Halal Guys. Photo: Halal Guys/Facebook
The Halal Guys is bringing “American halal” food to downtown Berkeley. Photo: Halal Guys/Facebook
The Halal Guys is bringing “American halal” food to downtown Berkeley. Photo: Halal Guys/Facebook

Last week, we broke the news that Center Street’s Le Regal closed. We’ve now received confirmation that the space will be filled by the first Bay Area location of New York-based restaurant The Halal Guys.

The hyper-popular restaurant announced its West Coast expansion earlier this year, but had until this point been mum on its Berkeley location. The new restaurant is part of a huge growth effort on the part of The Halal Guys, which got its start in 1990 as a converted hot dog truck in New York.

The Halal Guys has plans to open over 200 different locations around the world, including throughout California, Las Vegas, Connecticut, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Chicago, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Houston and Austin, as well as internationally.

What’s on the menu? The Halal Guys specializes in what they call “American halal food” — platters of chicken, gyro meat and rice topped with a proprietary white sauce (a mayonnaise-based blend) and spicy red hot sauce. It is, according to the company website, “a complex melting pot of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean flavors that are sure to delight.”

Le Regal in downtown Berkeley is now closed. Photo: Kate Williams
The Halal Guys will take the place of recently-shuttered Le Regal at 2126 Center St. Photo: Kate Williams

According to Binh Tran, a member of the marketing team for the new location, the Berkeley Halal Guys will feature an open kitchen smack dab in the front of the restaurant so passers-by can get a glimpse of what’s cooking.

All of the food served at The Halal Guys will be certified halal, and prepared “following strict Islamic dietary guidelines.” These guidelines include humane treatment of the livestock, “high quality ingredients” and “ethical choices,” which, the company says, impart a “distinctive taste” in its food.

Inside Scoop reported that The Halal Guys is currently hiring for the new location, which points to a quick turnaround for the restaurant space.

Tom Nguyen, also on the marketing team, told NOSH that The Halal Guys is currently in the “design phase.” He added: “We do not have a definite date of opening yet, but we are very excited to bring the Halal Guy’s deliciousness to the Berkeley area!”

We will be sure to keep you posted as the restaurant gets closer to opening.

The Halal Guys will be at 2126 Center St. (between Shattuck Avenue and Oxford Street), Berkeley. Connect with the restaurant on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Kate Williams has been writing about food since 2009. After spending two years developing recipes for cookbooks at America’s Test Kitchen, she moved to Berkeley and began work as a freelance writer and...