sajj.....yes, it is like chipotle for mediterranean food
**Surprise! Those later hours didn't last long. They are back to 11-3pm during the week only. They must be doing a booming catering business if they can survive on such short time. We will see**
**And as if right on cue, they are now open 11-8pm daily during the week, just in time for baseball season! I think I called that one. No weekend hours during games yet, we'll see how long that lasts. We will also see if they keep up the later hours too**
As one place moves out, another one moves in. The space wasn't even cold! Merigan Sub Shop and their $15 sandwiches closed and decided they couldn't make a go of it. A month later Sajj takes their place, serving falafel and shawarma. I wasn't the biggest fan of Merigan, did like their breakfast options, but too pricey for me otherwise. So when I saw the place re-opening, I was happy to see another easy, quick option in my hood which has a dearth of choices past lunchtime.
Of course, when they did finally open, they crushed my dreams as they are only open M-F 11-3pm. I mean WTF! Those are worse than bankers hours! Ugh. Still, I wanted to give them a try to see if they were any good.
Walking in, they haven't really changed the place around much, same concrete and metal industrial thing going on. A quick look around shows me right away, they have the whole Chipotle model set up going on. This place is doing it the Mediterranean way, with falafels, shawarma and such. Okay, I'll play along.
Instead of burrito or bowl, it's wrap, pita or bowl. From there, choices are falafel, chicken, steak or a meat falafel combo. For numbers, that's $9, $10, $11 and $12. Mmm, kind of borders on the pricey edge for a lunch for me. We just got rid of one pricey spot, does it have to be replaced with another? I'm gonna soldier on and get a wrap and a bowl and see what the SO thinks too.
Definitely a colorful but messy bowl. Though, one thing to note, the goat cheese as a topping was like a buck extra, which I didn't know. As a salad it was good. As an almost $13 bowl, eh. All the greens on the bottom make it seem like you are getting more than you actually are. Oddly enough, even with all you see, it was a little light on flavor. By that, I mean seasoning. Desperately needed something to make it more exciting, like the hot sauce I ended up sprinkling over it. I did like the roasted eggplant, but there was just a dollop of it so it was short lived. The chicken was overdone and more of a crumble than chunks. Yeah, I know, it is just a salad, but I liked the one at Eatsa better.
I actually like a good falafel. I mean, it is deep fried, how could I not? I tried to get as many toppings added as the wrap would hold, sans the feta this time. It is about the size of a standard burrito, I think the one from Gyro King is bigger--and I'm gonna say better. This was okay though the falafels tasted odd. Like the grease they were fried in was old. I mean, they've been open a couple months, surely they have changed the oil a couple times, right? Overall, I was just unimpressed for something that comes close to $10 with tax. While the one at Gyro King is about the same price, at least you get a small side of fries with it if you eat in. The SO said it was fine, after they had slathered sriracha on it. Sure, that will help hide any odd flavors, though by that time, it was already on my tongue and I couldn't get past it.
Oh well, it was worth a shot but in the end, it is another pricey lunch spot that only seems interested in neighborhood work crowd, not those of us who live here. I'm sure when baseball season starts, they will be open a little later for them too. Though high prices and catering to lunch and ball crowds didn't work out so well for the previous tenant, we will see if it works for this one. They actually have a couple of other locations in the Bay Area and do catering, so it is possible. I will just pretend they aren't even there, the same way the seem to have forgotten people actually live in SOMA/South Beach and not just pass through.