Late last month, Shawarma Stackz celebrated their grand opening in the Ridge at Creekside shopping center, across from the Westfield Galleria, in Roseville, CA with a "Buy One, Get One Free" special on their Middle Eastern "street food" entrees and specials. Somehow, I missed out on their grand opening, along with the advertised specials, but when the offer popped up on their Facebook page, it was time for me to make up for lost time.
As with all restaurant reviews I publish, I have no affiliation with the restaurant reviewed, and there is no monetary gain on my part, as I am simply a person who likes to eat, and I love to write-up, and publish my dining experiences.
Photo: It's just past 11:00 o'clock in the morning on Saturday, February 12, 2022, and I've arrived to "open up" Shawarma Stackz and enjoy a delicious lunch. The restaurant is very new, having just opened for business on January 29th, two weeks before today. Somehow I missed hearing about the grand opening.
Shawarma Stackz is located in an upscale shopping center, and features lots of free, convenient and safe parking.
Photo: As you enter the restaurant, you'll be greeted by the menu, with is displayed on the wall by three HUGE pages. Actually, the restaurant's menu is quite compact, and limited to a few selections, but the posted pages on the wall are GIGANTIC. If you look ahead, you can see the baker's station, and the slogan of the restaurant, "Shawarma For the People By the People." The order window is just around the corner, past the baker's station.
As you gaze at the large menus, after deciding what you want to order, there are two touch screen on the wall, where you can place your order, and pay for it with your credit card, if you don't want to order at the order window, or if you prefer "no contact" ordering.
Photo: The dining room is very large, spacious, spotlessly clean, and brand new. Most of the longer tables near the window are marked as reserved for handicapped guests, but there is plenty of comfortable seating for everybody. As I "opened up" the restaurant on this Saturday morning, for a few minutes, I had the large dining room all to myself.
Photo: The center of the dining room features high tables and bar stools, mounted to the floor. As you enjoy your meal, you can look across the dining room and watch the talented staff working in the open kitchen.
Photo: The restaurant uses Stubborn Soda machine, which is a "first" in Roseville, and western Placer County. Stubborn Soda is a brand of "craft" soda that appeared on the marketplace back in 2015, and Shawarma Stackz is the first, and of this writing, the only restaurant in Roseville that carries this brand.
Photo: The complete menu is very compact, but offers many options. The complete menu is posted on one board above the order window, and on three separate boards as you enter the restaurant. It's simple and very straightforward, but if you're not familiar with Middle Eastern cuisine, all you have to do is to ask one of the friendly staff who will be glad to answer your questions and help you decide what you want to order. The menu is colorful and attractive, but I feel it would be easier to read if it had more contrast.
There are printed menus near the order counter, and the menu is posted online, on the restaurant's web site.
Photo: When you place your order, you'll be greeted by super friendly Andrea, who be happy to answer any questions you have about the restaurant, the menu, or the Middle Eastern "street food" options that the menu offers. Behind her, one of the staff is carving a piece of steak from one of the vertical rotisseries.
Placing your order at Shawarma Stackz works like a fast food restaurant, in that you make your selection from the menu, which is posted above the order counter - and elsewhere - pay for your order, and receive a receipt. You choose any open table, and when your order is ready, your name will be called, and you'll pick up your order at the order pick-up window.
There are many ways to place your order, as you can order from friendly Andrea, use a touch screen at the front of the restaurant, order online from the restaurant's web site, or phone in your order. If you place a "remote" order, it will be bagged "to-go" at the order pick-up window. Since I prefer to dine "in," I requested my order be placed on a tray.
After I placed my order, I was ready to watch the staff in action, preparing the wonderful Middle Eastern cuisine I was about to enjoy...
Photo: Orders begin with a fresh-baked pita, which is baked in-house at the baker's station. You can watch the baker at work, as she mixes the dough, places it in the oven, and remove the baked pitas from the oven and place them on the rack, ready for shawarmas. The smell of baking bread is simply heavenly, and fills the entire restaurant.
Photo: Steak for shawarmas is grilled, Middle Eastern style, over vertical rotisseries, and the staff cuts of slices, as needed to make your entree. You know the meat is fresh!
Photo: Your shawarma is assembled at the open kitchen, where you can watch the talented staff at work. The sliced meat, along with the pita, arrive at the assembly station, where your order is put together. The fries and the falafels are deep fried as the shawarmas are assembled, as the timing assures that your order is super fresh and delicious when you pick it up.
Photo: When you dine "in," your order arrives wrapped in paper, placed inside a little yellow plastic baskets, on a tray, to make it easy to carry to your table. When you're finished, you're asked to PLEASE DON'T THROW the basket away, by this hilarious sign, who presents the basked as a "missing person" in a police report.
