Wrap it up.
Is it shawarma? Kebab? Shabab? Confusion reigns when discussing the Turkish treat, but the gist is this: it’s delicious meat served in a char-grilled wrap. With that question (sort of) answered, we got to wondering: who makes the best, uh, whatever you want to call it in the city? Read on to find out. Oh, and one caveat—we played it safe and went with chicken. Prefer lamb? Let us know your favs.
Turkish Döner Kebab and Pizza WINNER!
The brand: Little more than a shack located next to the train tracks beneath BTS Phaya Thai, this brand doesn’t offer much in the way of media impressions.
The price: B95/small
The taste: Honestly, considering some of the other names on the list, we were surprised to find that this was our favorite. But there was some special alchemy going on in that pleasantly spicy sauce, tender chicken, fresh onion and perfectly crisped wrap. A win’s a win anyway.
The verdict: Dark horse
Beneath BTS Phaya Thai, next to the 7-Eleven, 063-014-5713
Hummus Heads RUNNER UP!
The brand: It’s not all hummus at this Thonglor joint. The lengthy menu delves deeper into Lebanese fusion, catering to those who are seeking healthy yet hearty meals that go big on flavor.
The price: B130/shawarma chicken wrap
The taste: The wrap itself is blasé, but there’s a whole lot of turmeric on the chicken, not to mention creamy hummus and tangy pickles giving this shawarma some pop. It’s unusual, sure, and that’s bound to upset the purists, but we dig it.
The verdict: A real hum-dinger
Thonglor Soi 10, 097-193-1912
The brand: The newest face in the rotisserie meats game focuses on Berlin-style Turkish döner kebabs served in Berlin-style portions. I.e., massive.
The price: B240/döner chicken durum
The taste: We reckon this beefy son could feed a family of four. The neat grill marks on the humongous wrap and orderliness of the red cabbage, chicken and onions inside suggest this was made under the exacting watch of an honest-to-goodness German. The flavor, however, is pretty muted, although the sauce has a salty kick that we enjoy when we do find it.
The verdict: Das ist gut
28 Sukhumvit Soi 22, fb.com/berlinsdonerkebab
The brand: Long-standing Rawabina serves mighty Lebanese cuisine from its tiny four-table shop on Sukhumvit Soi 23.
The price: B100/shawarma chicken wrap
The taste: Good wrap integrity—a real thing—sets the tone for a relatively solid shawarma redolent of Mediterranean spices. Some knocked it for the very creamy sauce. All agreed that the chicken was too dry.
The verdict: Spice, spice, baby
Sukhumvit Soi 23, next to 108 Shop, 092-820-2828
The brand: One of Bangkok’s best Lebanese restaurants since what seems like forever, Beirut now operates several perennially packed locations across Bangkok.
The price: B100/shawarma chicken sandwich
The taste: We aren’t big fans of the pita they use in lieu of a flour wrap. It’s thick, chewy and distracting. That aside, the pickle inside is a nice surprise. Also a surprise? We can’t taste the sauce.
The verdict: Bring the heat
Various locations, beirut-restaurant.com
The brand: This delivery-focused kebab brand operates in several suburban neighborhoods, from Udom Suk to Lad Phrao to Phet Kasem.
The price: B75/chicken döner kebab
The taste: Questions abound: is the wrap made with butterfly pea flower? If not, then why is it purple? Is that Kewpie we detect? Because it sure tastes like Kewpie. If not, then why does this saucy mess taste so sweet? This is food for desperate backpackers.
The verdict: Khaosan kebab
Various locations, fb.com/kekebabshop