The desserts were really good the first time we went and their service was so so. the second time the service was horrendous so I never went back. this was 2011/2012-ish :( so i'm wondering if that had anything to do with the closure. sad to see a unique place go. i still occasionally talk about that crummy service to the person i went their with though, it was really bad.
Oh boy, here we go...
It's been three years since I've taken a look at a disappointing review/editorial from Tucson Weekly, then lo and behold, here I am seeing it happen all over again. Is this review seriously about Shish Kebab House? 21+ years 1993 established Shish Kebab House? The same Shish Kebab House which periodically has a full house of company eager for some gyros, kebabs and all sorts of insanely good meals? THE SAME Shish Kebab House where pretty much everyone who's been disappointed in Mediterranean/Middle Eastern food here in Tucson seem to always and somehow find their way at its doorstep?
Yeah, it's tucked away in a little corner of Broadway Parc Plaza just across the street from Park Place Mall, and it is one of the best damn places you can go to for Mediterranean/Middle Eastern food. It is a multicultural gem where ethnicities across the entire spectrum come to enjoy! The Shish Kebab House is a bonafide melting pot where everyone in Tucson can get together and enjoy a common universal: REALLY. GOOD. FOOD.
All these previous comments pretty much roll in this restaurant's favor anyway, because clearly something is not jibing if and when the majority of the time I hear about this place, there's nothing but positivity. I remember not too long ago when the gem show was here in town and I ran into these Iranians who were visiting during the time hosting a venue, and they told me about how they'd been to all sorts of other places in town, desperate for their own particular middle eastern palette... and then they found the Shish Kebab House. I caught up with these guys again and they had nothing but good things to say. I asked them how it was? They took a moment to collect themselves as they laughed, smiled and looked at one another. One of them looked like he was about to cry, and then one of them passionately spoke out for rest of them, "The best food we have tried in town."
I could tell everyone more stories about these sort of run-ins and accolades about SKH, but I'm pretty sure as more comments pour in they'll most likely be in SKH's favor, doing my job for me.
Also, I can't believe that there's an issue with the rice, or rather, the amount you get, compared to the rest of the meal. In the Middle Eastern culture, much like many other cultures, RICE is an indispensable part of the meal and often comes en masse because it helps stretch out the rest of the meal, it's not an excuse or a ploy to just add quantity to the meal, it's just the way it is because THAT'S THE WAY IT IS. As a Filipino, I know exactly where this is coming from, because it is the same exact thing. And I've been around enough Hindus to know that's also true! "Rice goes with everything!" If there's a culture out there that doesn't use some sort of carb, fiber or starch to help stretch out a meal, by all means tell me and educate everyone else in the process. And do not come back to me talking about how people should watch what they're eating, being on a diet or that carbs are terrible for you--YOU ARE GOING TO A RESTAURANT! You are there to indulge in what that place has to offer, because it is doing their best at what it does!
This review is also unfair and significantly disproportionate because it isn't covering all the bases of the restaurant. Of the two occasions visited, what time did they go to the Shish Kebab House? At no point is the lunch hour specials mentioned, and I know they keep a rather large sign outside in the front during those hours when it happens (from opening till 2pm I believe...); so either the reviewer dismissed it completely, didn't go during lunch hour, or decided to pick out a majority of the "pricier" items from the main menu. I mean if this is gonna get into the whole "cost effective" aspect of it all, why not bring it up?
Talking about the dated interior and dingy aspect of the restaurant; you know who I ran into while I was there not too long ago? A couple who was visiting Tucson and hadn't been in town for over 10 years and showed up just to see if the Shish Kebab House was still around. To their amazement, it was. And it was, from their lips, "exactly the way they remembered it," and they didn't complain about it at all. In fact, it seemed to put them in a state of wonderment. Like stepping back in time and remembering a point in history that made sense or stirred up feelings of endearment. Before the couple even settled in, they wandered around, smiling, pointing out at items and things they hadn't seen in so long, blissful in disbelief that the Shish Kebab House remained at its core. They even asked if the place was under new management, to which I was happy to reply, "No sir and ma'am, this place is still under the same people who found it."
Never have I heard the words, "REALLY?" be said about a particular location with such amazement in my current life.
Some people, actually, MANY, have fallen in love with this place, long before anyone could make judgments and have practically grown up with this restaurant. We're talking about 21+ years of commitment to pleasing Tucson here. Frequent customers who have in turn become friends with the family, coming in asking about the owners' son and daughters. Regulars coming in knowing exactly what they want, and have been ordering the SAME dish for years--and out of some of these people, some of them don't even know what else is on the menu because they've been dedicated to that one or two dishes for that long. If that isn't dedication? I don't know what is...
I'm gonna stop right here though, because I'm pretty sure I don't need to go on... after all that's said and done here, yeah, this is one's person perspective, a rather opinionated and short-lived one that barely even scratches the surface of a restaurant that has pleased so many, for so long, while others in this town have packed up and disappeared. Tucson has plenty of "originals" here, I'm surprised the Shish Kebab House isn't one of them.
"...cannot claim any other point of view except that of butthurt childishness because they perceive "their" restaurant as being attacked."
You don't seem to understand, "Not a Rancho Snob." Those who have commented are not being childish because we think our restaurant has been "attacked." I am commenting and disagreeing with the writer because she wrote a poor and inaccurate review. Why didn't she mention the belly dancing? What exterior was she expecting for a restaurant in a strip mall? Also, unless she wants to go to Chipotle or McDonalds to get fast service, I don't believe she should be complaining about the wait time. "Good things come to those who wait."
