BY SHEILA DIAMOND
Queens, with its plethora of cuisines, is an epicurean dream.
Luckily, one does not have to travel far for superb Middle Eastern and Mediterranean dishes, as the Kebab House can be found right on Northern Boulevard in Little Neck.
The night we dined there we were greeted royally by owner Ramazan Ay, who has created a colorful, yet cozy and warm atmosphere for patrons. Ay had the table set with an array of appetizers, fragrant and delectable, which included humus, a grilled eggplant salad called Patlican, stuffed grape leaves, Yalanci Dolma, pan-fried phyllo rolls stuffed with feta cheese, Sigara Borek and an amazing platter of calamari made in a seasonal flour batter sautéed to perfection and served with his very own special sauce made of Italian bread and an egg yolk . . . amazing. There was a choice of beverages including some Turkish wine and soft drinks.
Ay took great delight in describing the freshness of his food and in making sure his customers are happy with his own special touches. The staff was warm and attentive to our needs as well.
We were enjoying the ambiance of his restaurant and all the appetizers thinking we couldn’t possibly eat any more when Ay placed before us a sampling of grilled meats seasoned with Turkish spices. This was served on top of a bed of rice and vegetables. There was Doner Kebab, vertically grilled lamb sliced very thin; Kofte Kebab, char-grilled ground lamb; and chicken shish-kebab served with a cool and refreshing yogurt sauce. There is something for every taste on the menu, from grilled meats to vegetarian dishes and superb fish choices including a char-grilled Branzino and European sea bass marinated in lemon and parsley.
The restaurant was filling up as we were sampling and enjoying and all those around us seemed to be enjoying the warmth, the background Turkish music and the fragrant dishes being served.
The food was so plentiful and again we could not imagine eating any more, but how can one resist dessert? Before us was placed a tray filled with sweets like baklava, rice pudding and Halva and Tahini pasta with pistachios. Delicious!
We thoroughly enjoyed our tasting and the Kebab House’s wonderful hospitality. We traveled to Turkey without ever leaving home.