Nearly a year into operating a small Mediterranean restaurant in Cambridge’s Inman Square, restaurateurs Mohamad El Zein (formerly of Masa Restaurant Group) and Radouan Ouassaidi (South End Pita) will add a new fast-casual Middle Eastern restaurant just around the corner.
Pita Cambridge will open within the former Olecito space at 11 Springfield St., with a focus on grab-and-go items, catering, and retail, according to El Zein.
“We decided to pursue a location around the corner because we've established a great rapport with the neighborhood with Moona being the go-to fine casual restaurant for Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean cuisine,” El Zein told Eater in an email. “Additionally, there aren’t many Middle Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean fast-casual concepts that are grab ‘n go based, so we saw a real opportunity for Pita to thrive.”
When Olecito occupied the Springfield Street space, there were a few counter seats and a seasonal outdoor patio. Pita Cambridge will keep up this format, along with a retail section for house-made items. The team will start construction in September with a goal of opening in the winter.
The menu at Pita Cambridge will span breakfast, lunch, and dinner, ranging from shahshuka and mana’eesh flatbreads to kebabs, falafel, and a rotating shawarma skewer, El Zein said. Customers can also expect a mezze bar with items like muhammara, tzatziki, harissa hummus, and fig labneh.
In the meantime, El Zein and Ouassaidi will continue their work at Moona.
“We love the neighborhood and community of guests we have created, and we are having so much fun with this cuisine and all the local produce we are working with coupled with the Arabic pantry,” El Zein said. Stay tuned for specific details on construction and an opening timeline for Pita Cambridge.