Nova Scotia

How much is disintegrating donair meat worth? $957.70 apparently

A Nova Scotia restaurateur has been ordered to pay a supplier nearly $1,000 after skipping out on a bill for donair meat because the spiced concoction wouldn't stick together while spinning on its roasting spit.

Restaurateur must still pay for donair meat that breaks apart while roasting, N.S. small claims court rules

Jack Khoury withheld payment to Nabil Toulany, arguing the moulded meat kept breaking apart and had to be roasted in a pan. (Andrew Vaughn/Canadian Press)

A Nova Scotia restaurateur has been ordered to pay a supplier nearly $1,000 after skipping out on a bill for donair meat because the spiced concoction wouldn't stick together while spinning on its roasting spit.

Jack Khoury lives in Shubenacadie and owns a restaurant in Saint John, N.B. He has bought donair meat from Billy Stick Food Ltd., a business based in Lake Echo, N.S., and owned by Nabil Toulany.

Toulany told a small claims court that he buys frozen boneless meat, shreds and minces it while still frozen, adds spices and then moulds it into cones. The cones are familiar sights in donair restaurants throughout the Maritimes, turning slowly on a vertical rod while they roast.

The court heard that in this case, the wholesale cost of each cone is $68 and that Khoury's restaurant can go through as many as 20 cones in a week. The court estimated that translates into hundreds of donairs every week.

Khoury complained that Toulany's cones would break apart while roasting and the meat would fall off, forcing workers to roast it in a pan instead of on the spit.

'Not ideal'

"This is not ideal, as it is the rotisserie-style roasting that is the signature feature of donairs," adjudicator Eric Slone noted in his decision.

"Also, it involves extra work for staff, who have to roast and slice the meat in a way that is not intended."

Toulany countered that other customers didn't complain about his cones. Slone said he accepted that Khoury had trouble with some of the cones, but not enough to justify not paying the bill.

"I believe that he was frustrated and simply chose not to pay this amount. There is no evidence that any of the food was thrown away, just that some of it didn't hold together properly."

In his decision, Slone split the difference, awarding Toulany $957.70 — half of what he was asking for.