With a drove of hungry, eager students, the area surrounding Loyola is a hotspot for eateries. Located at 6474 N. Sheridan Ave., fast-casual Mediterranean restaurant The Halal Guys opened Aug. 21.
The restaurant has a limited menu with two main options: pitas and platters. They offer either gyro, chicken or falafel, or a combination of two, for both the sandwiches and the platters. The items come with veggies and the restaurant’s signature white and hot sauce.
The establishment has a warm, comfortable atmosphere reminiscent of a classic diner with its red, white and yellow color scheme. Plenty of seating lines the restaurant and its glass walls make for great people-watching.
Prices are reasonable, with each sandwich costing $7.99 and the platters sitting at $8.99 for a small portion and $9.99 for a regular portion. For a side, patrons can order baba ghanoush, which is a spread made of eggplant, hummus, falafel and fries.
The gyro sandwich is presented in a fluffy, hot pita. While the website advertises an original white and hot sauce that tops the sandwich, that was left on the cutting room floor. The sandwich was flavorful thanks to the onion and tomato but a bit dry.
People who like gyros won’t likely turn down the Halal Guys’ sandwich but there’s no reason to make an effort for it either. Maybe with the sauce, it’s a game-changer. But that’s only if patrons are lucky enough to receive the sauce like advertised.
The combination platter is a generous size, even the small portion. The falafel are run of the mill but they’re sure to satisfy a customer’s quench for the fried good. The chicken lacks spice but mixed with the rice and veggies, its bland taste is masked well.
Perhaps the signature sauce paints a different picture but the food without it is rather vanilla. It’s fine but it’s nothing special.
Crinkle-cut fries added some bountiful flavor on the side. The saltiness of all the food definitely creates a need for a beverage but a bit of a dry tongue is worth it for the fries.
The Halal Guys is hardly top-tier Mediterranean food but for a fast-food restaurant with a prime location near campus and affordable prices, it’s a fine option for either lunch or dinner. Despite the seemingly large oversight of the missing sauce, the food was average. Neither spectacular or disastrous, The Halal Guys is just alright.
The Halal Guys is open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11:30 a.m to 11:00 p.m. Sundays.