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Astoria kebab restaurant searches for newlyweds who recently visited to gift them free kebabs for a year

Feb. 14, 2023 By Sarah Belle Lin

Call it a match ground and grilled in a fit of fiery heat. Such is the burning passion that a kebab restaurant in Astoria, Queens, is displaying as it launches the search of a lifetime for the newlywed couple who recently visited their restaurant and danced a “first dance.”

Once reunited with their unrequited lovers, German Donor Kebab plans on gifting the couple what they hope will be the ultimate foodie present: free kebabs at GDK for a year. 

German Doner Kebab, which opened in Astoria on Feb. 6, serenaded the couple who enjoyed their first meal as married partners on Feb. 10 after their wedding ceremony. They danced together, donned in their full wedding gear and surrounded by the restaurant’s neon-orange glow and the comings-and-goings of kebab-craving patrons.

This was the couple’s third visit during the first five opening days, according to a GDK spokesperson. To continue the merry celebrations, the married couple brought two friends along with them. All four ordered Original German Doner Kebabs.

“It was so wonderful to be part of this couple’s special day,” said Ali Lodi, the restaurant manager who was present that day. “Our colleague Barkissa serenaded them as they danced on the restaurant floor, it was truly a memorable moment.”

While marriage rates across the U.S. continue to steadily decline, the growth rate of the German Doner Kebab’s kebab business is expected to rise. German Doner Kebab recently announced plans to open 12 new locations this year. The Queens location is the chain’s second U.S. location and three more locations are planned for New York City, including Midtown Manhattan and Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. 

Both of the New Jersey and New York restaurants are owned and operated by brothers Yunus and Thameem Shahul, who also operate a number of Cousins Maine Lobster restaurants across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions.

Despite an overall downwards trend, marriages in the U.S. rebounded slightly and increased by 18% from 2020 to 2021, according to Feb. 14 data from the CDC/NCHS National Vital Statistics System. That brings the marriage rate to six marriages per 1,000 people. In New York, the marriage rates from 2020 to 2021 increased from 4.5 to 5.2 per 1,000 people.

But bearing no mind to these trends, GDK only expressed remorse for losing the bride and groom who got away.

 “We are just sorry that we didn’t get their names as we would love to get back in touch to gift them with free kebabs for a year,” Lodi said. “Please help us find them!”

Do you know this couple? Or better yet, are you this couple? Get in touch with German Doner Kebab via Instagram at @GermanDonerKebabUSA. 

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