Turkish food is so much more than takeaway chicken kebabs at 3:00am from K Rd, and it’s always a treat to have a sit down dinner at a proper Turkish joint and experience the sheer variety of dishes and flavours on offer.
Jaan’s is a somewhat overlooked little place in Kingsland, housed in a pretty refurbished villa set back from the street. It’s reasonably priced, casual, and, located near Eden Park and the suburb’s best bars, an ideal spot for a pre-game (pun intended) meal. Try nab a table on the deck – the view of the city at night is lovely.
The Dolma (vine leaves stuffed with fragrant spiced rice and nuts) and Turkish Mixed Grill (lamb, chicken and shish kebab served with rice, salad and your choice of sauces) are perfect entrees for sharing, and I can never go past the mussaka or tagine for mains.
Mussaka is the Turkish version of Greek moussaka – it’s like lasagna, with baked layers of meat and vegetables and béchamel sauce and thinly sliced potato or eggplant replacing the pasta sheets. Jaan’s is hearty and beautifully spiced, with minced lamb and vegetarian options.
Tagine is a North African/Middle Eastern dish named after the distinctive clay pot in which it’s prepared – found in the kitchens of hip, slow-cooking mums everywhere. It’s basically a savoury stew with lamb, veggies and spices, eaten with rice and sometimes yoghurt. Jaan’s do a Tagine of the Day which is always pot-licking awesome.
The menu has $10 woodfired pizza specials if you’re in for lunch and plenty of options for vegetarians and vegans, including dirty good falafel. If you’re making a night of it, Jaan’s is BYO and the shisha is $20 – ask for the tutti frutti flavor for a deliciously sweet way to make one glass of wine feel like four.