One day, the Boy and I were in Hohhot, and we stopped to get a bite to eat from a stand on the street. A huge hunk of marinated meat was on a rotating skewer next to a flame, and the vendor sliced off meat shavings with a huge knife and piled them into a flaky bread pocket with some unidentified vegetables. I don't know if we were really hungry from walking around temples all day in the alternately hot and cold desert winds, or if the food was just that great, but we talked about how much we wished American fast food was like that. Well, minus the open flame and giant sword-knife, of course.
Chicken shwarma at Jasmin is exactly that kind of fast food. Did I mention that this is also the kind of fast food that has several kinds of fresh salad? Jasmin is as quick as a usual fast-food place, only you can have a gyro or falafel, hummus and salad in the time it would take to get a hamburger with a strip of warm lettuce on top.
Oh, right, the environment.
Just like our favorite Cary restaurant, Havana Grill, the Jasmin on Walnut Street still has a drive-through window from when it used to be something else. It's like a McDonalds, but with every hint of that creepy clown gone and replaced with bright paintings, fabrics and Mediterrean artwork. There's even a hookah set up in a corner table.
Food comes on plastic plates, on a plastic tray you serve yourself plasticware, straws and napkins from a repurposed container still labeled cream and lemons. The raspberry iced tea is good but unfortunately all fountain drinks come in unrecyclable styrofoam cups. After our meal, the Boy ordered his usual Turkish coffee, which came in a tiny painted mug, on a flowered metal tray.
Overall, a great alternative to a burger and fries, but not going to replace La Shish or Bosphorus for us.