Sunday, 15 June 2008

Euro 2008 - Turkey

Turkey have a do or die game against the Czech Republic tonight. Whoever wins the game will be through to the next round, and the loser will be out. The Czechs are probably the favourites to go through, but anything can happen in games like this.

Brisbane has quite a few Turkish restaurants to try out. I've eaten at Ahmet's at Southbank a few times, and it's usually a pretty dependable dinner choice. I always think the best way to start a Turkish dinner is with bread and dips. Ahmet's has a selection of dips, including baba ghanoush, homous, jajik (cucumber, yoghurt & garlic) and zeytun (olives, cream cheese and vinegar). When it comes to main courses, there are pide (baked Turkish bread with a choice of fillings - $18.90 to $20.90), guvec (lamb, chicken, prawn or vegetarian casseroles - $21.90 to $23.90) and various char grilled meats. The wine list is a bit limited, but you can buy Efes Turkish beer with your meals. And if you're at Ahmet's on a Friday or Saturday night, there's also the potential to share the floor with one of their belly dancers. I still have memories of being dragged into the middle of a Turkish restaurant in London by a belly dancer, so now I try to hide as soon as I see any belly dancers. Ahmet's at Southbank has just been closed for renovations, but was due to re-open on 29 May. There are also Ahmet's restaurants at Bulimba and Victoria Point.

Caravanserai has been operating in West End for years. I haven't eaten there for ages, but when I used to live in Yeronga it was a popular spot for a good BYO dinner. Again, meze or dips are a great way to get a taste for Turkish food. Caravanserai do meze platters which include humus, babagounosh, tarama salata, marinated olives, feta, artichokes, dolma and capsicum salad served with warm Turkish bread ($22.50 for 3-4 people). For mains, try the isimak (rare tender lamb fillet infused with cinnamon and sumac on fragrant couscous salad and chermoula dressing - $22.50), zhourg prawns (tiger prawns, mussels and market greens tossed in zhourg sauce with Israeli couscous on crispy flatbread - $21.50) or sebze (char grilled eggplant and zucchini, stacked with falafel and haloumi cheese $20.50). Caravanserai is BYO.

Other Turkish options in Brisbane are Efes One at Albion, Harem at Paddington and the Ottoman Cafe at Wend End. Turkish food is great to share with a bit of a crowd, so grab a few friends and head into your closest Turkish restaurant, for a night of moreish meze, grills and casseroles.

Ahmet's Southbank
Shop 10, Little Stanley Street
Southbank 4101
P - 07 3846 6699

Ahmet's Bulimba
136 Oxford Street
Bulimba 4171
P - 07 3395 8600

Ahmet's Victoria Point
Shop D6, Lakeside
7-13 Bunker Road
Victoria Point 4165
P - 07 3820 8840

Caravanserai Turkish Restaurant
1-3 Dornoch Terrace
West End 4101
P - 07 3217 2617
E -

Efes One
293 Sandgate Road
Albion 4010
P - 07 3862 4599
E -

Harem Turkish Restaurant
282 Given Tce
Paddington 4064
P - 07 3368 3141
W -

Ottoman Cafe
37 Mollison Street
South Brisbane 4101
P - 07 3846 3555
W -


Anonymous said...

Have you ever eaten at the newish Turkish restaurant on the Brunswick St Mall in the Valley?

I'm curious every time I walk past, but no-one can tell me if it's any good.


food bling, Brisbane said...

I know the one you mean, but I haven't tried it yet. I've walked past it about a hundred times though if that counts for anything