For all you foodies travelling to Antalya, there is a quiet revolution going on in the kitchen at the Vanilla Lounge in the Old Town. My wife and I first encountered the great food at the Vanilla Lounge back in 2010 and things there are are just going from strength to strength.
The Vanilla Lounge is owned and run by talented chef Wayne and his Turkish wife Emel who looks after the guests. Wayne is very self deprecating, but he has worked for the best in London and with the current range of dishes coming out of his kitchen, his talents are really starting to shine through. Wayne uses a water bath in a similar process to Heston Blumenthal and so any of you used to tough, overcooked steaks are in for a real treat.
We ate there 4 times during our 5 day stay and the food was just fantastic every evening. Of my starters, I cannot decide whether I preferred the chicken livers done in a delicious cream based sauce or the pan seared fois gras. For my mains, my favourite was the filet accompanied by a delicious red wine reduction, closely followed by the amazing lamb filet again in a mouth watering sauce. The steak and lamb were just so tender and flavoursome, all down to the water bath preparation.
There is a good wine list either by the bottle or the glass and a great pre-dinner cocktail list. There is also a rather astonishing new recruit. We were offered a chance to try a newly arrived cherry red wine. Now I know this sounds rather odd, but it is absolutely wonderful. Do try it, you really won't regret it.
With a lovely new exterior eating area and with such amazing food, the Vanilla Lounge is a great place to eat. It is really welcoming, Wayne and Emel are great hosts and if you are after something simpler, there are excellent pizzas on offer. But the Vanilla Lounge really is a treat for all those who enjoy good food. Highly creative, innovative cooking from a very talented chef. My wife and I enjoy our food, and enjoy visiting good restaurants and the dishes coming out of the kitchen here would not be out of place in some of the best London restaurants. Get it while you can, because in our view, Wayne is a Michelin star chef in the making.
Prof Lester Lloyd-Reason
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