While most of us are still dreaming of sugar plum fairies, the Namouz family is hard at work baking 1000 pieces of fresh pita bread daily and freshly preparing all of the delicacies we have come to expect at the Pita House. “We make everything, everyday,” Hani Namouz explains. Perhaps this is why it is not uncommon to find lines out the door for their freshly-made food.
Opening in 1987, the Pita house has been a staple in Greenville for the last 28 years.
But how did it all start?
This Christian-Palestinian family are Israeli citizens who were originally from Shefa –Amr, an Arab village in the Northern District of Israel, about 12 miles from larger cities Haifa, Akko, and Nazareth.
In the 1980’s, Zuhair Namouz came to Greenville because he had a friend attending Greenville Tech. Being immigrants; they wanted to live near someone they already knew. After working on an assembly line, Zuhair needed back surgery and a new line of work. He knew there was nothing like the Pita House in Greenville. Along with brothers Nazih and Ziad Namouz, they opened with “…Mom’s recipes and made adjustments to suit the nature of the country and the customer,” explains Zuhair. For instance, falafel is in a pita sandwich in their country, but here folks wanted it on a plate. “In the beginning it was hard for us to understand that someone needed falafel on a plate, but we see the demand and people asking, so we adjusted and put it on a plate.”
Falafel and hummos plate
Middle Eastern Plate: chicken, beef or gyro
All come with pita bread and with homemade hot sauce and tahini.
Don't miss the lemonade on crushed ice (made with real lemons and real sugar) & delicious Lebanese pastries.
Pita Bread is one piece of dough that goes through an 850°F oven for only 10-15 seconds. Shhhhh....the secret to baking the bread is the high heat. The dough has yeast, which is a bacteria. The moment it goes into the oven, the yeast grows and seconds later, the heat kills the bacteria turning it into a gas, which pushes itself out, creating the puff in the pita bread.