Falafel by the ball

Illustration by Brian Breneman

During a trip to New York City a few years ago, the towering, sun-obscuring skyscrapers of Manhattan were easily eclipsed in impressiveness by a little fast-casual chain of eateries named after a bean, Chickpea. It left a stomach-rumbling impression that Sacramento should have the next link in this NYC chain that sells individual falafel pieces by the ball. And now there is one. Kind of. It's not the same as the East Coast franchise, but it's called Chickpeas (a subtle difference), and it's in Davis at 640 W. Covell Boulevard. It has the reasonably priced options a hungry vegan would expect from a Mediterranean-slash-Middle Eastern grub hub, like baba ghanoush and hummus. And, of course, falafel—sold by the ball (50 cents each!). If that is not enough fried garbanzo goodness, take note: Pita Kitchen Plus opened a second location in Roseville (1725 Santa Clara Drive, Suite 150). Newbies, order the Super Sandwich stuffed with falafel and tabbouleh. Or go to Chickpea in New York: The choice (and falafel) is yours.