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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Middle Eastern, Greek
Counter service

Mon–Sat 11:00am–8:00pm

Features Veg-friendly
Bar Beer, wine, BYO
Credit cards Visa, MC


5901 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, TX
(713) 977-7676
Zabak’s Mediterranean Grill
Cheap and decent sumac-sprinkled comfort food

First, let’s dispel a myth: Zabak’s is not the best Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean food in town. Not by a long shot. It’s easy to be convinced now and then, especially on a good day, when the falafel is properly crisp on the outside and fluffy green inside from jalapeños—but sometimes, it’s got a reheated, tough texture. Its generous coating of sumac is definitely appealing, and the pita’s terrific; on a gyro, zippy tzatziki’s lively and fresh-tasting, but the meat’s just okay (it’s the flat, dryish standard stuff). Chicken shawarma has had a grayish look the last few visits, and its tahini comes regrettably watery.

Baba ghanoush and hummus are reliable, though, and the price and vibe are totally lovable—like, ridiculously cheap. Especially if you bring your own wine (you’re allowed, for a small upcharge); we would steer clear of the wine and beer on offer here—it’s a little counter café, so that hardly counts against them.

And it’s slightly modern inside, and clean and bright, but we honestly have much better experiences in this cuisine type from the backs of dingy markets and in fluorescent-lit dives. Still, it’s hard to find a good, filling, casual stop in the Galleria, and this is certainly one of them. Especially on that falafel’s good days.

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