Giles Coren’s Times review makes Kentish Town kebab shop a phenomenon
A review by The Times food critic Giles Coren has turned a Kentish Town kebab shop into a place of food worship.
Kebabs are the new black. Who knew? Giles Coren, it seems.
The spinning doners of E. Mono in Kentish Town Road have been propelled to superstar status after the local boy food critic gave the kebab shop a gushing 8 out of 10 review in The Times magazine just before Christmas.
The critic waxed lyrical about the, erm, beautiful greaseproof paper, the lovingly restored Victorian shop front, and how the kebab shop is “without question, the hippest place to be seen at the moment”.
He exalted: “The first time I saw it... I walked straight in and bought a doner on the basis of its exterior beauty alone.
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“And it was the best kebab I had in years. Beautifully sweet and fatty, full of fresh lamby flavours, great garlic sauce…”
The chicken was “unbelievable”, and so he went on.
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E. Mono has been delighted with the attention, which has attracted new customers from as far afield as Oxford.
“Basically Giles has helped us a lot,” said the proprietor’s son Michael Ustun, as he carved chicken off the sizzling spit.
“I was shocked, people rush in to the shop really excited.”
Customers have also been lured away from north London kebab strongholds like Manor House – despite the fact that the shop only opened eight weeks ago.
Sure enough, when Heathman visited, a tattered copy of The Times magazine lay proudly on the counter.
Several photocopies of the review were also in the window, without ruining the clean lines on which Coren was so keen.
“Most of our customers come because of that guy,” said Mr Ustun. “But maybe it’s the quality of the meat that has people coming back and queuing.”
E. Mono clearly prides itself on preparing its own doners.
“My father has been a kebab man for 20 years,” said Mr Ustun. “He knows what customers want. Most kebab shops buy their meat from a factory.”