I cannot "claim any other view" because over the numerous times I have been to the Shish Kebab House, I have never had a bad experience. Why would I advocate against something I like?
Burnie: As far as I have seen, no one said "This article makes me sad/mad/depressed." I didn't see any feelings in these comments.
Just to clarify, I meant food and reviews are subjective based on one's tastes, while remaining objective in the experience. Not based on one's feelings, as the comments have been.
Burnie, I would agree that it would seem that most food reviews seem to be subjective on Yelp!. Most of the reviews I've read here at least try to remain objective in the delivery. Most of the comments, as you pointed out are clearly subjective in favor of the restaurant reviewed because they have lost all objectivity and cannot claim any other point of view except that of butthurt childishness because they perceive "their" restaurant as being attacked. I read the review from an objective point of view and think the restaurant would be a good place to try. It's not in spite of the review, it's because of the review.
"This article is purely based on opinion and not facts." Isn't everything to do with food, and in turn, food reviews, subjective?
I do not see the point in this statement
Muddle lime with brown sugar instead of simple syrup...
The family met there today for a lunch out. We were very surprised that its doors were closed. Great concept. Great food. It did not deserve this fate.
I don't have to repeat what others have pointed out by your review. This review seems like it was for another restaurant. Everything you said was completely off. I go to Shish Kebab House almost every week and I love it! It is honestly my favorite place to eat in Tucson. The food is amazing! The staff is great. What's wrong with the staff being young? Sorry that you have to wait for your food to actually be cooked. If you want fast crappy food, I'm sure there is a Taco Hell near by.
I have never been disappointed eating at the Shish Kebab house. If the author of this review doesn't want to eat there, it just means a table will be open sooner if they do not attend. :)
I have been going to the Shish Kebab House for a number of years now and have always been more than satisfied with the locale (dingy? just where were you actually?), the service, (I have nothing against being served by young people), and food. Others have already pointed out your errors in discussing your orders.
I just want to say that it does take a bit longer than to get a Big Mac, but that's what happens when they prepare your meal after you ordered it. It's worth the wait.
Shish Kebab House is hands down one of my favorite restaurants in Tucson! The motabal is reason enough to go, seriously it is one of top 5 favorite foods, ever. I also am quite partial to family run restaurants over chains and I love the vib of Shish Kebab, the belly dancing is such a wonderful touch on the weekends but I love going in for a quick lunch during my work week as well.
Like you said, "I certainly do not profess to be an expert." You're right, because you clearly don't know what good middle eastern food is all about. Out of all the several other middle eastern restaurants that I have experienced, nothing can compare to Shish Kebab House! The best and most flavorful food I have ever had!
Your article is way to long and all you focused on was......time and being overwhelmed. All I have to say is they have EXCELLENT and DELICIOUS food!!! I'm from southern Cali and when I visit Tucson. I make a pit stop just for the food. Best middle eastern FOOD!
This article is purely based on opinion and not facts. I have gone to the Shish Kebab House numerous times and thoroughly enjoy their food and the atmosphere. They serve the best Mediterranean food I have ever tasted. Their pita bread is always hot and fresh, the falafel is to die for, and I always get the delicious classic, the Gyro Boy.
Why you didn't mention the Belly Dancing that takes place every weekend, boggles my mind. I don't know of any other Middle Eastern restaurant that features such a cultural experience.
You also complain about the "dingy" and "less than inviting" exterior. Most family-owned businesses that are absolutely delicious are hole in the walls. (Ex. Poco and Mom's) If you wanted an exterior that really wowed you, maybe you should have gone across the way and eaten at Peter Piper Pizza.
Case and Point, your article is merely a poor opinion. Shish Kebab House has a 4.4 rating for a reason. They serve the best Mediterranean food in Tucson, have great family service and provide an evening you won't forget and will most likely go back to for more.
That is not the Shish Kebab House I know. I frequented this restaurant when I lived in the Tucson area and still dine there whenever I visit Tucson. The restaurant is family-owned and extremely welcoming. The staff is young, but very polite and knowledgeable about the menu. The menu has numerous options. The food is comparable to any Mediterrean restaurant across the country. I also spent considerable time in the Middle East and Shish Kebab House is on par with my expectations. This review has no merit in my book. I recommend others to give this restaurant a try without an eye to be critical or negative prior to walking in the doors. You will not be disappointed.
To the writer of this review: This review clearly is wrong and the writer doesn't know what REAL Mediterrean food tastes like. Motabal is hummus with eggplant! Maybe you need to research the food before you write and make comments. Yes the staff is young, what do you expect middle aged employees? As for decorations, if you don't want to see something authentic, then maybe you should go downtown. Oozie is a rice based dish and not all of the menu is expensive. You purposely ordered expensive dishes to make the restaurant look bad. Rude!!
Don't fret it, Shish Kebab House. I started dining at your restaurant because of a shining review from a friend. I went and immediately loved it. My family loves your food as well. Your service has always been prompt and the food is delicious.
It was a very fun concept, but the trouble with Something Sweet is that they didn't have good street visibility, if you ask me. I remember them as being sandwiched somewhere between Colors and a wholesale tile-flooring outlet. I don't think you could see them from the road, and I don't think they were very well-known beyond the East side. For example, everybody knows that Brooklyn Pizza is down on 4th Ave., and I think everybody knows that Acacia is (was?) at St. Phillip's Plaza. Until I drove up to it purely by accident one afternoon, though, I couldn't have placed Something Sweet for the life of me. Also, I don't remember them advertising outside of the Yellow Pages.
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