Before each home game this season, ClipperBlog will run “ClipperBlog Eats,” a restaurant recommendation from its resident restaurant reviewer, Ben Mesirow. Below is today’s suggestion:
Street food in LA almost always means tacos, with the occasional pupusa, elote, or bacon-wrapped hot dog for good measure. Those food items so dominate the local street food zeitgeist that it’s easy to forget that in much of the world an entirely different food runs the show – the Doner Kabob.
The Doner, which bears strong resemblance to the Middle Eastern Shawarma and Greek Gyro, is, broadly speaking, meat – lamb, beef, and/or chicken – shaved from a rotating vertical spit and wrapped in a pita-esque bread with vegetables and sauce. There are plenty of excellent places to grab Shawarma and Gyros in LA, but not nearly so many spots for a good Doner. And that is where Spitz comes in.
Founded by two Occidental College grads who fell in love with the street Doners of Europe, Spitz provides a great window into a street cuisine that we don’t see enough in LA. You can get your Doner with feta and pepperoncini, or you can get your Doner with hummus and olives, but if you really want to do it right you should absolutely get the Doner w/Pommes, which comes stuffed with (you guessed it) French fries. It’s a decadent choice, sure, but it adds something special, both a key extra layer of textural contrast and an important hit of deep-fried joy. The beef & lamb blend is excellent, well-spiced and shaved into perfect little sheets, and it’s tough to beat anything wrapped in a pita with garlic aioli.
Though it is based on street food, Spitz is a real restaurant, which means that you can get a salad or fried garbanzo beans on the side, and they have a nice selection of craft beer on tap. The happy hour is quite good, and there are cinnamon-sugar pita strips for dessert. It may not be actual meat on the street, but the Doners at Spitz are still a great addition to the LA street food scene, and a great stop before the game. 371 East 2nd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; www.eatatspitz.com