Shawarma Shuwaikh

Post by Mark

Tonight I invited myself to Shawarma Shuwaikh, a new shawarma place that’s opening up soon. The place actually belongs to a friend of mine, Bader Alsalem who also happens to be Basil Alsalem’s brother (the guy behind OFK, Slider Station, Burger Boutique etc..). I was supposed to pass by on Wednesday with Marzouq and some other friends but I couldn’t wait that long and headed there right after my gym a few hours ago.

It’s a small place that’s very nicely designed with one wall setup with screens playing different videos and another wall featuring some art and mirrors. The menu is small with around 8 sandwiches, 7 being either beef or chicken shawerma and the last being a halloum sandwich. They also have fries and drinks. The sandwiches are split up into groups based on if they come in Lebanese bread, Sammoun (hotdog bun) or Sajj. I ended up ordering the Shawerma Gass which is their regular beef shawerma in sammoun, a Shawerma 1961 which comes in a sajj bread with chicken, roca, fries, onion strips and chili ranch sauce and also had a cup of fries as well.


The food reminded me a lot of the shawerma from Falafel & Co which is a really good thing since I used to love their shawermas before they closed down. I also think their prices are very reasonable ranging from 500fils to KD1.000 for the specials like Shawerma 1961. The place is still NOT open so you can’t pass by and try it out just yet. They’re planning to hopefully open next week and once I get a confirmed date I’ll post it with their exact location so stay tuned.

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49 comments, add your own...

  1. Chris says:

    sounds promising! what is roca?

  2. diesel says:


  3. Meshx86 says:

    “Tonight I invited myself”

    For Ever Alone Lvl: Over 99999

    /for ever alone

  4. JT says:

    I remember a time when a shawarma used to cost just 100files, good days…

  5. ^B says:

    Maybe it’s just me, but I’m honestly sick of the saturation of restaurants in Kuwait and the perpetually-unending stream of new and overpriced hipster-fueled, next-habba eateries popping up. How many variations of a shawarma can we get? Pizza spin-offs? Burger concoctions? Sushi twists?

    Ugh. Build it and they will come.

    • Mark says:

      Stop eating and they’ll stop building.

      • ^B says:

        I wasn’t looking for an antagonistic response; rather, I just think that there’s more we can focus on rather than more and more restaurants. It’s like the cupcake craze – everyone’s doing it, but how about something different altogether?

        On a more general note, I am EXTREMELY supportive of Kuwaitis spearheading and working tirelessly on their own concepts. We’re a very creative and energetic generation and it’s about time that things start changing to reflect that. Again though: I just believe that there’s more to us than just restaurants.

    • aaa says:

      I hate the “hipster” defense. A lot of these places have great food and there’s nothing wrong with having a choice in what or where you want to eat.

      No, let’s all get in line at the soup kitchen while the soup nazi tells us what we are allowed to eat.

  6. Mathai says:

    I’ve never had a Gyro or a Doner sandwich, wonder when we’ll get one of those here.

    Btw whats in the Shawerma 1961?

    • Chris says:

      I was about to order a gyro .. until I read the contents :P

    • aaa says:

      Gyro is a worse shawarma, Doner is just a kebab sandwich

      • abdou says:

        Gyro is not really a shawarma. Doner Kebab is closer to the shawarma. Gyro is served on pita, while shwarma is served on khabus, saj, samoun etc. Gyro uses tzaki sauce, while shwermas use tahina. Gyros are different in texture as well as compared to the doner/rolling meat.

  7. Abdul says:

    This looks like a really creative place, tastefully done from the photos with a menu that caters to a local palette. In response to ^B, I think why you are seeing so many small estabishments because Kuwaitis are trying to make money outside their boring humdrum unchallenging ministry jobs and trying to become self-sufficient. What I don’t understand is why there is not a huge demonstration of young people in front of Parliament demanding them to implement the development plan. Really, haven’t they been embarrassed enough in the Gulf? Everyone is on a development path except Kuwait – go figure?

