It’s 11:30pm. You and your friends have just finished a night out at the bars, drinking Absinthe and local red wine, when all of a sudden it hits you…you’re hungry. This is a common side effect that occurs in about 1 out of 1 college students. In America, one might cure this problem with the proper dosage of fast food: Taco Bell, Burger King, Del Taco, McDonalds, Sonic. But you’re not in America anymore. You’re in Europe, where Taco Bell does not exist and Mexican food is harder to find than a four-leaf clover. That fact alone may keep college students away from Europe, but I am here to tell you to fear not! There is an equivalent to American fast food and that is kebabs, falafels, and crepes.
In order for you to understand just how amazing kebabs are and how prominent they are in European culture, just know that One Direction filmed their music video, Midnight Memories, in a kebab shop. In America, when one hears kebab, they normally assume shish kebab, cubes of grilled skewered meat. In Paris and in most of Europe, if you hear kebab, you assume the Turkish doner kebab. The doner kebab is made with meat cooked on a vertical rotisserie that can be served on a plate, in a pita or sandwich bread, or wrapped in a flatbread. The meat is normally lamb, beef or chicken. You can usually choose to add lettuce, tomato, onion, spices and a variety of sauces to your order. Most kebab shops are open late and one can order a kebab and fries for just about five euros. It is a filling, satisfying meal at an affordable price. If you happen to live off the metro stop, Montgallet, there’s an amazing Kebab shop with an orange awning that you have to try! The people there are friendly and are always giving you recommendations. One of the best parts about studying abroad is that some eateries will become more than just a good place to eat. You may associate some eateries with positive memories and may want to return simply for those memories. The orange awning kebab shop off metro station Montgallet is such a place for me.
If you don’t eat meat, one can normally find falafels, deep-fried balls made of chickpeas and/or fava beans, at the same place kebabs are sold. One can order just falafel balls, or have it served in a pita bread or some other type of bread wrap. With that said, there is no excuse for vegans or vegetarians to be wary of coming to Europe.
Another great fast food item you can get while in Paris, is crepes. My personal advice is to get crepes from street vendors, they tend to always taste best. The best part about crepes is that you can order savory crepes or sweet crepes for just about two to four euros. And if you’re like me, that means you can get one egg and ham savory crepe, and then finish off your meal with a strawberry and Nutella crepe.
So there you have it. Paris has great food you can get quickly and late at night. Honestly, my favorite part about getting drinks at night, is the food we get afterwards. And I’m sure all future Paris travelers will agree.