Thursday, August 23, 2012


You can keep your peanuts and Cracker Jack; when Jon and I hit a Nationals game, we head straight to Max's Kosher Grill for shwarma. Located on the main concourse just behind Section 143, Max's serves up some of the best fare in the park. In fact, hitting this kosher cart has become such a game time ritual for us that "shwarma" is now used as a verb in our family: "I'm hungry; want to shwarma?" "I already shwarma'd." "Shwarma'ing is so good."
I believe the secret of Max's shwarma lies in its opposites. The the warm, soft pita pocket counters its contents of crunchy, cool cucumber, tomato, and onion filling; the tender, spiced meats soften the bite of neighboring thinly sliced pickles; and the creamy garlic mayonnaise tempers the red pepper hot sauce. Best yet, you don't feel like crawling into your stretchy pants after shwarma'ing, as you do after downing an Italian sausage with grilled onions and peppers (admittedly, my other ballpark go-to).
I must warn you, however, that shwarma'ing is mighty messy. Chow down at a table near the Nats Family Fun Area, which is adjacent to Max's. The only other drawback you'll find in getting hooked on shwarma at the ballpark is that Max's is not open for Friday and Saturday games (kosher, duh). Jon confirms that this is equally frustrating for the chosen (Jon) and not chosen (me) alike.

Jon and I shwarma'd last night, it just so happens. So even though the Nats lost the last game of this week's series against the Braves, dinner was still a real winner. 
By the way, if you're wondering why I'm wearing a Senators hat, it's not (just) because I like the stand-up-straight type of the "W" better. (The curly "W" font reminds me of over-cooked spaghetti, sorry. Or Wallgreens.) It's because I grew up an O's fan, see. But after more than three years of going to Nats Park with Jon, I finally caved and bought the hat. It was a big deal. Know this, though: When it comes to the Battle of the Beltway, I'm all Orioles. Otherwise, I'll root, root, root for this home team. And for shwarmas ;)