Vegan Meatball Kebab at Doc Suqrue’s in Islands of Adventure

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Universal Orlando sometimes gets accused of having inferior food offerings within the theme parks. Just like at Walt Disney World and SeaWorld Orlando, some quick/counter service places lack quality. In Lost Continent area of Islands of Adventure lives a lower quality quick service location, Doc Sugrue’s Desert Kabob House. This food location suffers from being in same area at Fire Eater’s Grill and Mythos. As a result, the food looks inferior compared to the far better options nearby.

On the positive side, this quick service location added a new vegan menu item. Universal Orlando has increased the number of vegan items served across property in recent months. Formerly, vegan diners could get a scaled back kebab with vegetables. Most diners ordering that complained of poorly prepared vegetables decreasing overall experience. Good news, this new vegan kebab shows better preparation than previous vegan option here.

The new Vegan Meatball Kebab Combo costs $14.99. The menu description tells us that the plant-based meatballs are brushed with chermoula marinade. The same pita bread used on the other kebabs provides container for vegan meatball goodness. The other pieces of this combo involve the ajvar sauce, caramelized onions, and crumbled feta. I assume the feta served meets vegan standards based on the name of kebob. The combo rounds out with some chips as a side.

On the positive side, the vegan meatballs tasted pretty good. The flavor of the sauce and other ingredients work well with this kebab. Even the caramelized onions displayed a solid flavor. Most importantly, I love seeing another more unique vegan item at Universal Orlando.

On the less positive side, for a vegan entrée, it lacked vegetables except for some onions. The meatballs taste a bit dry. Some guests voiced that the overall texture of the kebab took away from the dining experience. I think some of that relates to the large bread to filling ratio. Though the flavor of the ajvar sauce with its red pepper base enhances the meatballs, diners will find some legitimate spice with this kebab. Now, this spice will not match a true spicy kebab. Yet, for theme park level spice, this packs some kick. If you dislike spicy food, avoid this kebab.

I would really like to endorse this new kebab as a standout. However, I lack confidence this vegan item will appeal to many people. I respect that dining truly vegan comes with extra effort. I applaud Universal Orlando for designing and providing this new vegan item. Still, I do not expect this vegan item to sell well in the long-term. We know Universal Orlando gives up on new vegan items quickly. Yet, we will need to wait and see.

As always, eat like you mean it!


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