MELBOURNE | I chanced across Wazzup Falafel, just inside my 5km radius, during lockdown 6.0. I’d heard about it a few months ago, so was pretty happy to be able to both satisfy my falafel craving, and tick a food spot off my list.
Wazzup Falafel was started by Jordanian/Palestinian refugee Ahmad Alalaea in March this year. An IFPA qualified personal trainer by trade, Ahmad moved to Australia in 2017 on a partner visa. He started Wazzup Falafel with the aim of introducing Melburnians to the joys of Palestinian style falafel, which is different to the kind of falafel that most are used to in Melbourne.
It’s hard to explain what makes Palestinian falafel unique, but when you eat it, you notice it’s pretty special. Beautifully spiced with a crunchy exterior and smooth interior. When I lived in London, I’d often get lunch from Mr Falafel, a Palestinian falafel joint in Shepherds Bush (definitely check it out if you’re in London). Eating Ahmad’s falafel on Saturday immediately transported me back to those lunches.
Something you might not realise until you look closer at the menu is that everything on the menu is vegan. This is exactly the kind of place that you take your cynical meat eating friend to. Wait until they’ve polished off and enjoyed their meal, and then drop the “that was vegan” info on them.
Ahmad has been pretty stoked with the community support for his venture over the challenging winter lockdowns. A lot of his customers are return customers, and it’s easy to see why. After enjoying the falafel box (falafel, hummus, pickles, spicy sauce) and special wrap (falafel, hummus, tomatoes, pickles, baby rocket, cucumber, fresh mint, fried eggplant, cauliflower, chips, spicy sauce), I’m super keen to try more.
Ahmad has been trading at his permanent location in Preston since May, after popping up across town in the months prior. A self proclaimed perfectionist, he hopes to quit his PT job when the COVID situation settles down, and focus 100% on WazzupFalafel . If the food is already this good with a part time focus, I can’t wait to see where Ahmad take things when he’s putting all of his energy into it.
31 St Georges Road
Fri: 5:00pm to 10:30pm
Sat: 12:00pm to 11:00pm
Sun: 1:00pm to 10:30pm