Jason Donervan: the man behind the pun

Your favourite kebab man told us how much he missed you this summer


Jason Donervan a.k.a. Mustapha (not that he minds being called Jason) is entering his fifteenth year as Triangle mainstay and local legend.

In that time, he’s snagged a place on the WKD 2010 Golden Kebab Award shortlist, gained a 4.5 star rating on Yelp, and won the hearts and minds of millions.

Despite his wide-spread fame, nobody ever seems to have asked the Turkish king of chicken burger mayo ketchup what he does with his life beyond the four walls of his van.

This man is your hero

This man is your hero

To find out, The Tab popped down last Wednesday around 8pm to speak to Jason while sober for a change.

When we get there, Jason is busy preparing the meat for the later rush of drunk freshers, but still greets me with his trademark grin as I approach the window.

As usual, he’s dressed up in the official Donervan uniform of red polo shirt (with name embroidered) and small white paper hat.

Leaving the kebab van behind for a moment, we take a seat on a nearby bench and it’s not long before we’re chatting like old friends, which is hardly surprising given how much Jason likes Bristol students.

“Bristol university students are good, and very polite. I love them.”

Yeah cheesy chips please mate

Yeah cheesy chips please mate

But, what does Jason get up to when he isn’t in his trailer selling kebabs to students? Turns out his daily routine isn’t too different from most of us.

“I just sleep really. From 6am-1pm I sleep because I don’t finish work until 4 or 5 in the morning.”

While the students are away over summer, Jason’s customer numbers understandable nosedive, so we’re not surprised to learn that Jason uses the summer to split his time between serving the locals and holidaying in Europe – he spent a week in both Turkey and Spain this year.

These guys deserve a Michelin star

These guys deserve a Michelin star

When he isn’t sunning himself, Jason likes “shopping down that bit where the fountains are” and watching the football. However, it’s unlikely he’s enjoyed the football too much recently: he’s a Manchester United fan.

Moving onto nightclub tips, Jason says London, Bath, and (obviously) Bristol are his top cities for clubbing, though his choice of nightclub might differ considerably from what most students would call a good night out.

“If I was going out clubbing in Bristol instead of working, I’d go to Mbargos and Yia Mass on Park Street”

Not the big night out you’d expect from someone with their own Twitter fan page but we’re not here to judge. Given Jason says he only drinks beer we consider telling him about the £1 bottles of Fosters in Lounge, but it seems he won’t be swayed.

Kebab. Chicken. Burger. Chips. Legend.

Kebab. Chicken. Burger. Chips. Legend.

As for what’s next for Jason Donervan?  “I have no plans as of yet really.”

“However, I want to keep getting my awards. I have five stars hygiene every year, you know” and with that proud boast he returns to his hatch and starts to prep some pitta.