A quick, healthy lunch in Midtown doesn’t need to be as forgettable as it sounds. Just get food at Samesa on the concourse level of Rockefeller Center.
The whole menu is available every day from 11am to 4pm, and—whether you order the chicken shawarma, sabich with pickled eggs and roasted eggplant, or vegan chickpea seitan with avocado hummus—you can get a lot of very enjoyable food for about $15. All of the mains come as pitas or platters, and we recommend going with a platter, which comes with rice, a few different spreads, and a mound of pickled vegetables. There’s nothing on the menu you should avoid, but your relationship with Samesa should begin with the chicken shawarma. It comes with a big pile of tender chicken pieces that are slightly charred and covered in bright, acidic and rich, creamy sauces.
The food is filling and the portions are large, but Samesa is also healthy enough to make you feel less like one of those waste containers marked with a skull and crossbones. The platters are all packed with pickled cauliflower, carrots, and other things that grow in the dirt, and the vegetarian options are just as enjoyable as the meat-focused ones.
Stop by Samesa for some takeout when your body is telling you that it needs vitamins and drawn blinds, or hang out in the dining room and enjoy some food while it's still steaming. Whether you eat here or in your apartment (as you daydream about a couch with built-in airplane tray tables), it'll be a casual, mostly-healthy weekday meal that you’ll remember.
Get this on your first trip here, and your long-term relationship with this place will be underway. Like all the platters, it comes with pickled vegetables, rice, and dips (but the star is still the juicy, tender chicken shawarma).