Farah Baig is treated to a divine spread at Günaydin. One thing was made very clear: there are few things as amazing as a Günaydin-style Turkish feast.
Turkey is one of the most popular tourist destinations among GCC nationals, with food being a major driving factor for its popularity. As someone who has visited the country, I can attest to that. So, I was naturally overjoyed when we were invited to review the most luxurious Turkish restaurant in Bahrain - Günaydin.
Walking into the restaurant, you can’t help but admire its opulence with its high ceilings, emerald green and gold interiors, and stunning chandeliers. Glass displays filled with traditional Turkish salads, juicy cuts of meat and kebabs whet your appetite.
To begin our dining experience, we were served a kaleidoscope of fresh salads and mezzes. Of these, a truly addictive stand out was the Tulum Peynirli Salata, which beautifully combines fresh greens and cherry tomatoes with the sweetness of pomegranate and raisins, and the delightful crunch of walnuts. The Antep Patlican, which are dried eggplants stuffed with rice and meat, and Turkish kibbeh were delicious too.
While the starters are delicious, the crowning glory of Günaydin is their meats and the table-side presentation that comes with it. Our host expertly torched a massive beef rib which effortlessly fell off the bone, before sprinkling it with flakes of sea salt and chopping it up. This was followed by the fragrant Günaydin Spesiyal which are divine slices of beef tenderloin and luxurious oyster mushrooms in clarified butter. Every single morsel was succulent and memorable. The expertly cooked meat was melt-in-the-mouth tender and flavourful.
The Soslu which is a kebab wrapped in freshly made bread paired beautifully with the slightly sweet flavor of the tomato sauce and crunch of the pistachios. The Saslik, kebabs and other grilled meats were delicious too! We loved the fact that you’re encouraged to mix and match the pickles and dips with the meats served to experiment with flavours. Their deliciously cheesy Pide was the epitome of comfort food.
The restaurant serves the very finest of meat; so, if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, you can try out some of their raw dishes including Cig Kofte (a traditional Turkish dish), Beef Carpaccio or Steak Tartare.
To end our meal, our host put on yet another show, expertly slicing our desserts before sliding the platters onto the table. The Baklava is flown in from Turkey every week and truly tantalizes your taste buds. The buttery, yet light flaky phyllo dough is filled with generous helpings of ground pistachio and served with Turkey’s famous icecream. The warm pastry and ice cream is surprisingly light and serves as the perfect finish to our feast which we washed down with refreshing mocktails.
After devouring countless dishes at the restaurant, I can tell you that the venue is very deserving of all the buzz it’s been getting. Günaydin has all the factors that make a dining experience truly memorable: fresh ingredients, showmanship, ambience and rich flavours.