I got a HUGE laugh reading this, but it really makes sense not to needlessly toss the basket in the trash, as it just burdens the restaurant with an unneeded expense and puts more stress on the local landfill.
Photo: After about 20 minutes after I'd placed my order, my name was called at the order pick-up end of the counter. The friendly gentleman at the counter asked me to check to make sure that my order was correct, and it was exactly as I'd ordered. Shawarma Stackz takes pride in great customer service.
After picking up my order, I stat at a table by the window, got out my camera, and got to work...
Photo: I'm a happy guy, as I pose with my lunch of Middle Eastern "street food," ready to enjoy on this late Saturday morning.
Photo: "The Esquire" and "The O.G. Pita," side of fries, along with the "Three Piece Falafel," which came with a house-baked pita. You'd have to be "Ironman" to eat all of this goodness for lunch! One entree and one side makes a satisfying and filling lunch, but I was getting the second entree for free, and it seemed like a great idea to enjoy a side with it.
The entrees were wrapped in paper and placed in the do-not-throw-in-the-trash yellow baskets, the "Falavels" were on a little plastic tray, and the fries and baked pita were wrapped in paper. The entire order was placed on two aluminum trays, which was very practical, and made for easy handling.
Photo: "The Esquire" and "O.G. Pita" sandwiches, "Three Piece Falafel," the side of "French Fries" and the house-baked pita, along with the "Tahini" house-made dipping sauce, ready to enjoy for today's lunch. The difficult question was, which pita to eat now, and which one to bring home and enjoy for tonight's dinner?
Photo: From the "Stackz Originalz" section of the menu, I went with a "The O.G. Pita" and a "The Esquire" for my entrees. Each of these pitas is a meal by itself, but how could I pass up the "Buy one get one free" offer? I savored the "OG" for today's lunch and brought home the "Esquire" for dinner.
Both of these amazing shawarma sandwiches begin with a large, super fresh, in-house made pita pocket. You know the pita pocket is fresh, as when you placed your order, you were treated to watching the staff make the dough, bake the bread, and remove from the oven. Both sandwiches were stuffed with lots of lettuce, parsley mix, Roma tomatoes, pickled cucumber and garnished with garlic and zesty tahini sauce. Unlike the "O.G.," the "Esquire" was stuffed with French fries, as per the norm, on the streets of many Middle Eastern cities.
The "Esquire" shawarma was stuffed with marinated, grilled chicken, and the "O.G.," which the menu says was inspired by the original Syrian style of shawarma was stuffed with grilled steak. Both the chicken and steak were grilled using the vertical rotisserie, the way meat is grilled in the Middle East.
These sandwiches are BIG, juicy, delicious, and completely stuffed with amazing meat, veggies and sauce! The many, complex flavors mingle together, and create a taste sensation. I've never had the pleasure of visiting Syria or Lebanon, but as I bit into each of these delicious sandwiches, I closed my eyes and imagined that I was enjoying "street food" during a visit to a Middle Eastern city.
Note that you'd have to be a lumberjack or a linebacker to eat two of these massive entrees, as they are BIG! I couldn't resist the "Free Entree" offer that enticed me into the restaurant, and I brought the "Esquire" home with me to enjoy for dinner.
Photo: From the "Sidez" section of the menu, I ordered a side of fries, and from the "Munchiez" section, I sent with "Three Piece Falafel." My dipping sauce, from the "House-Made Saucez" section, was "Tahini," which the menu advertises as "Our signature sesame seed based sauce." The order of "Falafel" came with a slice of house-baked pita bread.
I cut one of the "Falafels" in half so I could see all of the goodness. The menu advertises the "Falafel" as, "No prepackaged mixes, just Grandma's recipes. Ground fava beans, veggies, herbs, and spices." You can request your "Falafel" deep fried, but I chose it the way Grandma intended it to be. I absolutely enjoyed the delicious "Falafel!"
French fries play a large role in Middle Eastern "street cuisine" so I sent with a side order of fries to round out my delicious lunch. The fries were simply delicious, as they were fried to a light, golden brown, and were on the "soft, wiggly" side, which is a rarity in fries, as most are fried hard, crunchy and dark, golden brown. The fries were lightly salted "just right" for my taste and really made for a great side to my delicious lunch. You can't go wrong with an order of French fries from Shawarma Stackz.
Shawarma Stackz serves delicious, authentic Middle Eastern "street food" cuisine, and seems to have found a "niche" in the Roseville dining scene, as there is no other restaurant like Shawarma in town. You'll love the delicious food, the comfortable dining room, along with the fast, friendly service of the efficient staff.
When you're in the mood to enjoy the cuisine of the Middle East, without leaving Roseville, Shawarma Stackz is your ticket to fine eating.
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