    • Baqdonis says:

      Is there a plan to begin with? :P How can you have a 5 year plan if the government & parliament change every 1.5-2 years? You have to get rid of one to make things move.

      Other GCC countries either have no parliament or have a 1/2 elected parliament. That’s why they can go ahead with their development plan.

      • aaa says:

        Exactly. Every time the parliament is dissolved a lot of the ministries halt work, but the parliament is never worth keeping up.

        • amer says:

          So what you are saying is that it is better not to have a Parliament, but let me play devil’s advocate here, why don’t you vote on development projects outside of the Parliament? Are they really qualified to vote on this 3B Development Plan? The answer is no, they are too busy fueling their political agenda’s. Another point, why not stage the grilling outside Parliament in a forum with the Congressional Court present? Do you get my point? You can’t continue this way, this country will nver move forward and you don’t have someone who controls the countries moves like in the UAE. In the words of a famous dictator,”With democracy, you don’t get anything done. Better to have one guy doing the wrong thing, but at least getting it done. Then you can’t complain. “

      • amer says:

        They voted it down – you should be MAD!

  8. Ash says:

    God damn! ONE KD for a shawerma!? That better be a shawerma three times the size of a normal one. Speaking of which, why didn’t you take a picture of the shawerma you had? (My theory is you’re just looking out for a “friend” with this nice review.)

  9. Joe says:

    I really like all these small “boutique” restaurants like Ubon, En Mexico etc. that keep popping up in Kuwait. The large franchise chains are over represented in Kuwait and all their greasy food tastes the same!

  10. sooli says:

    i think now its safe to say that the restaurant-to-Kuwaiti-citizen ratio is 1:1

  11. Kurt says:

    1 KD shwarma!! OMG!! Gourmet or not, that’s going to encourage others to overprice their shwarmas.

    Somethings are just meant to be left alone! I will open a pepsi restaurant! And pour the pepsi in a glass lined silver cup! I will charge 5kd per drink and 10% service charge!

    What next? Gourmet khoubous for 1KD ?

    • Mark says:

      You can have a regular shawerma for 500fils, the 1kd one is their special.

    • Asmaa says:

      That will not work, people will buy their own Pepsi for those who want to, and others will flock over to your place, business is not as easy as coming up with an idea, one has to be consistent and I wish them well.

  12. Proud Kuwaiti says:

    Shawarma is so political. As for the ridiculous prices by Kuwaiti-owned restaurants, they will always charge tons of money for generic food as long as there are people who are willing to throw their money. I’m all for creativity and supporting my fellow compatriots, but not when it’s clear that they are overcharging me for hipster food.

    • Mark says:

      i’m really not understanding this negativity. How are you complaining about something you have no clue about neither have you tried?

      How much does a shawerma at Badar Al Badoor cost? 300fils.
      How much does a shawerma at villa fayrouz express cost? 850fils.

      So he’s selling the regular shawerma for 500fils and that’s over charging?

  13. Proud Kuwaiti says:

    It’s not negativity, Mark. I’m criticizing the concept of overcharging in these restaurants. While I applaud them for doing something creative and competing with the international franchises, yet I find it funny that all these Kuwaiti-based joints overcharge just because they worked on it. I don’t need to try it to criticize it. I’ve seen it in all these restaurants, e.g. Choowy Goowy, Vinny’s, Slider Station, Me’armisha, Open Flame Kitchen, etc. Even the prices of products sold at 52 Degrees are sky-high. Believe me, I’m proud of this creative and daring generation of entrepreneurs and I’m not a hater. I just find it over the top that just because a Kuwaiti owns the place, s/he can charge all s/he wants. I make good money but I’m not wasting it for this consumer-hungry culture. I know! Nobody is forcing me to go there. I’m just dissecting this “corporate” business cuz it’s spreading like a disease.

