It would seem that Glasgow is about to see a new foodie trend descend upon it. First, it was burgers – a scene which has presumably reached it’s peak with the recent closure of the Glasgow branch of Byron. The rise of Paesano soon saw many other pizza-only restaurants pop up, jumping on the bandwagon of authentic, Neapolitan-style pizzas. The opening of ‘Babs last year marked the beginning of a new reign – kebabs.
One of the latest openings offering up kebabs is Doner Haus, on West Nile Street. The restaurant doesn’t have the best location – shoppers are less likely to pass the restaurant and pop in on a whim, meaning Doner Haus will have to provide enough appeal to draw people from Buchanan Street and through their doors. This is what exactly mum and I did during a trip to the January sales – well, we all need sustenance after all!
Doner Haus was pretty empty when we arrived and, although a few more tables arrived whilst we were eating, it stayed this way throughout our visit. This is a shame, not least because the food was pretty good!
We placed our wine order (a very nice bottle of merlot) and decided on our meal – a Checkpoint Cheesy for mum and The Mustafa for me. Both were selected from the Berlin Kebaps section of the menu, and served in a pida. The Checkpoint Cheesy boasted mozzarella and cheddar melted over the mix of beef and turkey döner meat, streaky bacon, onions and chilli sauce. The meat was tender and not at all greasy, as you might expect from döner. The chilli sauce did have a spicy kick to it, but it also had a lovely tomato flavour. Mum did comment that the cheeses had disappeared in texture, melting into the combination of meat and onions below, however the flavour was still present.
My pida was well filled with succulent chicken schwarma, chargrilled courgette, onion and peppers, salad, mint, coriander, harissa seasoning, chilli sauce, garlic sauce and, finally, feta. Overflowing with flavour, the two sauces melded to create a spicy, savoury base upon which the other ingredients sat. The creamy, tangy feta was the perfect contrast to the soft, salty meat and fresh, crunchy salad.
Our only niggle with our kebaps was that they were a little on the cool side, a problem I’ve experienced in other “gourmet” kebab restaurants. If Doner Haus make sure their meat, and any other hot ingredients, are piping hot when served then they will elevate their dishes to a higher level.
We didn’t need to worry about the heat of our Kreuzberg Fries, which were piping hot. The crispy fries had been perfectly cooked in garlic olive oil, giving them a wonderful, moreish umami flavour. The parmesan on top was also nice, although grating it rather than shaving it would allow it to melt more consistently across the fries.
We were very pleasantly surprised by the food at Doner Haus – what had the potential to be greasy, stodgy and limp was in fact full of flavour and a delight to eat. I’d highly recommend Doner Haus as the perfect pit-stop for hungry shoppers at lunchtime – it’s cheap and cheerful food that will fill you up and leave a smile on your face.