Must try: Everything!! Acili Ezme, Babaganush , Adana Kebab, Kalamar
(This meal was complimentary which did not affect my review.)
Ever since I visited Turkey a few years ago, I have been on the hunt for authentic Turkish food.
I think I’ve finally found that perfect destination, where the food is really reminiscent of the fabulous eats I had in my travels.
I was recently invited to review Roka in Kew Gardens, which is co-owned by the charming Annette Dulger. Chef Erol Firat mans the kitchen where the emphasis is on regional cuisine from the Western part of Turkey.
The restaurant is bright and cheery decorated with mosaic murals and functional furniture. The warmth and hospitality of Turkey pervades every corner of this space.
But please let me talk about the food…
It was fabulous…every bite I took – put me in heaven!
What distinguishes the food at Roka is the painstaking effort made to procure the freshest, finest ingredients.
The meats, vegetables, cheeses etc. – everything comes from natural farms or the very best ethnic grocery stores. Annette spends her only day off driving 2 hours to local farms to bring the freshest vegetables she can find.
All of this effort pays off on the plate. Everything we tasted was outstanding from the cold mezze to the hot kebabs and of course the dessert.
I loved their Acili Ezme which is their version of a Muhamarra. Their cold mezze was delicious – everything from the Hummus to the Babaganush to the Haydari (labne) and much more.
I thought their fried calamari was superb – fresh, light and crispy. The kebabs were really tasty too – my favorites were the Adana kebabs.
It hasn’t even been 6 hours since I came back form Roka and I’m already planning my return…. I recommend you do too!
Here is some of what we ate:
Turkish Bread and Olive Oil
Mixed Appetizer Platter
Zeytin Yogil Yaprak Dolma
Domates Soslu Patlican