The Independent London Newspaper



EATING OUT: Café adds a touch of Turkish delight

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The Village Cafe brings the best of London Turkish food to NW5

Published: 30 January, 2017

LONDON’S Turkish food scene has grown in recent years, with parts of the capital’s north-east becoming celebrated for small, family-run eateries that pull in diners from far afield. 

This Anatolian food revolution shows no sign of abating and Green Lanes has become a mecca for those who love the style of food that comes in dishes that litter the table and encourage lengthy meals.

Now York Rise, Kentish Town, has a new diner serving up traditional Turkish food.

The Village Cafe has been a place to meet for a cup of coffee or a sandwich during the day for a long time in Dartmouth Park, but late last year the proprietors began firing up the grill and are now serving into the evening.

Proprietor Riza Yigit began raking over the charcoals before Christmas and word has begun to spread that the place is serving up delicately prepared traditional Turkish fare.

While the kebab is the centrepiece of any meal, it is no longer considered a dish you buy over a counter, though such stalwarts as Archway Kebabs are still celebrated for their enduring quality. 

As The Village shows, alongside a range of grilled of chicken, lamb and fish you can pick at a Turkish meze, plenty of salads and then less well-known dishes.

Away from the expected staples, offerings such as Turkish sausage Sucuk Izgara – garlicky and strong – is a must-try. They also do such morsels as Albanian liver – Arnavut Cigeri – which comes tossed in flour and herbs and is lightly fried. 

Fish ranges from sardines to bream, bass, salmon and prawns, while for non meat eaters, the Sebzeli Guvec – a vegetable stew – is the perfect comfort food, gently flavoured with bay leaves and hints of other herbs such as marjoram. 

Add to this their falafels, which have the perfect outer crunch and a well-seasoned inside, while thick slabs of hellim cheese with a splash of lemon juice will tempt you even when the mains are completed.

The Village Cafe brings the best of London Turkish food into NW5, served in nice surroundings by people who care about what they are dishing up and clearly have a passion for it. 

York Rise, with its well established Truffles Deli, Indian restaurant Monsoon, and the soon-to-open Dartmouth Arms, has room for a Turkish restaurant and one can only hope it brings in more footfall to this special corner of the neighbourhood. 

The Village Cafe
20 York Rise, NW5 1ST
020 7267 4343


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