Monday, August 5, 2013

Balkanika

You ever have that moment where you always pass by a place and say, "I'd like to go there one day" but delay it forever. Balkanika is such a place for me. I walk by it so often but have never stepped into it...until now.
Mr. M&P and I were looking for a quick dinner and wanted to stay local (Hell's Kitchen). So we told ourselves to try a new place and of course we walked right by Balkanika. This time though we stopped and headed inside.

As a Mediterranean restaurant, it offered a lot of dips so we picked 4 to share ($12). We tried the roasted red pepper (sweet), the avocado (too creamy), the hummus (nutty), and the carp roe (fishy but not in a bad way). The dips came with a large basket of warm pita bread which we devoured. I really dislike it when places skimp on the bread for the dips. That wasn't the case here. Our favorites were definitely the roasted pepper and carp roe.
For my main dish, I got the grilled lamb sausages ($15) with potatoes and peppers. The sausages were juicy and had a light snap to the skin. The flavor wasn't gamy at all but instead had a nice heat to it. The potatoes were lightly lemony which helped with the fatty sausage. I enjoyed it.
Mr. M&P had the beef burek ($8) with a side of yogurt ($3) for dipping as recommended. This flaky pastry was really pretty being wound up in a spiral.
Inside the buttery crust was the ground beef and onions. I really enjoyed this rendition. The side of yogurt was really nice too. It's more loose than your normal yogurt which made it better for dipping. The super tanginess of it paired well with the richness of the burek.
I really enjoyed my meal at Balkanika. The food was good and quite affordable. It's a great neighborhood spot.

Balkanika
691 9th Avenue
New York, NY 10036
(212) 974-0300
balkanikany.com

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