Wrocław's street food options have improved dramatically in recent years. There's still one thing that's missing however – a decent kebab shop. Lokantka Kebab, a Tunisian run kebab house near Pasaż Grunwaldzki, unfortunately isn't the answer. That said, they probably still do the best doner in the area, which is a good enough reason to be paying a visit.
Finding an old school Turkish kebab house certainly isn't an easy task in Poland. Even in the country's capital, Warsaw, many Turks will tell you there's no place you can find yourself good kebab. Here in Wroclaw it's the same, and Turkish people here have even been known to drive to Berlin to satisfy their craving for some proper Turkish food.
Wrocław's 'kebabs' have been heavily influenced by one of the city's own creations. The humble snack named 'knysza', famously sold in huge quantities at the old train station, is basically a kebab without the meat. That might sound like a crazy idea for us 3am doner munchers, but the dish sells well and is still being served today. When globalisation eventually waved its wand on the city, 'gyros' landed and eventually became incorporated into the knysza to make what was effectively a Polish kebab. While that may be tasty enough after a bottle or two of vodka, for others it just doesn't match up to a Turkish or Greek style kebab with hot sauce.
For years in Wroclaw it's been tough to find such a thing, and kebab houses in general appear to be on the slide right now. So when I heard of Lokantka kebab via a student blog, I jumped at the chance to check it out.
The first test for many kebab purists is to see if the meat is being cut using a traditional kebab knife or with one of the run of the mill cutting machines. Unfortunately Lokantka had the latter, but in truth very few kebab places don't nowadays.
One of the refreshing things on offer at Lokantka was the option to order a lamacun kebab. Lamacun is often branded as Turkish Pizza, as it is a dish made using relatively thin based bread that typically comes topped with tomatoes. After coming out from the oven this is usually folded in two and eaten on the street. Here at Lokantka the lamacun was instead used as wrap for the kebab, which consisted of vegetables, white cheese, meat and sauce.
Was it the real deal? As someone who has no right to consider themselves a doner expert, I patiently await comment from Wrocław's Turkish citizens (please comment if you have tried it folks). My observations were however, that the doner meat wasn't particularly anything special. That said, the bread, spices, cheese, sauce, vegetables and meat came together rather nicely. This was a kebab that at least had a grain of authenticity, and one that is easily a cut above what the likes of Nynek serve up. Saying that having eaten the kebab sober also strengthens the statement.
Located in the student district nearby Rondo Reagan and Pasaż Grunwaldzki, Lokantka looks to have found themselves a nice little spot too. It's easy to imagine a few students heading for a cheeky kebab after a few beers, and it's no surprise students receive a 20% discount.
All in all then, it would be an overstatement to say Lokantka has brought the taste of Istanbul to out doorstep. Even so, they still probably have the best kebabs in the area. So if you're badly craving a doner, be sure to give this place a try.
Lokantka Kebab, ul. Piastowska 23