Most of my memories, happy and sad, are related to my teen years and early university. It was the best time of my life. I spent my childhood in Saudi Arabia with my family. I didn't like that place and the whole fifteen years I spent there are like a giant memory black hole. I hardly remember the place. I never speak about it and it doesn't feature in any way in my life. Moving back to Syria was the best thing that ever happened to me. New friends, new school and a huge sense of belonging to the place.

Now-a-days, part of every holiday I spend in Damascus is a visit to my teen years food haunts. The sights, smells and flavours bring back so many happy memories. The food occasionally doesn't live up to the memories but that might just prove how much our taste change as we grow older.

One place in particular is an exception. My memories of that shop dates back to my childhood. It was part of our summer holiday tradition to go with my mum to eat Sujuk sandwich in Sirop my favourite Armenian place on Al-Salehiyeh pedestrian street.

Sirop is a little gem of a shop. The place has not changed an inch since opened in 1963. The bright outside exterior takes you into this tiny shop. The smell of sujuk and pastirma spices fills the place and force into ordering couple of their tiny but absolutely delicious sandwiches. They serve a very small menu of sujuk, pastirma, Kashkaval cheese and Halloumi all served in small soft bread rolls pressed flat in a sandwich maker.

Apart from the great food the place is worth a visit just for the retro feel it offers. Their original cashier machine is worthy of a place in a museum. Next time you are in Damascus make the effort to go grab a sandwich. You will not regret it.


jaraad said...

Before reading the post, when I saw the first picture something hit me. When I saw the second picture I was like I have been there before, I know this place. But when I read it is in Salheya and makes Pastirma and Kaskaval sandwiches I almost cried. This was my favorite place whenever I visited Damascus. I haven't been there for more than 8 years but the taste of this shop's sandwiches is something I will never forget. Thanks for this nostalgic moment.

Kano said...


I am glad I managed to bring you happy memories. If you haven't been to Damascus in eight years it is time for a new visit. The place has changed so much.

Anonymous said...

we had a (SIROP) in Halab too, a sandwich place, my favorits were the (salsijo)with (airan) and sometimes on winter nighs red lentil soap,


Kano said...


Welcome to my blog. What is salsijo? Some times I am not very familiar with Aleppian names?

Anonymous said...



Nadia Albakri said...

Salam from another Syrian, ex-Saudi-Arabia resident, now living in Canada.

Love your blog. Keep it up!

Kano said...


Welcome to my blog. I am so glad you like it. I hope it brings you nice memories of the far far home.

Adnan said...

Sure does bring back the memories (this is @aalbakri from above).

I've barely cooked my entire life, but since my non-Arab wife got pregnant, I've been helping out (just a bit) with cooking, and your recipes definitely allow her to discover our flavors and aromas.

Kano said...


I am glad to be of help and to introduce your wife to our beautiful cuisine.

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