It was a familiar Tuesday with our typical topic of conversation, “Where are we eating this week?” After throwing out a couple of names out, the occasional shoulder shrugs and a “Nah, I don’t feel like having that,” we finally decided to visit a place that we had been eyeing for quite some time, but hadn’t yet had the courage to try.
Kabob Guys is located in North McAllen on Nolana Avenue, next to one of our favorite ice cream places in town (we see you Rolling with Cream!). Kebab Guys offers authentic Indian and Pakistani food and boldly claims, in giant neon letters on their window facing the business street “WE BAKE OUR OWN BREAD”.
Owner and general manager, Aamer Aman, is originally from the state of New York but has been living in the Rio Grande Valley for the last 15 years. His main purpose behind opening this new project is to introduce Valley natives to authentic Indian and Pakistani cuisine, which is a breath of fresh air amongst all the Mexican and American restaurants in our area. Aamer was very kind to us when we asked him to give us the breakdown in the differences between Indian and Pakistani food. With great patience and knowledge of all his dishes, he told us, “For the most part, Indian cuisine will be vegetarian. Pakistani has lots of meat”
*while looking at the menu*
Gaby: I want everything, but I am a bit confused.
Trisha: What are you thinking of getting?
Gaby: Well, I’d like to know what Tikka means.
Without any hesitation, Aamer interjects politely
Aamer: Tikka means a piece of cubed meat.
BOOM! Just like that, it all made sense!
There are a variety of dishes offered at Kabob Guys and, because we take our roles as journalists very seriously, we dove deep into our new found territory, ordered Vegetable Samosas (crisp and light puff pastry stuffed with seasoned potatoes and green peas) as a starter and, based on the owner’s recommendation, the Gobi Manchurian. While both dishes were delicious, we were blown away by the latter of the two appetizers. We could not believe that cauliflower with garlic, ginger, flour, tomato sauce, bell pepper and onion would ever taste SO good!
For the main courses, we ordered the vegetarian dish Palak Paneer (cottage cheese in spinach gravy with a side of rice) and the Mixed Kabob (chicken, beef, lamb and shrimp). Our honorary Dishin’ It gal and sidekick (who shall, by choice, remain nameless) went all in and opted for the buffet.
The restaurant’sfood follows halal meat practices. Literally meaning “permissible” in Arabic, halal refers to what is allowed or lawful in traditional Islamic law. It is frequently applied to permissible food and drinks. The two biggest samples of non-halal items are pork products and alcoholic beverages. Now while some of you may be thinking, “But Gaby and Trisha, what will I ever do without some good pork and a refreshing spiked beverage in my life?” Don’t fret! Kabob Guys have plenty of meat options that will definitely satisfy your inner carnivore. As for beverages, make sure to order their Peshawari Green Tea (hot green tea with cardamom, Masala Chai (black tea and spices) or a Mango Lassi (mango puree mixed with yogurt, milk and sugar).
Kabob Guys is open Monday through Sunday 11:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m. and are located at 137 West Nolana Avenue, Suite 137, McAllen, TX 78501. Take advantage of their $9.99 buffet all day. Kids under 9 years old eat free every Tuesday. For more information you can call them at (956) 627-3893, visit www.kabobguysmcallen.com or follow them on their social media platforms @kabobguysmcallen.
Gaby Jones and Trisha Watts work hand-in-hand with the service industry. Jones is in charge of craft and imported beer for L&F Distributors-South Texas and Watts is a freelance writer specializing in the marketing of the service industry. Each week they will have a new adventure and provide an opinion on multiple locations throughout the Rio Grande Valley. They can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.