TOPFood & DrinkRare Foodie Finds: Authentic Turkish Food in Tokyo and Beyond

Rare Foodie Finds: Authentic Turkish Food in Tokyo and Beyond

That kebab is lonely, it's time for you to add more Turkish dishes on your regular menu

By Cezary Jan Strusiewicz

Though still not as common as in Europe, kebab stands or trucks have slowly become more and more popular in Japan. From the middle of Shibuya to a stand in a local temple’s matsuri festival, kebab sandwiches and wraps are easier than ever to get. That’s the good news. The bad news is that street food is still just about all the contact that people in Japan have with Turkish food despite the country’s cuisine having so much more to offer. Here are a few places that can offer delicious authentic Turkish food in Tokyo and Kanagawa, and the best news of all is that they all offer takeout.

Posted by Ankara 宮益坂店|トルク料理 on Friday, 23 January 2015

Ankara (Tokyo)

With two locations in Tokyo, one in Shibuya and one in Shinjuku, Ankara is obviously doing something right. Depending on who you ask, the something might be their meat dishes, including nine varieties of kebab, or it might be the fact that the Ankara kitchens apparently aren’t afraid of using spices. The restaurant’s lentil soup and ekmek Turkish bread have also been singled out as the reasons for making Ankara your next lunch or dinner destination. All Ankara menu items are halal.

Where: Shinjuku, Shibuya

When:

Shinjuku – Lunch 11:30 AM – 3:00 PM (4:00 PM on Saturday, Sunday, and National Holidays), Dinner 5:00 PM – 12:00 AM (1:00 AM on Friday and Saturday)

Shibuya – Dinner 5:00 PM – 12:00 AM (11:00 PM on Sunday and National Holidays). 

Opening times are subject to change due to the State of Emergency and/or Golden Week.

Website

ege turkish food restaurant
EGE restaurant in Kamakura

EGE (Kamakura)

Two things immediately stand out about EGE. First is its convenient location, as the restaurant can be found right outside Kamakura Station. The second thing is the pricing, which is very reasonable given the aforementioned tourist-hotspot locale and the quality of the food. While definitely more geared towards the Japanese palate with a lesser focus on spices, all the dishes at EGE are incredibly flavorful and a masterclass of what one can do with chickpeas. For example, the Lamb Saute on Hummus with a side of falafel is a massive helping of the staple Turkish cuisine bean but it all has its own distinct taste and is mouthwateringly delicious. It also pairs nicely with a piece of freshly baked Turkish bread.

Where: Kamakura

When: 11:00 AM – 8:00 PM (closed on Tuesdays)

Opening times are subject to change due to the State of Emergency and/or Golden Week.

Website

Ceyhan (Yokohama)

What this tiny Turkish food eatery located near Motomachi lacks in terms of square footage, it makes up in its dedication to the basics. In a time when too many restaurants rely on pre-made or frozen dishes that they reheat and arrange nicely, Ceyhan makes a name for itself by cooking from scratch. From homemade yogurt to freshly-prepared hummus, a visit to Ceyhan is as close to dining in an actual Turkish home as you can get in Japan, right down to the homey décor and the cozy and welcoming atmosphere. Be sure to also try Ceyhan’s chewy Turkish ice cream, thankfully not served by one of those cheeky mischievous vendors.

Where: Ishikawacho, Yokohama

When: Lunch 11:30 AM – 3:00 PM, Dinner 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM (closed on Tuesdays)

Opening times are subject to change due to the State of Emergency and/or Golden Week.

Website

tokyo halal market

Bonus: Tokyo Camii Halal Market (Tokyo and online)

The Tokyo Camii, also known as the Tokyo Mosque, is the largest Muslim place of worship in Japan. It has strong Turkish roots, having been designed by the Turkish architect Hilmi Senalp who was inspired by grand Ottoman-style architecture. So when the mosque opened a Halal Market on its premises, it was given that it would have a great selection of Turkish food. In addition to it, they also have Indonesian, Malaysian, Pakistani, Arabic, and other products.

In the mood for Turkish bread? The market has everything from the Acma (Turkish style soft bagels) to Peynirli Pogaca cheese buns or sesame seed bagels. Have a sweet tooth? Try their baklava, possibly the most famous Turkish and Ottoman Empire dessert ever, with either walnuts or pistachios. It’s best paired with either classic Turkish-style coffee or tea, both available in this online store. The spices, condiments, pickles, and other products that many Turkish restaurants in Japan actually use in their cooking are also readily available. Free shipping is offered for purchases of over 9,990 yen.

Where: Shibuya

When: 10:00 AM – 7:00 PM

Opening times are subject to change due to the State of Emergency and/or Golden Week.

Website


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