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Taste of the Month: Yallah Food's fast-casual restaurants offer an array of choices in downtown State College

on May 31, 2018 12:21 PM

Yallah is Arabic for “let’s go,” and owner Hitham Hiyajneh welcomes everyone to his restaurants. From Underground Burgers & Crepes and UR Pizza to Yallah Tacos and Burritos, Yallah Food Inc. brings variety and customization to the downtown State College food scene. Hiyajneh’s fast-casual restaurants, located on McAllister Street and East Calder Way, encourage customers to build their own pizzas, burgers, tacos, and burritos to suit their tastes.

A risk-taker with a passion for food, he has opened and relaunched several local eateries in State College after gathering feedback from customers. Although most of his customers are non-Muslims, Hiyajneh serves halal food to adhere to the dietary regulations outlined by Muslim law at all his restaurants.

A Jordanian-Lebanese who immigrated to the United States almost 30 years ago, Hiyajneh studied food science at the American University of Beirut. The oldest of 12 children – he has eight brothers and three sisters – he moved to State College in 2011 to help his mother run Pita Cabana, a Middle Eastern restaurant at 334 East Calder Way.

With the help of four of his brothers, Yallah Foods Inc. caters to students and locals alike with a variety of offerings sure to please every appetite.

“At Yallah Tacos and Yallah Burritos, we have huge monster burritos – Godzilla (chicken), King Kong (beef), Moby Dick (fish), and The Kraken (shrimp), all with half a pound of fries wrapped inside, for $7,” says Hiyajneh. “If you eat it and you are still hungry, we give you a second one to eat for free, but you have to eat it here. Only two people have tried!”

There are softshell tacos (wheat or corn) filled with your choice of chicken, steak, flounder, and shrimp at Yallah Tacos at 214 McAllister Street. The chicken and beef are marinated overnight. The beef is then slow-cooked for six hours until tender and pulled.

Just around the corner at 218 East Calder Way is Underground Burger. Pick your protein from your traditional beef, chicken, or turkey burger, or try a Middle Eastern favorite, the lamb burger; or go vegetarian with the black bean burger and falafel burger. Add toppings, condiments, and sauces.

Right next door at UR Pizza, for a unique Middle Eastern flavor, build a pizza with an herb sauce called za’atar, a blend of olive oil, thyme, sumac, sesame, and salt. Whether you are just picky or indecisive, Yallah Foods Inc. restaurants offer plenty of good choices.

 

For a special offer from Yallah Food and Town&Gown, click here!

 

 

 

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