What is Europe’s answer to the Shawarma? Doner Kebab or Kebap, however you spell it. As I was born and raised in Dubai, I grew up eating shawarmas. I would have had tried shawarmas from atleast 20 different places if not more and there is no substitute for a good shawarma. Period!
Having said that a Doner Kebab has its own uniqueness which differentiaties it from a shawarma. The meat quality and bread quality is way different. I must admit I might be developing a certain liking towards the Doner.
Hence, when I was invited for trying the food at O’Doner (located at Golden Mile, Palm Jumeirah), I did not hesitate a bit. O’Doner imports the best quality meat possible for its dishes and ensures that the bread served it freshly baked. So what you get is a good quality Doner every single time.
There were a lot of other foodies who were invited to and the table got full pretty fast. The meal started with a welcome lemon with mint drink. Refreshing for sure.
Next on, we were served some sweets (yes, before the food even came in). These sugar powdered candy type sweets were pretty similar to some Turkish delights I have had in the near past. Needless to say, they were good.
Whilst the owner of the restaurant explained the concept of his startup, the salads were prepared and served to us. We were served with 3 types of salads – Rocca Salad (the veggie one), Chicken Doner salad and Veal Doner salad.
I liked both the meat based salads especially the chicken one which had very tender and juicy pieces of chicken along with Corn, Cucumber, Carrots, Tomato, mixed Lettuce, shredded Mozzarella topped with a tangy citrus dressing. The Veal Doner salad comes with an olive balsamic & pomegranate dressing (love Balsamic).
By this time I was all set for the mains; luckily they arrived soon. The mains consisted of Chicken Doner, Beef Doner, Kashar Peynirli Pide, Falafel and Iskender Doner.
The Kashar Peynirli Pide looks very similar to a Pizza and tastes similar too. The difference being that the bread is much thinner. I liked this dish, particularly due to the Kashkaval cheese used.
The Beef and Chicken Doners were 1 metre long doners cut into portions good for one. This type of serving is perfect for large groups and probably for a get together. The bread used in the Doners is freshly baked in front of you and there is no doubt that it is soft and warm. The meat is also high quality and is juicy. All these points make the doner a real treat.
The Falafel for me was just about okay. I have eaten so much Falafel growing up that I am really critical about it. I found it to be a bit more crispy than it should be. This made the outer layer a bit hard to bite into and also meant that the inner bit of the Falafel was a bit more dry. However the bread served with it was great.
My favourite main course was the Meat or Beef Iskender Doner. The meat so tender and succulent that makes it the perfect dish.
I was already stuffed with all the heavy food but I knew what was coming next (Desserts ofcourse) and had to make sure I was ready for it.
We were served two desserts – the Antep Baklava and the Hatay Kunafe.
The Antep Baklava is basically filo sheets filled with Pistachio accompanied with Maras vanilla ice cream. The dessert looked so inviting that anyone would start craving for it.
The Hatay Kunafe was decent; probably making it a bit more cheesy would help. Appearance wise it stands no chance when comparing it with “The mighty Baklava”.
There was also an option of having some Turkish ice cream but I skipped it since I was already full.
I however did not say no to the Turkish tea to end the meal. It was the best possible way to digest all that food.
My overall experience at O’Doner was a good one. The restaurant or joint might be a bit far for me but I would probably visit them for the Iskender Doner and maybe try the Turkish ice cream once I am there.
I was invited to try the food at O’Doner, therefore I have not provided the prices of the dishes or any ratings for the restaurant. All opinions expressed are solely based on my experience and are not influenced by the restaurant or its management in any way.
Location: Golden Mile 1 (Near Spinneys), Palm Jumeirah
Contact No.: +971 4 2769833