February 2020 - The Cut: Anatolia
I am a fan of Mediterranean food. As an avid lover of Sahara, any new franchise had to compete against this beloved spot. My son informed me of a new restaurant in the University area called Anatolia. Not fully open, they allowed him to try some of their baklavas. They discussed dishes on the menu and the hope that their place will do well. My son informed me that he talked to the owners about the magazine and after much begging, we went to their grand opening the next day.
The restaurant was painted in a sea of blue. They could have fit a few more tables but chose to consider walking space for patrons and staff. I met the owners who greeted us and found a seat to sample the menu. We started with their baklava. A bit on the syrupy side, it had an overall traditional taste. Every bite was an experience. They had different flavors, including peanut butter chocolate and chocolate banana. I tried them with some Turkish coffee. Needless to say, I was awake since last Tuesday.
Soon it was time to try some of the entrees. I had the Chef’s special: kabobs of chicken, lamb, and spicy beef on a bed of rice, with their house salad and hummus. The chicken and lamb were full of flavor, combining well with the side items. The spicy beef, however, left me with mixed reviews. It was dry and didn’t seem to mix well with the other delectables on the plate. It was the last thing I ate, not wanting to waste food. We also tried their chicken dish, which was delightful. But, the star of the menu, while one of the most expensive dishes is their lamb chops. Perfectly cooked with flavor seeped into the bone. It was good to the last bite and worth its price.
When it comes down to the final judgment, with a few tweaks to the menu, Anatolia stands to be a real contender.