Banzobar Reverses Its Name, Raises Prices

Last summer, Barbanzo opened in Midtown East, serving average falafel/hummus/shwarma fare. Chris tried the falafel platter back in August and reported back without much enthusuasm. I was walking by recently and noticed that the name had changed to Banzobar (I actually had to read it a few times to make sure it wasn’t my eyes playing tricks on me), so I went in to see if anything else had changed.

Well, the prices went up. The majority of the platter options and a few of the sandwich options are now above our $10 ML price limit. Boo, hiss. I settled on a chicken shwarma pita with all the fixins. Unlimited toppings are included in the prices, so, there’s that.

So it’s partially my fault for getting everything on it, but this sandwich was a mess. All of the toppings were just thrown in there haphazardly, so some bites were all chickpea or all pickle, and everything was dripping out of the sides of the pita. It was absurdly difficult to eat and not a sexy sandwich by any means.

That being said, it was very tasty and extremely filling. All in all it contained chicken, chickpeas, hummus, onions, pickles, feta, lettuce, tomato, cucumber, tzatziki, and hot sauce. The chicken was moist and well-seasoned (I detected some cumin notes in there, among other things), with some nice char here and there from the spit.

Basically, this was a average-to-pretty-good Mediterranean lunch, but I’ll probably be sticking to Omar’s and Soom Soom for my neighborhood fix for the time being.

Banzobar, 969 3rd Ave (at 58th st); 212-317-1900


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    Dunno why anyone would eat here rather than Soom Soom. Especially at those prices. I would reverse the prices here with Soom Soom’s and still choose SS!

  • lol i readed dat sign as chick peanas lolz i woz lyk whut da?

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    I work around the corner and totally agree that the walk to Omar’s or Soom Soom is worth it. The falafel was very good the first time I tried it but very meh the next few times.

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