Today we’d like to introduce you to Mohammad Altawaha.
Mohammad, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I grew up in a small village in Jordan and in 2008 I traveled to the U.S. for the first time with the hope of earning my Masters Degree. During school, I worked in various positions at several Houston area restaurants and soon discovered that I had a real passion for cooking. Within a few years of working in the restaurant industry, I decided to open my first food truck, then called “Abu Omar Taco.” At this time, food trucks were not quite as trendy as they are today and I was the first and only halal food truck in the Houston area. Given our diverse customer base, our trucks have always had signage in both English and Arabic. The Arabic version of our sign read only “Abu Omar Halal,” and the name soon stuck. In those early days, our truck served mostly halal tacos, but we quickly discovered that our chicken shawarma was a customer favorite. Since then, we have focused almost entirely on Mediterranean classics, including our specialty shawarma. I now have eight locations in the Houston area, including the Texas Medical Center, Galleria Area, Montrose, UH Campus Area, Katy, Clear Lake, Sugar Land, Cypress and we recently opened our ninth and tenth locations in Austin and College Station. In addition to the Abu Omar Halal brand, I also own Arabella Mediterranean Cuisine located in the downtown tunnel system.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Our path to success has not been an easy one. Outside of all the usual challenges facing a small business, we have also experienced several shocking obstacles along the way.
Twice, someone has tried to set our food trucks on fire and in 2016 one of our trucks was actually stolen from the Texas Medical Center.
Abu Omar Halal – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Our specialty and what we are best known for is our Chicken Shawarma Arabi. As we mentioned, when our truck first opened, we were serving a mix of Mediterranean and Mexican style cuisine. Customers were very vocal about their love of our traditional styled shawarma and this really shifted the focus of our menu and our brand.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
My proudest of my career and of my entire life was the day I married my wife. I love my wife and I appreciate her greatly for the assistance she has provided for our business.
She has a background in marketing, so she has been instrumental in the growth of Abu Omar Halal.
- Sandwiches – $6.50
- Sandwich Combo with Fries – $8.50
- Address:Medical Center – 2802 Old Spanish Tr.
Galleria Area – 7727 Westheimer Rd.
UH Campus Area – 4835 Calhoun Rd. #T1
Katy – 1950 Fry Rd.
Clear Lake – 580 El Dorado
Cypress – 25950 Hwy 290
Sugar Land – 9931 S. Hwy 6
Montrose – 1505 Westheimer Rd.
- Website: abuomarhalal.com
- Phone: 832-732-3486
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @abu_omar_halal
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Abu-omar-halal-103499869990386/
- Twitter: @AbuOmarHalal
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/abu-omar-halal-houston-3
- Other: https://www.yelp.com/biz/abu-omar-halal-sugarland?osq=Abu+Omar+Halal