A Sandwich a Day: Lamb and Beef Chawarma Special at Semiramis

A Sandwich a Day

Reviews of Chicago sandwiches.

Editor's Note: In this great city of ours, one could eat a different sandwich every day of the year--so that's what we'll do. Here's A Sandwich a Day, our daily look at sandwiches around the Windy City. Got a sandwich we should check out? Let us know!


[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger]

I have little doubt that the lamb and beef chawarma (which is apparently an acceptable way to spell shawarma) at Semiramis is totally solid and worthwhile option. How could it not be? With meat carved straight from the spit loaded on a house-made lavosh with tomatoes, lettuce, onions, cucumber pickles, and tahini, it kind of has to be good. But I didn't order it. See, the moment I noticed that the lamb and beef chawarma special ($8.00) also included eggplant, red cabagge, and harissa, I never looked back.

There is so much going on here, it's almost hard to keep track of it all. Luckily, all the elements compliment each other, making for a sandwich that is meaty, crunchy, soft, acidic, and spicy. The meat is still the star, coming off the spit charred but thickly cut, so that each piece remains juicy. Next up are the pickles, which help cut through the fattiness of the meat. Totally unrelated, but still definitely tasty, is the orange mound in the back, which turns out to be a Lebanese-style potato salad. Consider it the bag of chips for this truly special sandwich.


4639-41 North Kedzie Avenue, Chicago, IL 60625 (map)