds of marinated chicken shawarma roasting on two massive spits. It’s served on a platter with two sides or tucked into a pillowy pita, and is fantastic. Slathered with Abouzaid’s housemade sauces: garlic mayo, tahini and a bright orange hot sauce.
Enjoy the deliciousness, to stay or to go.