Oklava

So I ended up returning to the City on this fine day.  Weekend that is.  You may wonder WHY I would return to a place with frenetic stress-inducing activities on the weekend.

Food of course.

So, a 10 minute walk from Liverpool Street we found this unlikely little restaurant.  I say found like we were looking in vain for it.  That wouldn’t be entirely correct…  Google maps to the rescue.

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Like the weekday equivalent of the nearby commercial hub of London with multitudes of bankers, the restaurant was smartly dressed, opening and friendly.  No sarcasm there of course.

All the staff were women.  No chauvinist male pigs here.

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While poring over the menu, we had a little bread on the side.  With an interesting Medjool date butter spread.  Something unusual and “interesting” although I love butter as much as the next man, a little change was welcome once in a while.

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Courgette, pea and mint fritters.  At first I thought I was in luck.  Deep fried vegetables!  However, they strangely enough seemed a little watery inside.  So much for my belief that deep frying anything makes it taste better.  Like deep fried Mars bars….

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Lahmacun.  Minced lamb pide.  This was not bad.  The base was fluffy and the minced lamb topping was minced very fine so I almost mistook this for some meaty tomato paste.

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Pickled salad on the side.  Not really my thing as you may have guessed.  Probably for a vegetable lover, this would be ok.

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Iman biyaldi and whipped feta on toast.   This dish kind of fell down as it just seemed like a block of feta cheese.  Although it was crunchy, there just didn’t seem to be enough to keep my attention.  A little too bland for my tastes.

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Pomegranate glazed lamb breast with yogurt.  This was the stand out dish of the meal.  The flaky, fatty lamb with a crunchy flavorful crust combined with the yogurt to give an umami taste.  If you work in the city, it’s probably worth popping over for this to cheer yourself up on a bad day.  Like when your bank gets fined for LIBOR/FX fixing/other dodgy stuff.

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Fried Cyprus potatoes, chilli salt, garlic and herb mayo.  What’s not to like about fried potatoes?  Definitely no problem here.

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Pistachio sponge, caramelized white chocolate, barbecue quince and crispy filo.  An interesting idea although probably a more average taste unfortunately.

 

I must commend the service at this restaurant.  Friendly and funny.  When we asked about what dishes they would recommend, I said I would blame them if things went wrong.  To which the reply was, they would eat it then!  I guess a sense of humour is essential in this testosterone filled locale.  Although there were some stand out dishes, some of the combinations didn’t gel that well with me.  Worth a try if only to trade banter with the staff.

 

A quiet eating 6.5/10.

Lunch (2 courses) was GBP18 excluding service and drinks.

 

Oklava

74 Luke St.

London EC2A 4PY

 

Oklava Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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