Alaturka in Park Slope
I have become a big fan of this place which opened up next to Chip Shop on 6th street and 5th Ave. Their chicken kabob sandwich has perfectly grilled, huge chicken chunks served in between two slices of their homemade wheat pita bread. Filled with shredded onions, lettuce, and carrots it's a helluva meal. The chicken kabob platter is big enough for two and it's only like $12. Their hummus is amazing too...very fresh with a zing of lemon.
I know this sounds like an ad for the place but I live around the corner and everytime I go there it seems so empty despite the food being so good and the owners are being so friendly. I really want to see them to succeed. Is the reason I haven't seen any other posts about this place on the boards because no one has been there or are people not as impressed as I am?
Pastoralia, the second paragraph of your post brings to mind the question that has been on my mind for some time: when have we reached the saturation point of having too many restaurants in Park Slope? And, does that mean a trend towards closure of some marginal establishments? Walking along Fifth Ave. (on our way to prix fixe at Tempo) last evening, I noted four Japanese joints in a two block stretch. I also noted a Peruvian chicken joint nearly empty and your beloved Turkish place, also nearly empty. Several walk-ins to Tempo were turned away because of a long-ish wait. Wish I could've directed them to another place on the strip, one where they could have an enjoyable meal and immediate seating.
On another front, Alaturka blanketed (ie, littered) our neighborhood with takeout/delivery menus. Their menu distributor didn't even bother sticking the menus in mail slots: they just dropped them on stoops and walkways. Shame.
my husband and i went here and couple of weeks ago, and i'm sad to say i was kind of disappointed.
it started off very promising; we began with a salad of parsley, tomatoes, onions, lemon juice and olive oil, which was fresh and tasty. their homemade bread is fantastic and i would have been thrilled with just the salad and the bread. we also had some stuffed grape leaves which were ok.
i had an adana kebab (ground lamb) for my main and it was so salty, it was practically inedible. my husband had the chicken kebab and it was pretty dry.
i really really wanted to like it, since the staff was so nice and accomodating, but
since there are a number of restaurants serving this type of food in the neighborhood (olive vine, mr. falafel) we probably won't be back. i'm glad the OP has such heart for it, and perhaps similar reviews from other 'hounds will inspire a return visit in us, but it's unlikely for now.
I liked Alaturka well enough...the bread is an important part of a good Turkish meal. I haven't tried any of the meats yet, though. I also wish they stayed open until at least midnight--their food would make for an excellent, and relatively healthful, break from bar-hopping.
There's a big difference, in my mind, between restaurants that bring something new to the table, and those that are just trying to out-location and out-decorate their all-too-similar competition. Mura, Jpan, Picasso--more to come--too much Planet Thailand-inspired Japanese food. But Turkish food, in my mind--especially if served with fresh baked bread--has little in common with Olive Vine or Mr. Falafel.
Alaturka in Park Slope is possibly some of the most overpriced dogfood I've ever had the pleasure of tasting. Looking at the menu, and considering myself somewhat of a Mediterranean food connoisseur, I couldn't help but wonder what a $7 falafel sandwich would taste like. After placing my order and waiting about 12 minutes (for a falafel?) I was very disappointed to see what was on my plate: 4 little burnt falafel balls, with mixed bag of salad (like the prepared kind you find in the supermarket) tossed on top. No fresh tomatoes or any other vegetables like you would find in any respectable middle eastern restaurant. The small amount of tehini on the side was hardly adequate to moisten the dry, stale piece of bread it was served on.
This was possibly one of the worst (and most expensive) falafel sandwiches I have ever eaten. I usually would not go online and write such a horrible review, but I think this place deserves it. I hope it goes out of business quickly and gets replaced with something more competent.