I’ve been wanting to try out Gozleme Cafe ever since its big signs went up on London Circuit (close to UniPub) in the city.
Gozleme Cafe is only open Monday to Friday for breakfast and lunch. If you don’t work in the city, it can be difficult to find an excuse to visit.
I saw the menu after a work colleague brought it in to work. Prices are very reasonable and cheap! I made it my mission to pop in for breakfast on a day off.
There are a few tables inside with a glass display cabinet filled with various borek (a baked or fried pastry usually filled with cheese and other yummy things inside). Baklava sits on top of the counter as well as some Turkish Delight.
A closer look at the four borek available ($5 each) – mince meat, chicken gourmet, cheese and spinach, and chilli baked potato.
I decided to sit outside on what will probably be the last few warm mornings we have left this year. The outdoor setting is of a more traditional Turkish style with small stools and a very low traditional table with a metallic top engraved with patterns. I found my knees kept hitting the table so I had to angle my knees to the side, while twisting my body to try to get close to the table. I looked as awkward as that reads. But it does look lovely – all that’s missing is some shisha.
I knew I wanted one of the egg dishes. The lady behind the counter said the Menemen in sahan (the classic Turkish breakfast $9) was her favourite, so I went with that. A sahan is the traditional copper skillet that hot food comes in. The menemen consisted of onion, tomato, green peppers and egg. A side of Turkish bread is provided with all breakfast dishes and this was displayed nicely in a cute white canvas sack. The menemen is similar to a shakshuka but the eggs are scrambled. I thought this was delicious with a mix of subtle spices and tomato goodness. I really enjoyed dunking the Turkish bread in and scooping up the menemen mix. A simple dish done very well that really hit the spot. I forgot to ask whether the bread was made onsite.
I ordered Turkish coffee ($3.50) and was asked how many sugars I wanted as it is quite strong. I asked for one sugar and figured I could always add more in if needed. Little did I know that Turkish coffee is brewed differently – the coffee, sugar and water are mixed before they are simmered together. A thick layer of coffee grounds, almost like sludge, lies at the bottom of the cup (apparently keeping your coffee warmer for longer) so you can’t really stir in any more sugar after the coffee is made or it mixes the ‘sludge’ up, becoming undrinkable. The coffee came out in a beautiful traditional Turkish cup and saucer. A small glass of cold water was also provided which freshens the mouth before tasting the coffee.
The size of the coffee is small but you’re not meant to drink it quickly. Instead, you take little sips and enjoy. The colour is dark and looks chocolatey. After the initial bitter notes, I did begin to enjoy it. I’ll need more sugar next time.
The dried chillies placed in a small bowl on the table are great for those who require extra spice in their meals.
I couldn’t help admiring the patterns engraved on the metal table top. I would love to travel to Turkey one day.
Service was friendly and the lady behind the counter was very helpful in deciding on what to eat. I was impressed with the quality of food and the cheap prices. $9 for that breakfast is a bargain! Already thinking about lunch, I bought the chilli baked potato borek ($5) to go. Heated up, the pastry was still nice and flakey.
The filling is mashed potato mixed with chilli powder, capsicum salsa and onion. It’s a little spicy leaving a nice burn in your mouth but not spicy enough to start sweating. I liked it.
I also bought a single baklava to go ($2.50) which came in a little plastic container. A sweet tasty treat. No complaints here.
The only downside is the cafe is only open Monday to Friday for breakfast and lunch. If you don’t work in the city, you’ll either have to travel in on your lunch break or make sure you pop in on a day off. I don’t think there are any plans to open on the weekend at this stage. Definitely worth a try!