12 Chairs started as a small cafe, which is where the name comes from, over ten years ago. They are located in Soho on MacDougal St. and have now opened a second location in Brooklyn. Their menu consists of Middle Eastern and Eastern European dishes made up of locally sourced, fresh ingredients. Every dish has a homemade, freshly prepared quality and taste.
The space is bigger than when they first opened with a homely feel inside with wooden furniture and exposed brick and a single bench out front – nice to sit in the sun sipping coffee.I have visited on many occasions after having such a great first experience. The staff were warm and welcoming and happy to check with the chef what is or can be done gluten free for me.
My favourite dish to date is the Hummus falafel. A large bowl of delicious hummus with 5 chickpea falafel balls, sprinkled with spices. This dish is so full of flavour, I just wish they had Gluten Free bread to scrape the remaining hummus from the bowl.
The Shakshuka without the side of bread is a hearty, warm gluten free dish, perfect on a cold morning. Two eggs poached in a spicy Moroccan tomato based sauce, served with Israeli salad. To make this dish even tastier, I strongly recommend adding the Bulgarian feta cheese on top.
12 Chairs serves an array of omelettes, all with a bread basket, which unfortunately us celiacs can not enjoy. If you are with people who can eat gluten though, make sure they get it, my boyfriend really enjoyed their fresh warm bread. I have only tried one of the omelettes, the goats cheese and spinach with a side of salad. In my eyes you can not go wrong with goats cheese, I swear it makes every thing delicious.
If you like dolmas, you definitely have to order some here. I love anything with a vinegar taste and have always had a weak spot for dolmas. They are made fresh in the kitchen and are perfection.
Since summer is coming and it can sometimes be difficult to eat heavy dishes in the heat, 12 chairs still has a large list of salads that are or can be done Gluten Free. The grilled chicken salad is always a good idea. Pieces of grilled chicken breast are served on a bed of mesclun salad, with tomatoes, cucumbers, mushrooms and onions. Don’t worry, just because it is a salad doesn’t mean it isn’t filling, it was a decent size and the fresh ingredients were satisfying.
I will definitely continue going here. Good food, good service, and good coffee.
- Gluten Free Bread – No
- Location – 56 MacDougal St, Soho
- Coffee – Good