    • SarahA says:

      @ Proud Kuwaiti – Your food prices are WAY TOO HIGH and your government has done NOTHING to curb prices that is the problem. Your neighbor, the UAE’s Ministry of Economy has launched a new electronic system to monitor the prices of 200 consumer products on a daily basis. This system is connected to the ports and customs in the country with the ministry and major retailers, enabling officials to “counter any attempts at potential monopoly”. The system has the capacity to monitor the prices of 200 commodities on a daily basis. The electronic system would help to stabilise consumer prices in the UAE and could in Kuwait. Most goods that are monitored by this system includes common foodstuffs such as rice, wheat, poultry, sugar, milk, tea, meat, eggs, oils and fish.
      Your government needs to take a trip to the UAE with a pen and paper and take notes!!!!

  14. Realist says:

    Prices are high, yes that’s a fact here. However what people clearly do not understand is the concept of inflation. Before looking at the selling price, look at the underlying cost such as raw materials, equipment, salaries and rent. It’s not the 80’s anymore. If you want cheap products then you need to compromise on quality etc.
    The lack of understanding of the concept of inflation in this country is one of the reasons why it’s crumbling down. Go line up for the next government giveaway.

    • More Realistic says:

      Your goverment is not doing anything to control the market inflation on basic commodies as listed above from the greed of the merchants. When I purchase food items in the Carrefour in the Emirates Mall and then buy the same product at the Carrefour in the Avenues at a much higher price, that tells me that there are no controls in the market. Ramadan is coming – let’s see if the Kuwait government does anything in comparison to a UAE government who has implemented controls and penalizes merchants for violating price ceilings and will control the prices in Ramadan. This also affects restaurant prices, plus many of these restaurants are buying out of Sultan Center retail and that’s absurd.

  15. the real says:

    What a dum set of arguments. If you don’t like the prices, then don’t visit the establishments. It’s that simple.

    Kuwait has sadly fallen by the wayside thanks to it’s Parliament, which has done nothing whilst all our neighbors have eclipsed us economically.

    We were once the jewel in the crown, now we’re just looked down upon as backward, argumentative and non-productive nation.

    Such a shame. All the money in the world and achieved nothing with it.

    Thank god for all the local restaurants – without them we’d be force fed McDonald’s or some other uninspiring shitty American franchise.

    To all my fellow Kuwaiti’s using their brains to create in an environment that promotes dead weight, I salute you.

  16. Kurt says:

    Slow your roll! Mark posted about this new restaurant and some folks chimed in way off the subject and ruined the whole intent. Mark chose his words carefully and the post was breif and to the point. We all have choices or options and if we are not satisfied then we can move on. However, let’s not get carried away with political economic rants. The post was about a new restaurant!

  17. I3lami says:

    to be honest, it’s stupid!! it’s like we’re lacking of ideas! what should we do.. oh yes! open a shawharma restaurant! it’s simple there’s chicken and beef and that’s it and under what cuisine does the restaurant falls into!
    it’s just a habba or maybe why my brother owns a restaurant and i dont!!
    Shawarma at a local restaurant cost 250fils in khaitan and farwaniya and it tastes better than villa fayrouz and kurdou ones!!!!!
    and about the expenses and inflation!! the meat price is supported by the goverment, the salaries like he is hiring kuwaitis. you can get 5-6 workers and pay them 100~120KD each and their living expenses are on them!!! that’s nothing if some one had a concept with a future plan!! but looking at this overused concept it make me recall the Cupcake habba and redbull habba! something cheap and can be done in no time. and it’s obvious when he took care of the style and decoration inside the restaurant and had tv’s to support the atmosphere.
    i’m not against the idea of opening a restaurant! but please we’re not fools think of something new and unique!!
    something no one thought of it before.

  18. bob says:

    Kuwaiti shawarmas are so good, I would pay to learn how to prepare & cook BUT rather, PROMOTE it to the world . from BKK , Thailand

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