There is hardly a more working class food than Döner in Berlin, except the Currywurst maybe. Döner and Currywurst are the two culinary discoveries that Berlin brought to German and international cuisine. And for a reason that I do not fully understand, Brazilians tend to love both. Currywurst, Currywurst-flavored potato chips, Döner, Döner-flavored potato chips – they hit the Brazilian taste right on. Maybe this has to do with the fact, that this wonderful country lacks a sufficient infrastructure of Currywurst and Döner, only a big city like São Paulo seems to be able to offer at least some options (even if they sell Currywurst with Bretzel whereas the whole world knows that you eat Currywurst either with french fries or with an old bun).
And while the city of Santos was going crazy a short while ago over the opening of the first Starbucks Coffee Shop in a Shopping Center – with people waiting in line for an hour to get one of the overpriced and not very tasty coffees) – I was very happy to find a small place just off the heart of Gonzaga, which is Praça da Independencia with Santos first and only Döner! It finally arrived! Of course I had to try it the same day.
While a tax-evading and globally operating company like Starbucks with its products that deny local differences represents a lot of what I think is wrong with capitalism, Mumatz Kebab Döner in Rua Marechal Deodoro number 6 is just right for me. Ok, it’s a franchise, but at the moment it only consists of three stores and their website seems appealingly neglected, mentioning the opening of a new store in Santos „soon“ while it has already been opened over a month ago.
But let’s get to the important information: how is the Döner? I was accompanied by an expert in Döner and Currywurst and we both had to agree, that we were surprised by not only the quality but also the taste and the price of the Döner. The Döner comes as a „Dürüm“ which means with only very flat pancake-like piece of bread and not one of those big chunks. There was a choice between regular Döner, chicken Döner and Falafel, which is more than you sometimes see in Döner shops in Berlin. And while the taste of the french fries was a bit to „arabic“ for my taste, the Döner itself was close to the original. The price was ok, 14 Reais for a Döner (about 4,50 Euros) is not close to how cheap it is in Berlin, but for an „imported speciality“ in Brazil it is fair. A whole menu with french fries and a soft drink is 23 Reais (about 7 Euro).
For a taste of Berlin or a quick-lunch I can recommend it. Without a doubt.