Review: Shipping-container falafel stand delivers unexpected charm in Sandy Springs

Credit: Brandon Amato

Credit: Brandon Amato

Editor’s note: Takeout Night is a new review feature that focuses on the carryout experience at metro Atlanta restaurants.

Last year, longtime Atlanta restaurateur Udi Hershkovitz (FuegoMundo, Marrakesh) opened SabaRaba’s in the parking lot of the Parkside Shops on Roswell Road in Sandy Springs.

The walk-up stand, which Hershkovitz calls an Israeli-style “falafeliya,” is housed in a bright-yellow shipping container, custom-built to serve as a stationary food truck, and equipped with a full kitchen and a takeout window.

The sprawling menu is divided into pitas, laffas (pita-like flatbreads), gyros, plates and family meals — plus salads, sides, sauces and desserts.

Vegetarian and gluten-free dishes are available, as are plant-based proteins. The menu also includes healthy fats, fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and whole grains.

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Credit: Brandon Amato

Credit: Brandon Amato

After you decide on a wrap, there are multiple proteins and vegetables from which to choose. Almost everything except the gyros is flavored with hummus, bright Israeli salad, pickles and tahini.

The crispy falafel were made with ground chickpeas, fresh veggies and spices, then hand scooped and fried to order. The succulent shawarma was classic-style roasted chicken, cooked on a vertical spit.

The excellent, juicy gyro was a shaved lamb and beef mixture, served in fluffy flatbread, with tzatziki, lettuce, tomatoes and onions.

Another option is to order a “deconstructed” plate, which allows you to make your own combination of hummus, pita and Israeli salad, with the protein of your choice, plus tahini or tzatziki sauce.

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Credit: Brandon Amato

Credit: Brandon Amato

The fry station showed its expertise with the chicken schnitzel version of the plate, delivering two thin, perfectly crispy (but substantial) pieces of breaded chicken, dotted with sesame seeds.

The hand-cut seasoned fries were equally embrittled. Other side dishes of note included creamy hummus, roasted cauliflower and mujadara rice with lentils and caramelized onions.

For dessert, the fresh baklava was exactly what you would expect: flaky, nutty and syrupy. Next time, I’ll try the malabi, a vegan, gluten-free custard, flavored with rose water and topped with slivered almonds.

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Credit: Brandon Amato

Credit: Brandon Amato

Grab-and-go drinks available include Boylan’s sodas and bottled iced teas.

Ordering at the pickup window can take a while, depending on the line, and the time of day. After placing an order, it seemed everyone was given a waiting time of 7 minutes. For my order, that was spot on.

Everything was packed neatly to go. Plates were arranged in divided, compostable containers, with sauces on the side. Wraps and pitas were rolled tightly in foil, making it easy to eat on the spot, or reheat at home.

Credit: Brandon Amato

Credit: Brandon Amato

Although it’s in the middle of a shopping center parking lot, SabaRaba’s was unexpectedly charming. White picnic tables and Adirondack chairs provided adequate seating, and there were strings of lights for evening dining.

However, while photos of the restaurant show umbrellas over the outdoor tables, there was no shelter of any kind on the unusually hot and sunny day that I visited.

Next door to SabaRaba’s, in another shipping container, Bok You serves Korean fried chicken, with Asian and American sides, including kimchi and cornbread. That made me think about creating an Asian-Israeli fusion dinner the next time I visit, ordering a few dishes from each place.


Food: Israeli-style falafel, shawarma, gyros and more

Service model: takeout only, with online ordering, and delivery from GrubHub and Uber Eats

Vegetarian dishes: many options, including salads and sides

Alcohol: no

Price range: $5 (side dish) to $55 (family dinner)

Hours: 11 a.m.-8 p.m. daily

Outdoor dining: small patio with tables and chairs

Address, phone: 5920 Roswell Road, Sandy Springs. 404-904-3881


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