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Tike Grill and Bar – A taste of Istanbul
Tike (pronounced ‘tikay’) is an authentic
restaurant in the City of London. It’s part of a small but classy chain
began in 1998 in Istanbul. Since opening their first restaurant the
cousins from Adana who together make up Tasty Med have expanded their
reach beyond Turkey into Greece, Ukraine and now England. Tike serves
traditional "charcoal grilled" barbequed lamb, chicken, kebabs,
authentic dishes, fresh salads and pide from the wood-burning oven.
Fenchurch Place is an open square
just in front of
Fenchurch Street main-line station. It’s a stone’s throw from Tower
Monument underground stations. Its location has made it a favourite
city workers who can enjoy a quick lunch, a lingering mid-day meal, an
evening dinner or a convivial gathering before the homeward commute.
Tike has become the meeting place of
choice for the
discerning expat Turkish population. They enjoy a taste of home at
reasonable prices. There can surely be no higher recommendation than
of those who should know more about Turkish cooking than I ever will.
Located in a stunning Richard
building, Tike spans two floors and makes the most of the large windows
front over both levels. The modern decor reflects the style of the
the ground floor has an informal atmosphere, set around the bustle of
popular bar and the open-plan bread oven which offers the prospect of
food to come.
Inspired by the skills of the Turkish
baker, we ordered
Lachmajun. It’s a thin bread topped with minced lamb,
herbs and spices. Pide are
small pies stuffed with kisir cheese and vegetables, and still warm
oven. A glass of fine Turkish red made a delightful start to the meal.
light yogurt dip with cucumber - and warm bread kept us company.
Our tray of small dishes were soon to
they were an attractive selection which offered an array of flavours,
light salads and creamy dips scooped up with more fresh warm bread.
Tavugu - creamed chicken breast dip with walnuts - was a particular
and a little different from the mezze of the more mundane Turkish
in London. We continued with:
Patlican Salad - charcoal grilled
with lemon juice and a hint of garlic.
Gavurdayi - finely chopped tomato,
onion salad with a pomegranate juice dressing - was particularly
Hayirli - finely chopped
parsley, onion and fresh herb salad - was fresh and well seasoned.
Ichli Kiofte are handmade steamed
balls of cracked
wheat stuffed with minced meat. These were surprisingly light and
to Lebanese kibbe but without the deep frying. A must-try.
Pastirmali Houmus - hot chickpea
puree topped with
sliced cured meat which gave extra texture and flavour to a familiar
Miutebel - warm oven-roasted
aubergine dip sprinkled
with crushed pistachio nuts. Creamy comfort.
My guest was tempted by Iskender for
dish - lamb ‘Tike donner’ served on a bed of grilled bread topped with
grilled tomatoes. This is a considerable plateful and probably enough
with a selection starters. If you are a lover of kebabs then your head
turned by this one. If there is a group of you then you might consider
striking ‘Meterlik’ House Special ‘1 metre long Adana kofte kebab’! A
My main course was Tavuk Kiulbasti -
marinated chicken breast fillets - which were tender, juicy and
This would made an ideal light lunch if you don’t have time to graze on
Kiunefe - warm kadaifi with a soft
cheese filing and crushed pistachio topping - was one of the
desserts on offer from Tike. The threads of pastry were delicate and
this with some dark Turkish coffee or a glass of tea.
Irmik Helvasi is a traditional baked
with fresh semolina and pine nuts, scented with cinnamon and with an
centre. This was marvellously aromatic with a cold filling of real
cream which our waiter told us was flavoured with mastic resin. A
change from strawberry or chocolate.
Tike is a restaurant which has
loyal followers. Its transport connections give it a catchment area
from the City to the far reaches of Essex. I have no hesitation in
Tike for its quality of food, its knowledgeable staff and its unique
impossible to visit just once.
Mon to Fri 11am-12midnight, last
The restaurant is closed at weekends
but can be
reserved for special events
Tike Grill and Bar – A taste of
5 Fenchurch Place, London EC3M 4AJ
Phone 020 7702 9965
[Tike Restaurant is now closed]