This small restaurant with Turkish ornaments on the optimistic orange walls was an American dream for its owner, Mustafa Duru, 30, who came to New York 12 years ago.
"I started with dishwashing and, now, I am the restaurant owner," said Duru, who is proud of his well-managed place. "It needs a lot of work, but it's worth it."
Duru didn't know how to cook when he came to America, but he learned after working for other Turkish chefs. Today, his restaurant is a favorite not only among Americans, but among local Turks as well, which proves the authenticity of its cuisine.
"I didn't expect to have Turkish clients," he said. "They are coming back, so I guess they like my kitchen."
The most popular item on the menu is vegetarian falafel, $5, which is made of chick peas, onions, parsley and garlic. The restaurant also serves chicken and lamb gyro, $8. These are layers of marinated meat wrapped around a large vertical spit and grilled in front of a charcoal fire.
All entrées are served with rice, lettuce, onion, grilled tomatoes and pita bread. It could also be topped with a local favorite - homemade garlic sauce.
"I don't have a cooking secret," said Duru. "I just smile and I think that it helps."
Since the portions are large, we didn't have any room for a dessert, but baklava, $4, seemed to be a perfect finishing touch. It is a sweet pastry made of thin sheets of phyllo dough layered with chopped nuts and honey syrup. It is baked with butter and cut into diamond shapes.
Each client prefers something different in Kestane Kebab.
"They have the best hummus in Brooklyn," said Iwona Hejmej, who often orders a chicken gyro sandwich with extra hummus, $6. "You can tell that it's always fresh."
The restaurant doesn't serve alcohol, but offers cooked Turkish coffee, $2.50, instead.
Greenpoint, 110 B Nassau Ave.
Sunday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 12 a.m.
Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.
Eat in, take out or free delivery
Specializes in Turkish dishes, like chicken gyro, adana kebab and lamb chops, with appetizers like eggplant salad, hummus and stuffed grape leaves. A meal for two - including drinks and two entrées - came to $23. Cash and credit cards accepted.
Source: Daily News, By Izabela Rutkowski
Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/brooklyn/2011/06/30/2011-06-30_turkish_delight_in_greenpoint.html#ixzz1Qo2ToaUX