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by Rich and Ann Bates

Pita Jungle in the Plaza at Williams CentreIn continuing our quest looking for good spots to eat without breaking the bank, as well as ones that are family friendly, we have perhaps wandered into a new favorite with great prices! This is Pita Jungle, located at 5340 E. Broadway Boulevard, in the Plaza at Williams Centre, (520.207.6873) which is open for lunch, dinner, and happy hour.

The lunch and dinner menu offers hot pitas, pita wraps, salads, wood-fired pizzas and much more all created with local produce and products. The space, in the old 58 & Holding location, is quite large, handsomely designed and decorated with some beautiful glass work on the walls and ceilings, making it a strikingly beautiful spot to dine. At no time during our lunch and happy hour visits was noise ever a factor, and, no, we were never seated too close to another table, which can happen often.

Lunch experiences have been uniformly excellent, tasty, and artfully presented. One such lunch was sharing an entree and a starter (which was more than enough for two) served with a flavored fruited green tea. The entree was a roasted chicken shawarma ($6.79), that is, grilled chicken breast on pita bread served with fresh greens, onions, pickles, tomatoes and a garlic sauce. The starter was baba ganoosh ($4.99), a puree of eggplant, tahini, yogurt and garlic. Both were fresh-tasting, well-prepared, and of right portion sizes.

Patio at Pita JungleOther options include glazed chicken lavosh pizza ($9.99, and enough for two), Greek salad ($5.99), grilled vegetable salad ($9.29) or platters to share ranging from a Mediterranean platter ($10.29) to a chicken combo platter ($10.29). Again, we found that sharing an entree with a starter was ample.

Perhaps the best bargain is the Happy Hour from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. daily, which offers tapas ranging from $1 to $3 that include a hummus trio, baba ganoosh, garlic dip, fresh mozzarella and tomato, shrimp in ajo sauce — all bargains which can be paired with draft beers, margaritas ($3) or wine by the glass ($5). While these tapas are small portions, they are uniformly delicious and fresh, giving you the opportunity to share several, if not many, items.

The owner, Dan Chavis, is extremely gracious and attentive. He will gladly answer any questions. We had a good time and appreciated “the art of eating healthy” as demonstrated there. If you haven’t been there, give this place a try!