Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Cafe Turko

October 7, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

cafe-turkoMediterranean restaurants too often limit themselves to a few staple entrees and mezzes. I was glad to discover that the Turkish restaurant Café Turko makes no such mistake.

The café, nestled in the heart of Seattle’s art-loving Fremont neighborhood, about two blocks from the bright blue Fremont Bridge and the massive Fremont Troll sculpture, has a menu that is lengthy and diverse in the best possible way. And the food is delicious.

A great Mediterranean meal begins with mezzes. Here, the rainbow hummus plate provides heaping portions of four varieties of the delicious dip. Other appetizers worth trying include a delectable eggplant paste (called Antep Patlıcan Ezme), herb-stuffed grape leaves (known as dolmas) and a tahini-cauliflower dish colorfully called Snowballs in Desert.

Beef and lamb dishes form the backbone of the entrée section of the menu. I ordered and loved the Gypsy’s Yahni with lamb, a well-seasoned vegetable dish with salad and rice that the menu describes as “untranslatably delicious.” Other signature options include a veggie-topped eggplant and yogurt dish called Ali Nazik the Fire, Cappadocia Chicken Köftes and an assortment of kebabs. Most striking of all, though, are the Turkish pizzas, or pides, which come with uniquely Turkish toppings molded into gondola-like shapes. I also ordered a plate of the spinach hummus, which comes with a generous amount of warm pita bread. The pita is delectable not just as a vehicle for hummus but to soak up whatever flavors might run off an entrée.

Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free diners have more than a few options from which to choose. Every menu item is labeled to indicate if it’s suitable for those with dietary restrictions.

The extensive café menu also offers Turkish breakfast dishes, pita sandwiches well-suited for lunch on-the-go, and specialty drinks. A lengthy roster of flaky pastries, many featuring fruit and nut fillings, form the dessert menu.

Café Turko is located within easy walking distance of multiple marinas offering overnight moorage, including the Lake Union Waterworks (206-304-1477), Affinity Marina (206-304-1477), and Tillicum Marina (206-633-5454). Morrison’s North Star Marine Fuel Dock, half a mile away across the Fremont Bridge, has space for transient docking.

Review by Jeff Rindskopf

Café Turko
754 North 34th Street
Seattle, Washington


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