What started life as a street food stall before becoming a pop-up has opened its first restaurant in a former Pizza Hut.
Not just any Pizza Hut either but one on the center within a building, Dominions House, whose original design was for two extra floors and a French chateau-style roof and domes.
But that was back in 1899 and this is Bristol in 2022, where Berlin-style kebabs are on the menu at Hoba on St Augustine’s Parade.
Recalibrate everything you think you might know about kebabs. All of the sauces, pickles, salads and marinades at Hoba are are made in-house; they only use free range meat from Ruby & White on Whiteladies Road; and all the delicious flavors within every kebab is contained within Turkish bread baked especially for them by Joe’s Bakery on Gloucester Road and delivered by bicycle.
These are all mighty kebabs with a marvellous melange of flavor combinations.
Hoba’s kebabs all come with tahini, pickled cabbage, cucumber and pickled onions.
They range in price from £ 8.50 for the chargrilled cauliflower to £ 10.95 for the ‘Hoba full house’ with chargrilled chicken, spicy beef and roasted cauliflower.
Among the vegan options, the ‘almighty vegan’ with cauliflower, jackfruit, oyster mushroom and crispy onions was an explosion of flavors and textures.
Who would have thought that a kebab could ever taste this good and be healthy too?
Across the other side of the table, a ‘squeaky chicken’ was another example of Hoba at their best, utilizing top quality ingredients and packing so many tastes into every bite: in this case chargrilled chicken, halloumi (to give it that squeak), harissa yogurt and crushed peanuts.
It’s certainly not top of Hoba’s agenda but all of the food that we ordered also looked amazing. Just take a glance above at those loaded fries with halloumi and harissa mayo.
And oh wow does it taste good; the fact that it looks worthy for Instagram is just a bonus. These are dirty fries that deserve the sobriquet of dirrty. Christina Aguilera would approve.
If late-night kebabs in the UK are usually for soaking up excess alcohol, the kebabs at Hoba are all the better accompanied by a beer from St Anne’s-based Lost & Grounded, or if you’re off the booze, a Club-Mate from Germany made from natural South American plant extract.
Within what in an alternative Bristol could have been the ground floor of a French chateau, a glass should be raised to all the team at Hoba. The building may not have its originally planned roof, but these are kebabs that have been elevated to greatness.
Hoba, 23-25 St Augustine’s Parade, Bristol, BS1 4UL
Main photo: Martin Booth
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