I've lived in the middle east for 19 of the last 22 years. I have had falafel on three continents and eight countries. I've eaten it fresh out of the oil (no bread, no sauce, no salad) in slums in Cairo and from shops little bigger than a walk-in closet in Sana'a. I know falafel. One thing I know for sure is that it should not take this loooonnnnnnnnngggg to make a falafel sandwich. My friends and I were waiting on line at a nearby restaurant, and two members of our group were gnawing their arms off from hunger, so I volunteered to pop over to the this falafel shop to buy something to tide them over. By the time I got two falafel sandwiches the line they were waiting in had vanished and they were seated, had ordered and were served. It was absurd. I stood in line and watched the sleepy-eyed cook take the same amount of time to make two sandwiches as my favorite shop in Cairo takes to prepare 10. It was as if for each new sandwich he had to rediscover which vegetables and condiments were required. I learned the order by watching him for five minutes, (during which he produced a total of two sandwiches.)
Those of us in line (there were 10 to 15 of us, trapped there because sam slow-poke's colleague had already taken our money) were buffeted every few minutes by the wait staff moving to and from the kitchen to the dining room next door. Muttering a cursory "pardon" seemed to take the place of going around the line. Either that or we take away purchasers were not deemed to be customers because of the (un)likelihood of us giving tips.
All this could have been forgiven if the sandwich had been spectacular. It was not. While there was an interesting array of extras (including what appeared to be fried onions and grilled eggplant) they were not enough to overcome the fact that the falafel balls themselves were stone cold, pulled out of drawer under the preparation counter. Falafel is not meant to be served cold. My wife was more generous, calling her sandwich slightly better than okay, but I had lost interest entirely.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.