28 July 2013

Bosphorus Fine Turkish Cuisine @ Pavilion KL

Price Range : Splurge 
Cuisine : Turkish 
Recommended For : Desperate needs to fill up on Turkish food. Perhaps not even then.  
Catphobia-Friendly? : Yes 

Istanbul has always held a special place in our hearts, despite the fact that it has been more than 10 years since our first encounter with the charming city. The increasingly frequent use of Istanbul as a backdrop for major movies lately only fuels our yearning to revisit its majestic mosques, food-lined streets, and of course, the beautiful Bosphorus. 

Undeniably, visiting Bosphorus (the strait) immediately would require a lot more time and cash than we are prepared to spend, so we were hoping Bosphorus (the restaurant) would be a soothing consolation. Making our way to the sixth floor of Pavilion KL, we happily strode into one the rare Turkish restaurants in Kuala Lumpur. 

Our excitement came to an abrupt halt, however, when we took our first glance of the interiors. Firstly, there is nothing 'fine' (as the name suggests) about the ambiance. Between the high noise level, the abundance of restless children, and the smokey open kitchen, the place resembled more of your average family restaurant. 

Secondly, we were promised "a restaurant designed in a style to reflect Turkish hospitality" (according to its website, anyway). The servers were hardly hospitable (and, to add to the level of inauthentic-ness, approximately zero of them were Turkish), there were no elements of a typical Turkish restaurant incorporated into the decor (the quintessential nazar boncuğu was nowhere to be found, for starters) and no; no Tarkan tunes (or any form of Turkish music, really) were softly playing in the background. 

About as soulless as it gets.

Going through the menu, we were somewhat calmed to see such favourites as Imam Bayıldı (roasted stuffed eggplants), Mercimek Çorbası (lentil soup), and the reason we came: Hünkar Beğendi. 

Hünkar Beğendi (translation: Sultan's Favourite) is a dish comprising of two exquisite components: a hearty lamb stew cooked in tomato sauce, which is served on a creamy bed of eggplant puree. The version served here hits all the right notes in terms of flavour, but the abysmal portion is not at all worth the RM58.80 price tag. 

Deciding to give a medley of their grilled meats a try, we opted for the Mixed Grill platter (RM78.80). We enjoyed the juiciness of the lamb and chicken shish kebabs, the well-marinated grilled chicken bits, the flavourful lamb meatball, and the deliciously buttery rice. Unfortunately, most mixed grill platters we've had elsewhere are just as delicious, and usually go for half the price of Bosphorus'. 

The only saving grace of the night: a good, strong cup of Turkish Tea (RM4.80)

Disappointingly, it seems like Bosphorus is more an approximation of a Turkish restaurant, than actually being one. It's safe to say that we would not be returning for a long time (if ever). Oh well, all the more reasons to plan a return to trip to our favourite city then! =) 

Bosphorus Fine Turkish Cuisine 
6.33 Level 6 
Pavilion Kuala Lumpur 
Jalan Bukit Bintang 
55100 Kuala Lumpur 
T: +603 2142 4000 

3.143698, 101.70753

An average of RM3 per hour parking in Pavilion. 
Flat rate of RM6 (weekdays) or RM8 (weekends) apply after 6pm.

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