Restaurant Review: Globe Caf� Restaurant, N5
Rob Bleaney tries out homely Turkish cuisine with a modern twist in Blackstock Road
BLACKSTOCK Road is one of those odd areas that has never really seemed to have its own identity.
At its northern end lies Finsbury Park, with its myriad of Algerian cafes and shops giving rise to a bustling street culture straight out of north Africa.
To the south there is Highbury Barn, the quintessential city village with stylish delis serving up fromage and saucisson from every corner of the world.
Arsenal dominates to the west, with its towering new stadium and luxury flats development on the old Highbury ground.
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And to the east, on the Stoke Newington borders darling, yummy mummies recover their figures by marching in unison around Clissold Park with their buggies and babies in tow.
Surrounded by such rich variety, you might imagine Blackstock Road would be a bit of a place about town, but mention it to most people and they will turn their noses up and mumble something about scruffiness and a 600-strong police raid.
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Until recently that is, because change is in the air, and this run-down thoroughfare is coming to Highbury Barn’s party.
The off-licenses, hairdresser’s and greasy spoons are still there, but coffee shops, flower shops and even boutique dress shops are springing up alongside.
Many of the restaurants are also opening up their fronts to create a lively new street dining scene, and the newest addition is Globe Caf� Restaurant, a homely yet stylish new addition, serving up traditional Turkish cuisine with a modern twist.
It’s in good company, because just up the road is Yildiz - one of the best Turkish restaurants in the borough which is famed for its fantastic grilled meats - but the Globe is quite different.
With glass doors at the front, a glass roof and an open bar, it’s light, airy and welcoming, the sort of place you might stop for a coffee, a spot of breakfast or a focaccia.
For me though, Turkish food is all about the mixed meze followed by a huge plate of meat, and the hot meze platter was beautifully presented and huge in size, if not take-your-breath-away in flavour.
My main more than made up for that though, consisting of four perfectly charcoal grilled lamb chops garnished with served with a glittering array of grilled vegetables, rice and salad in that way that only the Turkish do.
My vegetarian dining partner’s whole sea bass was just as good too, and maybe, just maybe, will lure me away from the meat on my next visit.
A carafe of Voignier and a huge slice of cheesecake rounded off a very enjoyable Saturday night, and you can tell the locals approve too.
Whisper it quietly, but Blackstock Road is going global.