Hey dolls! So today's post is going to be a restaurant review as I haven't done one of these in absolutely forever which is slightly silly of me considering I eat out at least once a week. Anyway, I have been in a bit of a culinary rut where I tend to eat the same type of foods over and over and having not had any Turkish food in a long while, I decided to Visit Antep last week Wednesday on a good friend's recommendation. Antep is an authentic Turkish restaurant situated on Ladypool road in Sparkhill Birmingham and I must say it wasn't that hard to find with the aid of a satnav but parking was very tricky and we had to park on one of the side roads and walk down a bit but we didn't mind. I must say it doesn't look like much from the outside and is sandwiched between a chicken shop and a currency exchange but I try not to judge a book by its cover and was not put off by the location.
Once inside, the first thing I noticed was the size which is not very big at all but it was well decorated and had a nice homely feel to it. Each table was laid with cutlery, napkins and side plates and I also liked the added touch of a rose in the center of the table which just brightened up the place. We were not greeted upon arrival and stood awkwardly for a couple of minutes before we were finally acknowledged by someone I assumed to be one of the managers or owners. He showed us to a very awkward table between the bar area and the grill which only had one chair and which was also awfully close to some dinners that were already sat down. After an additional chair was found and the table was moved slightly we sat down but it was still very crammed and awkward and I couldn't even turn around to drape my jacket over my chair. Undeterred we sat down and chatted for a bit and looked over the menu which was very clear and easy to read with a lot of choice; there was definitely something for everyone. When we were finished looking over the menu someone came round to take our order.
We decided to try one cold starter; the hummus and a warm starter of a Turkish beef sausage called Sucuk. We also ordered our main at the same time and we went for a sharing platter called the Antep platter which consisted of lamb ribs, chicken wings, lamb and chicken doner, adna kofte and lamb and chicken shish served with rice, bulgar wheat and salad. The starters came out fairly quickly which I loved because I was absolutely starving but I noticed that our salad and condiments which were meant to be served with our main came with the starters which I found odd. The food was absolutely tasty and the hummus and warm bread was my favourite and I could have eaten this all night. The hummus had so much flavour and had such a lovely creamy texture and accompanied with the bread was just to die for. I wasn't as excited about the sausage which was just a little bit bland for my tastes, I was expecting it to be a lot spicier and have a lot more kick but it was pleasant nonetheless.
Our main soon followed after the starter and I honestly don't mind that we were not given the chance to finish our starter before it was brought out but considering we were on a tiny table in the most awkward of positions I thought it would have been common sense for the staff to wait for us to finish our starters and clear those away before bringing over the mains. We made it work however and dived into the main which was a very good portion that could have easily fed 3 or 4 people. All the meat was so tasty and well cooked and my favourite had to be the lamb ribs which were so full of flavour. The lamb shish was tasty but a bit on the dry side but other than that everything else on the plate was so delicious and I was actually surprised how much we managed to finish. During the meal no one came to check on us and ask if our meal was okay or if we needed anything more and at one point I literally had to flag down a member of staff just to order another drink. There was just a general lack of awareness and no one came over even to clear away empty glasses or the starter plates from before and I just thought the service in general left much to be desired with staff walking around aimlessly and not paying the care attention needed to customers.
Prior to visiting the restaurant I phoned ahead to try and book a table but was told they didn't do bookings and just advised me to show up which I just thought was quite an outdated practice and that they could really benefit from booking people in. I was also told during this call after specifically inquiring that it is a cash only restaurant and upon visiting I noticed that not once did anyone tell me this was the case and that they were no signs to indicate this which I just thought was not ideal as it would be wise to communicate this to customers prior to being sat down at a table.
All in all the food was absolutely tasty and I would definitely recommend it but I don't know if I would return to Antep for a sit down meal as the service was just not up to standard and has a lot of room for improvement. I would definitely order a takeaway and enjoy the food in the comfort of my own home and would recommend it to a friend purely on the merit of the food which was so tasty and such great value for money with our entire meal for two coming up to about £35 including drinks which is very good by my books especially considering the very generous portions. If you're ever in Sparkhill I recommend giving Antep a visit and if you've been to Antep before and had a similar or different experience I would love to hear about it so leave me a comment below. Hope you guys enjoyed this post and found it helpful. Toodles!