VALUE FOR MONEY: 6.8/10
VENUE & ATMOSPHERE: 7.7/10
NOTE: ALL MEAT IS HALAL. ALCOHOL IS SERVED ON SITE.
Today was a celebration. On the Friday I had accepted my new job, and consequently, decided to treat ShakerFries and his parents to the much raved about, Gokyuzu.
As a family, we have eaten a lot of Turkish cuisine. Most of the time we have left feeling unsatisfied due to the poor service, or poor quality of the meat. For this reason, we had high expectations from Gokyuzu. We booked a table, as it was a nice day and I heard it can get ridiculously busy even on a normal day. We had the choice of sitting outside, or inside (where it was a bit cooler) but under a bright and airy section of the restaurant. We chose the latter! The restaurant, as suspected, was heaving.
For drinks I ordered the ‘I AM JUICE’ in raspberry and rose flavor (my two favorite. flavors!). I must say I really enjoyed this drink as the flavors complemented each other well and it was really refreshing in the heat!
The waiter was friendly and brought us some complimentary bread, dips, and salad to start. We then ordered a sharing hot mezze platter to start, which included: hommus, halloumi, suck, calamari, borek and falafel. This was ideal as it included all of our favorite starters, so we were very pleased with this platter. At around £16.50 it was a bit on the pricey side, but everything tasted good (including the calamari which to my surprise was extremely fresh!) There were 2 pieces of everything, and we shared this between 4. We also ordered the fried aubergines, with onions and tomato sauce. This was a really generous portion, bursting with flavor.
These starters along with the bread and dips were very filling, so for mains we opted to order 2 and share: the small lamb doner (£10.50) which included succulent pieces of lamb, layered on one huge skewer and then slow cooked for maximum flavor, and the mixed lamb and chicken shish (£10.50), which included lean chunks of chicken breast and lamb, skewered and grilled over charcoal. These dishes were served with rice and Bulgar (bulgar upon request).
I enjoyed BOTH our main dishes which is a rarity. You could tell a very high quality meat was used for the lamb doner. It was tender and meaty marbled with a little fat (but not too much). The juicy flavors really came through from where it had been slow cooked. likewise, with the chicken and lamb shish, both meats were succulent and tender with a punch of smokiness, which I really enjoyed! We cleaned our plates between us. The amount of food we ordered was just right and there was no food wastage which I am proud about.
Overall, I have to say that this is probably one of my best Turkish restaurant experiences. The atmosphere is lively, and you can tell Gozyuzu attracts a diverse range of clientele, not just muslims. I was blown away by their service and general attentiveness, and in all honestly am disappointed that I didn’t stay for dessert to try their kunefe, which happens to be my most favorite dessert! The food was filling but didn’t leave you with that crappy slobbish feeling after. Our bill came to around £65.00, which I think was more than reasonable between 4, bearing in mind we shared our mains and starters. I think on a normal day, where everyone was to have their own mains, it would have been more pricey. In my opinion this extra cost would have been worth it as I was really happy with my overall experience and will DEFINITELY be returning at some point. The only negative is, that if you don’t like to dine where alcohol is available then this probably isn’t the place for you. The service was great all around, but they were a little slow in taking our order (not enough for the average Joe to notice though – I am being extra pedantic).