Monday, May 3, 2010

In Search of Monday Lunch: Mona's Cafe

Today's suggestion for Monday lunch is inspired by The Folk Singer's favorite snack from this past weekend at Jazz Fest, where a falafel sandwich made for perfect snacking during Pearl Jam. It was like 1995 all over again....

Mona's on Banks Street is a deceptively short drive from the CBD, where the only place to snag some shawarma is Sir Gyro's in the Place St. Charles Food Court. While the Mona's lacks the salutation, her gyro is a cut above most others. The thick slices of ground lamb and beef are given a nice crust from the flat top griddle and then rolled up in pita bread for a cheap and filling $7 sandwich.

Mona's has a few quirks in their salads. Instead of olive oil and lemon juice, salads are dressed with more of a traditional Italian-style dressing with lots of herbs. (I prefer the former.) Feta cheese and olives are sometimes omitted from the mix unless specifically asked for. Just a few peccadilloes which matter to some more than others.

The thick yogurt dip known as lebna is not to be missed, as is the refreshing tabouli salad. The best way to sample those selections (and many more) is the Mona's Special Appetizer, which also includes hummus, baba ganoush, grape leaves, kibby and falafel. Large enough for 2; tasty enough that sharing may not be an option.

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