Where Turkish cuisine is more than just kebabs
Garlic is a refined Turkish restaurant that has been serving Turkish food infused with Mediterranean flavors for years. It's one of the few long-standing restaurants on leafy Yongjia Road that has stood the test of time amidst the fast-changing food and beverage scene.
Over the years, the interior has gotten a bit worn, but the evening vibe is pleasant thanks to the soft lighting. The spacious dining room with different seating arrangements makes it a good choice for friendly get-togethers and intimate date nights.
Compared to other Turkish restaurants in town that focus on kebabs, Garlic's menu features a wider selection – from freshly baked breads, healthy salads and Turkish meze (appetizers) to a vast array of meat dishes.
When it comes to meze, there are few cuisines in the world that can rival Turkish. It's a tradition to have rounds of hot and cold starters before the main dishes are served, and meze are prefect for social gatherings designed to promote talking through casual, shared eating.
Here, you can find typical meze like hummus, char-grilled eggplant with filtered yogurt, homemade strained yogurt with herbs and garlic, stuffed vine leaves, white cheese salad and imported green and black Turkish olives. Meze are always eaten together with drinks, such as wine and Raki – an anise-flavored liquor known as "lions's milk." It's common to dilute Raki by adding water to it, which turns it milky white. Turkish people love Raki – the national drink – and I recommend trying the famous Yeni brand at Garlic to enhance the authentic experience.
As the weather gets colder, Turkish meat dishes are a good way to warm your bones. Fried lamb liver with potatoes and onions is an indispensable Turkish dish. Seasoned with sumac and black pepper, it is believed the dish was invented during the time the Ottomans ruled Albania. The lamb liver cubes have a fairly strong lamb taste that would appeal to lamb lovers.
There is also a wide selection of charcoal grilled meat dishes, cooked to perfection with distinctive flavors.
Opening hours: 6pm-11:30pm (weekdays); 12am-11:30pm (weekends)
Address: 698 Yongjia Rd
Average price: 240 yuan