The finishing touches are now being put on Amsterdam Falafelshop, located in Diva Indian Bistro's former lounge space, and owner Matt D'Alessio hopes for a soft opening late next week. The sister shop of a Washington, D.C. hotspot, Somerville's new Amsterdam Falafelshop will offer falafel sandwiches and salad bowls with a do-it-yourself toppings bar, as well as twice-fried Dutch fries ("fritten"), brownies, and soft drinks.
The instructions are simple, according to the menu: pick your pita (white or wheat, both organic) or salad bowl, receive your sandwich (three or five falafel balls), crush your balls (self-explanatory?), and put your goodies in the pita (choose from 23 toppings). The fries and falafel are fried to order in canola oil, and nearly all toppings and sauces are made in-house every day, except for the pickles, ketchup, and pepperoncinis. Other toppings include pickled cauliflower, baba ghanoush, tahini, and garlic cream sauce. Because you're going to want a refill after your pass through the toppings bar, the tahini and garlic cream sauce are also redundantly located beyond the line.
One wall of the small space is dominated by a large photograph of Amsterdam canals; D'Alessio says that it will be adorned with white trim to make it look like a window. Another wall features a mural of Amsterdam images from D.C. artist Byron Peck. Amsterdam Falafelshop will have eight tables totaling 19 seats, and the tables will each have a convenient recess to place the fries, which are served in traditional paper cones. Fry sauces include curried ketchup, peanut sauce, and Dutch mayo, a thinner and more sugary version than its American cousin.