Monday, 2 December 2013

[Final] Al Kouther vs Meal Deal Chilli is King

So 8 months and 51 falafel wraps later, we've reached the climax. It's Al Kouther vs Meal Deal Chilli is King to decide which is the best falafel wrap on Leather Lane. Going into the final Meal Deal Chilli is King are the bookie's favourites with falafelodds of 1/3 and it'd take a brave man to bet against them.

As this is the final we'll go through the scoring category by category and will tally up the score as we go.


Taste (17)
MDCIK (17) - With a total of 17 points up for grabs for the category, MDCIK takes full marks. The wrap tastes like nothing else on Leather Lane. The medley of complementary and complex flavours work so perfectly it would be unfair to award any less. The falafels are well seasoned without being too salty and features tangy gherkins and the pleasant grassy, herby taste of parsley.
AK (15) - Al Kouther's wrap tastes great too but the depth of flavour that MDCIK offers isn't there. As always their parsley heavy tabbouleh was fantastic, chilli sauce provided heat without being overly acidic and at the coriander in the falafels was notable.

Al Kouther

Appearance (5)
MDCIK (5) - The ridged back of the wrap is one of the finest sights on Leather Lane. The cross section of the wrap reveals radiant red cabbage with none of the other ingredients looking lacklustre. 
AK (5) - Al Kouther's bread doesn't look as visually appealing as MDCIK's but the cross section shows that a vibrant array of colours from the lettuce, tomato, red cabbage, tabbouleh and chilli sauce. Top marks all round.

Freshness (5)
MDCIK (5) - We couldn't find fault in the freshness of the ingredients. The parsley provided an earthy freshness to the wrap and the red cabbage provided crunch.
AK (4) - The ingredients on the whole didn't seem quite as fresh. This wasn't perhaps helped by the bread not being as crisp.

Meal Deal Chilli is King
Nutrition (6)
MDCIK (3) - MDCIK's wrap, although delicious and dense, doesn't contain a particularly varied salad.  
AK (6) - The wrap was packed full of varied salad of aforementioned ingredients: tomato, lettuce, cabbage, tabbouleh, gherkin so comfortably scores top marks.

MDCIK (left) vs Al Kouther (right)
Quantity (16)
MDCIK (13) - Their wrap is very thin but tightly packed so certainly isn't small. If we were to use one of Leather Lane's wraps as a weapon this would be top of the list without a doubt but despite it's density it is a few marks off 100% for this category.
AK (16) - The wrap is absolutely massive. The biggest of the competition. Lots of salad are packed in their amongst the falafels so top marks has to be awarded.
Al Kouther - Poor Structural Integrity
MCDIK spillage
Structural Integrity (3)
MDCIK (2) - Largely solid but a bit of the sauce did dribble onto falafelofficer 2's crotch. This could be perhaps down to user error but even still we can't award top marks for this.
AK (1) - Big split in the wrap unfortunately. Luckily a plate was to hand but if this had taken place on Grays Inn Field we would have had a real mess on our hands. Literally.

Mouthfeel (3)
MDCIK (3) - Varied textures everywhere. Chewy but well toasted bread containing crunchy ingredients inside. Faultless.
AK (2) - The ingredients were great - crunchy salad and falafel but unfortunately the bread wasn't toasted for long enough so a mark was lost there.

At the end of the Product part of the scoring it's currently MDCIK (48) vs Al Kouther (49)


Cost (18)
MDCIK (9) - £3. Going rate.
AK (9) - £3. Going rate.

Score MDCIK (57) vs Al Kouther (58)

Speed (13)
MDCIK (12) - MDCIK were busy, as they always tend to be during peak hours. They're a slick, well oiled machine though so we were in and out very quickly.
AK (13) - No queue in Al Kouther so we were served as soon as we entered. As we've mentioned, the wrap wasn't toasted for very long which lost marks in other categories but has helped Al Kouther score full marks for speed.

Score MDCIK (69) vs Al Kouther (71)

Staff (10)
MDCIK (9) - The staff are very professional in MDCIK. We were called 'Sir' when presented with our wrap. Whereas earlier on in the competition this place was a bit of a shambles they're now a very efficient and polite falafel distributing machine.
AK (7) - They seemed a bit uninterested but that's not losing too many marks from us. As long as due care and attention was placed in the product that's what we're mainly interested in. They were efficient enough to score well in this category.

Score MDCIK (78) vs Al Kouther (78)

Name of Shop (3)
MDCIK (3) - Such a barmy name for a shop it quite rightly has consistently scored top marks throughout the competition.
AK (2) - We like the name of this outlet but it's not silly enough to get full marks.

Score MDCIK (81) vs Al Kouther (80)

Winner: Meal Deal Chilli is King

AND THERE WE HAVE IT. Meal Deal Chilli is King are crowned as champions of Falafeloff 2013! Congratulations to both finalists for providing such a mouth watering finale to the tournament but MDCIK have sneaked it by one mark in the final round. Credit to them for bucking their ideas up from their poor effort earlier on in the heats to providing the most delicious wrap on Leather Lane with the most slick service around. Commiserations to Al Kouther who almost upset the odds in this match - margins are so tight and we feel that if the wrap hadn't split so catastrophically it could have been their name etched on the trophy. 

Thanks falafelfans for reading, commenting, sharing and tweeting (@falafeloff) throughout the competition. Please let us know what you think of the outcome.

Meal Deal Chilli is King can be found at 41 Leather Lane.
Al Kouther can be found at 22 Leather Lane.

 Previous Scores

Meal Deal Chilli is King

Al Kouther
Heats - 74.5
Last 16 - 76
Quarter Final - 82
Semi Final - 76



  1. Great work guys, been following your progress all; summer.

    Now - how about a MDCIK Vs Chick playoff?

  2. Well that was exciting!!! I'd also be very interested to see how chick fare as I do prefer the fresher deep-fried falafel!

  3. Just had me an AK today... I think it's got to be some MDICK next time. :)

  4. An exciting and educating tournament comes to a fitting end. Great that MDCIK are getting the recognition they deserve for their expert gourmet offerings. Also good that pretenders elsewhere on Leather Lane are publicly exposed for the overpriced amateurs that they are.