Turkish restaurants have had a home in London for decades but they’re not always the easiest places to keep track of when you want a really great meal. We’ve rounded up our favourite family places across north London – get the borek ready.
Generous portions, a decent price and a taste of home – Petek offers a traditional Turkish experience in Finsbury Park. Non-greasy borek, soft and light warm bread and kofte that aren’t too dry; while none of the dishes are new, Petek gets the level of spice, grease and flavour spot on. Petek’s always busy and with good reason – it’s a great neighbourhood spot.
Anatolian cuisine gets a fine dining twist at Sofra restaurants. There are a couple in London, one in Mayfair and one on Oxford Street. Here traditional dishes are given a modern makeover and made a little more healthy. The wine menu features Turkish wine and it’s perfect for a refined evening out.
One of Islington’s favourite spots is this traditional Turkish restaurant, Iznik. Veggies are well catered for here with non-meat versions of classics like mousakka, while and classics like borek and falafel get an almost delicate touch: rather than huge plates of mixed grill and hearty dips, Iznik is a little more dainty. Definitely save room for the baklava.
Zara is a family owned Anatolian restaurant in Hampstead that bring colour and chic presentation to Turkish classics. Fish lovers and veggies get a decent look in while less well known dishes like Et sote (diced lamb with tomatoes and onions) are showcased. Put the borek down and try something new.
Testi offers classic Turkish in Stoke Newington. It is family owned and operated and has a proper neighbourhood feel – pop in more than a couple of times and you’ll be part of the family. The kebabs and grills are especially good here – try the Chicken beyti and don’t midd the lamb chops.
One of the standout Turkish restaurants on Green Lanes (of which there are endless variations), Gokyuzu has been around for 20 years and it’s easy to see why. It’s always busy here so an evening is guaranteed to be lively and the family really care about the dishes they’re serving up. The décor is a step up from the strip lighting and plastic seating in some other places and the ingredients are super fresh. Don’t miss their lahmacun: it’s some of north London’s best. You’ll be hard pushed to eat it all however, portions are large – Turks like to feed their friends.
Antepliler started out as a Turkish bakery on Green Lanes in Haringey but thankfully it’s now a full on restaurant, and their bakery skills make the pide oh so tasty. They use a clay oven to save up fantastically crisp lahmacun and there’s plenty of sharing dishes for vegetarians such as baby aubergines stuffed with onion, tomatoes, spices and herbs. If you’re after something more than a quick meal Antepliler is a great place for an evening out.