Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Taeem on Melrose

A few people have been asking why I haven't updated the Hummus blog for awhile and sadly, I must admit it's not because I haven't eaten Hummus - it's because all the Hummus restaurants I've tried lately have been awful. Truly awful. A few have even cause me to feel sick afterwards.
More and more new restaurants are popping across Los Angeles and yet it seems that their owners don't really have any love or respect for Hummus.

A relatively new place on Melrose Ave, Los Angeles is a small hole in the wall Israeli place called TAEEM- which means tasty.
They have cheap Shawarma Buritto deals for about $6 for a chicken Shawarma which is sweet.
But this blog isn't about Shawarma it's about Hummus ( and sometimes Falafel) as well.
I've tried this place a few times and as much as I wanted to like it - I didn't.

Both the Falafel and the Hummus were extremely bland. The Falafel had a very generic taste and the Hummus didn't taste fresh.
Moreover, the garbage bins were filled beyond full and the restroom I entered was dirty and disgusting.
I know a Hummus guide shouldn't be criticizing the garbage and the toilets - but I think that it is all connected.

Hummus is a passion and to make great hummus one needs to have a lot of discipline to continue striving for the stars and get the recipe just right.
Same with running a business and part of that - especially with a food business is to make sure it is all clean.

I talked for a few minutes with the owner of the place. He is very likeable and so I did visit this place 3 times to make sure I didn't fall on them on a bad day.
I visited them both during different hours of the day with always the same results.
It's a pity. 
I really am rooting for this place. I liked it's vibe. I liked it's pricing. I liked it's location. I loved it's low key attitude. I even liked the owner.

It's a new place and it can succeed cause there are a lot of people that would love great hummus in this area.
But to make great hummus - they need to invest more passion into the fine details.
They need to clean their act- as well as the store and need to try out more to get a much better hummus.

That said, unlike the various places I've gone to lately - I didn't become sick afterwards from the Hummus. So with the benchmark being dropped so much - I guess that's one point in their favor.

I am rooting for this place. So I will revisit it in the future and hopefully it'll get it's act together. It has the potential for greatness. Now all it needs is the Hummus ( and the Falafel)!


  1. The falafel is terible. the second time I went the houmus was great.
    Sahwarma - the best

  2. I respectfully disagree about the falafel, which I found to be excellent - spicy and flavorful. The Shawarma is fantastic and everything else I have had there has been quite good. Though I don't consider myself a hummus expert, I am not without experience in the field and I found the hummus-ful plate at Taeem to be distinctly above average; not the best I have had but overwhelmingly better what I have had outside of the middle east.

  3. "Dear" Mr. Katzir,

    As the owner of the restaurant, I'm reading your post and really trying to understand what went through your head when you posted it, where all this coming from and what's the purpese of it. You are obviously doing everything in your power to give bad name to my restaurant, too bad for you, that ONLY YOU think the way you do, you are more then welcome to stop by anytime you want, bring w/you people who knows how hummus should taste and serve, let them be the judges, since your knowledge is soo poor and flat. As for the sanitary of the bathroom, i gaurentee you, it's cleaner then in your own house, i'm sure you have just describe your own bathroom. Sad, really sad. Some people can't be happy for other's when they do much better then them.
    It's ok though, no hard feelings.
    Please make the time and try us again. I have no doubt in my mind, you will have to take your own words back and make another post, only this time, it will be a positive one.

    Don't be shy to represent yourself when you come in, like i said, NO HARD FEELINGS.

    Ta-Eem Grill Inc.

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  6. Personally, I loved the hummus. I think it's better than any I've had at any restaurant in Los Angeles, but that just may be me. Being Kosher, the shawarma is the best I've had outside of Israel, whether in New York or Los Angeles.

  7. I completeley disagree, I visited the place on a few occasions
    and found the food to be very good, the owner to be more then giving very large portions gives from the heart, I found the owner charming freindly funny some one who loves his job. I highly recommend it,and make your own judgement.

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