While Mozy’s has the best shawarma, it’s sadly unfeasible to drive to Waterloo for lunch. Luckily I was introduced to Pita Golden Pocket (PGP) by co-workers, who are fervent fans of the shawarma at this restaurant hidden in the dingy strip malls of Vaughan.
Who needs a menu, when there’s a rotating spit of chicken?
PGP’s menu is displayed prominently above the counter, offering selections ranging from Caesar salad to “schintzel”. Despite their variety of offerings, I have only ever seen a customer order a non-shawarma option once (soup and a falafel wrap). The standard order at PGP is their chicken shawarma, in a wrap or on a plate.
PGP’s Shawarma: Mounds of meat, vegetables, and sauce, ready to be wrapped
Similar to Burger Priest and (former) Goody’s burgers, there are different approaches to shawarma. Mozy’s full flavour is fairly minimalist, focusing on a few ingredients. PGP’s shawarma takes the opposite approach, with a wide selection of available toppings which they mound generously into each wrap, resulting in a shawarma the size of a large burrito (or which my co-workers describe as “the size of your arm!”).
Sliced in half for easy sharing
With their mountain of meat, PGP’s variety of pickles, peppers, lettuce, onions and tomato are a must to balance out their meat-heavy wrap. The sauces available are garlic sauce, hummus, homemade hot sauce, and a “mango” sauce. Their hot sauce adds flavour as well as spice, and 3 lines are recommended for a decently spicy wrap. Their mango sauce is an interesting blend of (what we guess is) sour mango, mustard and curry spices, and should not be missed. Some even prefer to get the mango sauce on the side as a dipping sauce!
Neatly dissected shawarma, mango sauce, and a sample of pita chips
PGP’s hefty shawarama is well worth the 7.99 cost, for the fresh ingredients and friendly service at this mom and pop shop. In addition to the tasty food, small things make PGP stand out – giving out samples of chicken to the lunch rush line, and providing a tab for easy unravelling of the shawarma. Unfortunately, the family run PGP are only open Monday to Friday, but are definitely worth the trek on a day off.
Many thanks to P for taking all the photos (I was too busy eating)!