Food Critic Takes His Own Kebab To Tear Apart Salt Bae’s Restaurant

by : Emily Brown on : 17 Oct 2021 12:26
Food Critic Takes His Own Kebab To Tear Apart Salt Bae's RestaurantJay Rayner/nusr_et/Instagram

A food critic proved he didn’t need to step inside Salt Bae’s restaurant to share his scathing opinions of it, opting instead for a cheap kebab outside its grand entrance. 

Turkish chef Nusret Gökçe, aka Salt Bae, made headlines again recently after first rising to fame in a viral video in which he was seen embodying the word ‘extra’ as he sprinkled salt on to a steak.


The more recent attention has come following the opening of his Nusr-Et Steakhouse in Knightsbridge, London, where an order of a steak and chips will set you back hundreds of pounds.

There’s definitely better things to spend your money on, so food critic Jay Rayner decided not to eat at Salt Bae’s restaurant while reviewing it, and instead took his own table, chair and tablecloth to set up outside.

Instead of tucking in to one of the ‘stupidly expensive steaks’, some of which he noted are wrapped in gold leaf before being ‘flogged to people who should know better’, Rayner enjoyed a lamb shawarma kebab from ‘the legendary Kebab Kid’ in Parsons Green.


This decision was based not only on the fact that a meal at Nusr-Et Steakhouse would require a hefty budget, but also because ‘food wrapped in gold will literally taste of nothing, at least at first.’

In his review of the restaurant for The Observer, Rayner sarcastically explained: ‘Weird as it may sound, I like my food to taste of something. Which is why I decide to get mine from Kebab Kid.’

The critic used his experience ordering the cheap and cheerful kebab to highlight the absurdity of Salt Bae’s food-related antics, explaining that just like the Turkish chef, ‘the woman serving me here has a long knife’.


‘She doesn’t wait for me to get my phone out before using it efficiently to slice the meat. She also sprinkles salt on the kebab from a shaker, like a normal person who isn’t thinking about Instagram,’ he continued.

Rayner went on to discuss the aftermath of a meal at Salt Bae’s restaurant in an eye opening description in which he pointed out ‘gold leaf will pass straight through the body’.

Rounding off his review, he said: ‘So let me leave you with this image: Salt Bae’s customers, the morning after the night before, getting off the throne, looking down and clocking that all their money has bought them is a bunch of glittering turds.’


If that doesn’t make you think twice about spending hundreds on a steak, I don’t know what will.

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University and went on to contribute to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming Senior Journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news, trending stories and longer form features.

Topics: Food, Now


The Observer
  1. The Observer

    Kebab Kid, London: ‘Take-away as a cult’ – restaurant review