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Restaurants

King David Earns Its Crown

Posted by Chris Orbz / Reviewed on May 30, 2007 / review policy

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Falafels are the ideal fast food. They're quick, cheap and satisfying with a delicious and balanced mix of produce and protein. In theory.

I was introduced to them when I moved to Wilson Heights. The local falafel retailer was King David, and I assumed it was a fairly standard falafel joint.

However, once I developed a taste for falafels and sought them out across the city, I began to realize something: In terms of both quality and value, King David makes - hands down - the best falafels in town.

Now, I do recognize that everyone who's ever eaten a pita will tell you that some place or other is "definitely the best in town," but frankly, most of those people don't know what they're talking about.

Anyone who tells you that the best falafels in town are from somewhere that mushes stale, pre-made falafel balls into a thin, ripped pita with dead lettuce and half a slice of tomato and then charges you extra for hummus really doesn't have a clue.

While a good falafel should be something one could eat all day, every day and feel good for doing so, most falafels in Toronto are, sadly, overpriced stomach-churning grease pockets.

King David is an absolute oasis in the bleak landscape of Toronto falafels.

The pitas are of the highest quality, the falafel balls always fresh to order, the dressings exquisite and the sandwiches stuffed with your choice of an array of different toppings. Be clear about your choices from the start, though, because once they start stuffing they won't leave room for adjustments.

A King David trademark is the napkin on top. The falafels are packed so full that they sacrifice a napkin just to make sure everything stays inside.

Discussion

15 Comments

adam / May 30, 2007 at 09:33 pm
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Sounds yummy, I'll have to give it a go. I'd also recommend Ghazali's on bloor btwn Spadina and Bathurst. Yummmy !
jim / May 30, 2007 at 09:55 pm
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makes me want to have a falafel right now! thanks for the pointer in the right direction. jim
kd / May 30, 2007 at 10:13 pm
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Yeah, but it's all the way in North York. Way too far outside my bubble...
What would readers recommend downtown?
Safari647 / May 30, 2007 at 10:55 pm
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Sounds good, I'd check it out.. good thing I actually go into that end of the city. After a quick google I realized that somepeople might get lost on wilmington trying to get a falafel. and might end up in Jane & Finch.. lol
Chris Orbz / May 31, 2007 at 12:42 am
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Well, it might be geographically closer to Jane & Finch than Yonge & Bloor, the areas are very dissimilar owing to the Downsview park / industrial area separation. The 401 and Allen expressway reach pretty close to this location, and TTC-wise the Faywood bus from Wilson station stops right outside, so it's more accessible than it may seem.
Disparishun / May 31, 2007 at 05:17 am
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Yeah, not really very convenient for downtown dwellers -- but kudos to BlogTO for acknowledging the bigger city and thinking outside the bubble.
Tamara / May 31, 2007 at 04:09 pm
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If it's too far north for anyone, they have another location just south of Bathurst and Lawrence. They make amazing pizza also!
lori* / May 31, 2007 at 08:45 pm
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oh man.... the first place i ever had a falafel and i haven't had one in years! now i have this irritating urge to go to wilson station....
Michael Goodbaum / May 31, 2007 at 09:08 pm
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The King Davids Falafel on Bathurst is also quite good. I must say though that it is not the best falafel in the city. That honour went to Matti's Falafel, now sadly closed (Matti kept cooking there well into his 70s but time gets the better of us all). Falafel just isn't the same without a super crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, thick slice of spicy potato.
Chris Orbz / June 1, 2007 at 02:20 pm
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The fried-potato-in-the-falafel thing is an interesting and rarely offered option. I remember playing a Flash game online somewhere called, I think, The Falafel Game. You had to stuff pitas with different ingredients and hand them to customers as quickly as possible, and if you weren't fast enough they'd get upset.

There were only like 4 different ingredients, but one of them was french fries. It blew my mind and seemed extremely bizarre, but I've managed to get it made for me a couple times and it really does work. Most recently, I was at Falafel Queen at Queen/Bathurst a couple nights ago and got the guy to toss a few of the fries he was making my friend into my falafel.

Apparently they do it in Israel, but it's something that no one really likes to talk about around here.
Dan / July 27, 2007 at 04:45 pm
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"...might get lost on wilmington trying to get a falafel. and might end up in Jane & Finch..." That's like saying Queen West has prostitutes because it's 'right next to' Jarvis Street!

Toronto is a pretty big city and it's pretty offensive to post such a short-sighted comment, as the distance between Wilmington and Jane/Finch is similar to the distance between Parliament and Dufferin streets.

All this aside, Chris has convinced me to give King David's a try - it sure looks tasty!
bob / August 15, 2008 at 05:04 pm
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The french fries thing comes from the kebab tradition. I couldn't go anywhere in France or Germany without seeing people eating fries sticking out of a pita.
Jonathan / September 29, 2008 at 07:31 am
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KD has some good falafel but I definitely agree with the previous poster about Matti's, that falafel was the best I've ever had and I lived in the Middle East for two years. Sorry to hear that Matti's is now defunct, KD is a decent alternative but without the crispy fried potato it just isn't the same!
Rick / October 15, 2008 at 09:20 pm
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I haven't had a falafel in quite some time. I'm going to have to try KD's. And being only about 2 1/2 blocks away from me is a reason to try it.
Shyama / June 9, 2009 at 01:31 pm
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There is another King David location on Bathurst just south of Lawrence. It's still a trek for someone who lives downtown (I live on the Danforth) but would honestly go out of my way to get falafel from there. It really is that good. Definitely the best falafel in the city!

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