LONDON | Sometimes the best surprises come from where you do not expect, and we love being surprised by food spots. The City Lane was recently invited to try out Tarshish, a six month old Turkish restaurant in Wood Green, far away from the trendy spots in Central London.
From outside, Tarshish is housed in a dark building that occupies two floors on Turnpike Lane High Road. Step inside, and things light up with a beautiful fit out. The top floor, where we were seated, has a clean, minimalist, glamorous design, with just a few objects adorning the walls. Large windows and luxurious plants dot the perimeter. It all comes together nicely to create a welcoming atmosphere.
We had a chat with Fabio Teixeira, one of the owners of the restaurant, who explained us his personal feelings about Turkish Cuisine and his idea to create a place where East meets West in a fusion of the modern and traditional. The food is based on an unique mix of Turkish tradition, and modern flavours, mainly continental and British. An example is the choice to combine grilled lamb, mac & cheese, coleslaw and pomegranate reduction. We were surprised and suspicious when we saw this combination on the menu but the result actually works really well.
We started our lunch with a small plate of mixed cold meze, containing six traditional Turkish and eastern Mediterranean delights: Babaganoush, Imam Bayildi, Tabbouleh, Hummus, Cacik, and Ezme salad, served with warm bread. We decided to partner the cold meze with something warmer, and went for a dish of perfect fried floured calamari rings served with tartare sauce and pan fried prawns in garlic butter, chopped with spring onions. Everything was characterised by simple intense flavours, which whet our appetite.
What came after was incredible. After a tough decision, we went for two generous meat dishes, both cooked over hot charcoal. The first was a serving of medium rare marinated grilled lamb chops served with mashed potatoes, asparagus garnished with salad, topped with pomegranate sauce. The chops were cooked perfectly, incredibly tender and flavoursome.
We went also for a medium rare wagyu sirloin steak, served with mashed potato, asparagus topped with blue cheese and brandy gravy. The wagyu was exactly the way it should be – beautifully marbled, juicy, moist, intense, succulent. The brandy and blue cheese sauce was something we weren’t too sure about, but it was the perfect touch to accompany the steak, with the brandy cutting through the richness of the blue cheese. A wide range of wines, with a mostly Mediterranean focus, are available, and the waitstaff were well versed in what matches with the food.
We were very impressed by our meal at Tarshish, and like that they’re willing to try new things, mixing traditional and modern influences to good effect. The classic dishes we tried hit the mark, as did the more modern dishes. Combined with quality ingredients and service, it is absolutely worth taking a trip to Turnpike Lane to try Tarshish.
16-22 High Road
London N22 6BX
Telephone: 020 8881 6479
Mon – Fri: 5:00pm to 12:30am
Sat – Sun: 12:00pm to 12:30am