For the longest time, I’ve been craving food Turkish food (literally, since October). While I was home for winter break (so finally in January, four months later), I went to the best Turkish restaurant I know of – Bosphorous in Winter Park on Park Avenue. I knew going in I was going to get my favorite dish from there, but I wasn’t sure if I would try anything new while there, but to my pleasant surprise I did.
To begin, I ordered Turkish herbal tea, which the waitress said was similar to a black tea. I love drinking tea with my meal, so I was excited to try a new tea – especially since when I went to Turkey during the summer of 2013, I had some phenomenal teas. This tea didn’t have too much flavor and tasted like a typical black tea you would get in America, so I added some splenda to it. I don’t typically sweeten my tea, unless it’s plain black tea because I find it a bit boring. I ended up drinking three pots worth (I’m a tea fanatic), and luckily it was free refills on tea.
My mom and I decided to try a new appetizer, which was pan fried zucchini patties, also called Mucver. They were described as a combination of tender zucchini and fresh herbs and spices, served with special yogurt sauce on the side. I assumed they would be little slices if fried zucchini, but I was quite wrong. They came out as large patties – which looking back I guess I should have assumed since “patty” is in the title of the dish – so they were more than I was hoping for, but they were very tasty nonetheless. They had a vegetable flavor to them, but had more of a patty/cake taste to them because of the flour that was added to hold them together. They still tasted light despite the flour, although they weren’t the light slices of zucchini I expected. They were still good, especially with the yogurt sauce on top, which added a slight creamy flavor.
For my entree, I ordered my favorite dish from there – the special beyti kebap. It is chopped lamb that is flavored with garlic, hot Turkish peppers, and parsley. The lamb is then char-grilled on skewers wrapped in pita bread, then topped with our tomato and yogurt sauces. The dish also comes with rice pilaf, shredded carrot salad, red cabbage and red beet salad, a tomato and onion salad with olive oil, and a jalapeño pepper. The lamb is cooked perfectly, and the pita bread wrapped around it adds a nice touch of carbs and the delicious taste of pita, without it being too overwhelming. The tomato sauce on top is good, but I really love the yogurt sauce because it cools down the heat and makes it creamy tasting. The shredded carrots were lacking in flavor, although I loved the two other salads. I couldn’t decide if I liked the beet and cabbage salad more, or the tomatoes and onions salad. The jalapeño is spicy if you get the seeds – that’s actually what makes it spicy – so proceed with caution because there is a lot of heat packed in those peppers. My favorite way to eat this dish is to cut a piece of the lamb pita in half, put a little piece of jalapeño with it, add a bit of the beet and cabbage salad, then a bit of the tomato and onion salad with it. As my mom would say, I was building flavors. The two salads, along with the tomato and yogurt sauces helped to calm the peppers, but the flavors didn’t overshadow the lamb and pita. I absolutely love this dish, and I was happy that it was everything I wanted and more after craving it for four months.
My mom ordered the chicken adana kebap, which they actually hand out samples of as you walk past the restaurant. It is chopped chicken seasoned with garlic, light hot peppers, red bell peppers, and parsley, and then grilled. Her dish also rice pilaf, shredded carrot salad, red cabbage and red beet salad, a tomato and onion salad with olive oil (although this last salad was hardly on her plate). I’ve tried the chicken adana kebap before and it’s always great. It had a nice light spice to it, and all of the seasoning brought out a lot of flavor. She would pair it with the rice and the cabbage and beet salad, which she said had a nice flavor. She also didn’t care for the shredded carrots. I didn’t eat any of my rice but she said the rice had a lovely flavor to it, it was moist, and it had some spices in it because it is a pilaf.
We both loved our dishes and had a lovely lunch together. We always sit outside, although I’ve been inside the restaurant and it’s very nice inside. It has a warm and cozy atmosphere, and is decorated beautifully with Turkish decorations such as hookahs. The service is normally very good, although it was lacking a bit this time because our waitress was busy working inside and outside the restaurant, so it was understandable that she was swamped. She was still very helpful and kind, although we did wait a while for our food. Overall, my mom and I had a great lunch date together.
108 South Park Avenue, Winter Park, FL 32789