Main Location: Minneapolis
One of our newest entrants to the street world, I first heard about Kebabs through a fellow classmate, who mentioned a friend/workmate of his starting a new stand. What do you know, when the next day I’m down with the Food Trucks I spot this smaller, steel-colored box snug between two of the giant cars. In front is a small line starting in front of a man holding a tablet, as the big wooden sign details us of the Booth’s (and that’s really what it is, a large booth, but with wheels for moving around) simple offerings.
Now, before you get ahead of me, no these are not the random pieces of meat and vegetables shoved on a skewer. We don’t want any sword-fighting in the streets (okay, WE do, but the food truck owners don’t need to worry about the lawsuits).
Doner Kebabs are an Australian street food made from a gyro-like meat, both regular and chicken. Wrapped in a larger, thinner flatbread than the traditional pita, they’re served with spicy garlic-chili sauces and various other fillings. Finally, Kebabs presses in a Panini grill, sealing the edges, getting it crispy, and taking that sandwich experience to the next level. (As does any good Panini)
Kebabs simplifies, offering only 3 options for press, with your choice of sauce and variety of veggies for extra. They also have a salad, though why would you stand in line for lettuce?
The pinnacle of a gyro all wrapped up in a perfect package, the lamb-pork meat is tasty and spicy, sauces are sharp, and the tortilla-like flatbread crisp and soft. Veggies, however, are placed in raw, which can lead to certain items ending up watery and bland due to only partial cooking; not sure what I think about warm lettuce either. Avoid this by choosing your toppings carefully.
Press is tight and sealed, the only thing escaping being a few trickling of juice right down your hand and wrist. Everybody knows that’s usually the best part. Very easy to walk around with only one hand available.
All presses are around $7, but let me tell you the real deal for this booth; if you want different and extra veggies, they don’t screw you over with charges. 15 cents is all they charge for each addition, meaning very easy customization for non-wallet bending costs.
Their only real drawback I’ve found, due to the fact that for every single order they have to slice the meat from the stick, mix and wrap things together, and press for a few minutes. Now, this doesn’t sound so bad, until you realize that they only have two sandwich presses in their small area.
This ends up where even the smallest of lines can end up a decently noticeable wait for your order.
The TOE: 9
Doner Kebabs is an absolutely fantastic idea for street food; it takes something we are all so very familiar with but changes it just enough to provide a unique eating experience you can walk around it. My favorite thing about them though is their booth, that small little thing that looks like it should be squeezed in the corner and out of the way. You can’t help but think it belongs in some international market bazaar between a soup stand and a tent made of beads… though it might be a little flashier.
Alright, the first time I actually tried to eat here, I had to give up; the line was taking an incredibly long time to move, despite the fact there were only about 5-7 people in it. My next time moved a little faster, but it was still quite slow. This mainly because, for whatever reason, the person taking the order was trying to do it on some sort of Tablet-related Program, despite the fact the kitchen window was RIGHT BEHIND HIM. Pencil and paper would have done the job a lot faster, which most other food trucks have already figured out.
To be fair, they had only just opened, but it is very difficult to see them moving to something acceptable anytime soon. I really do HOPE that they’ve been able to work past these beginning problems; they really have the potential to be one of the Pillars of Food Truck scene.
I can’t wait until the day I read a new comment telling me how wrong I am now about this.
Do not try to visit if you are at some Food Truck Gathering Event or if you are in a rush; both the wait in line and wait for the food will not be kind. However, when you’re walking down the street on a cool day and you see them standing with only a couple people in line, take a stop and enjoy something fantastic. Try the chicken while you’re at it, it looks good.
For extra veggies, these are the ones to avoid:
- Mushrooms (put in almost raw, lot of water pushed out, not fully cooked)
- Cucumbers (don’t like the idea of cooking cucumber; get the Tzatziki sauce instead)
- Pineapple (lukewarm-hot steamed pineapple isn’t pleasant)