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Turkish wine suggestions (Mevan restaurant Hitchin)


#1

I’m heading to Mevan (Turkish restaurant in Hitchin) with some friends tonight, which would seem a good excuse to try some Turkish wine.
Anyone have any experience of Turkish indigenous grapes?
Or any members local to the society been to Mevan and recommend any of the wines on their list?
Cheers.


#2

I’ve reasonable experience with Turkish grapes, but it isn’t easy finding great examples over here in the UK.

Sadly I find that since most people do not buy Turkish wine in Turkish restaurants, they only really list the lower price / higher volume brands. I wouldn’t really recommend those.

There are two red grapes that stand out for me: Kalecic Karasi (can’t spell it properly as it uses characters not in our alphabet), and Okuzgozu. The first tends to be lighter bodied and more cherry-like, alsmot pinot noir like when done properly. The latter can be more spicy, full-bodied and smooth, a bit along the lines of a grenache I guess.

There are some on the list worth trying of these.

Of the whites, I would recommend a Narince but the quality of these can be quite variable, but the top ones are lovely.

However, Turkey makes very nice wines from lots of international varieties as well, so try them if necessary :slight_smile:


#3

Cheers @robert_mcintosh. Appreciate the advice.

Will let you know re any success or expensive mistakes!


#4

Many years ago a friend working in Turkey bought back a bottle of Buzbag red. Very good.


#5

So unfortunately, as it turned out, there were actually minimal Turkish wines on offer. There was one Kalecik Karası which I think would’ve probably been worth a punt, but in the end the couple we were out with were less enthusiastic.
So ended up returning to relative safety and had a picpoul de pinet (can’t recall the details) which our friends had never heard of but were instant converts, and a bottle of this cahors, which was full of dark fruits, with a typical touch of tar and spicy smokiness. Went well with my minced lamb flatbreads and no doubt was an excellent match for my friends Turkish mixed grill.

As for Turkish wines, these 2 will be on my next order from TWS instead.


#6

All 3 Vinkara wines are well worth a try!


#7

I’m 20 days too late, but for what it’s worth Öküzgözü (‘Eye of the Ox’) - Boğazkere (‘Throat Burner’ - yes, really) blends are quite common in Turkey, and I remember enjoying one, but I haven’t seen the blend offered in the UK.


#8

Funny you should mention this as I had my first taste of Öküzgözü only last week! Some friends and I went to our local Turkish restaurant (Misya in Stevenage) and had a bottle - it was a blend, and I can’t for the life of me remember the other grape so it may well have been Boğazkere.
It was lovely and light and easy-drinking - uncomplicated but also not expensive, and nice to sip in good company. Definitely worth trying, especially if enjoying some Turkish food.


#9

I’m glad that you enjoyed that wine, Laura. I feel a bit sorry for Turkish wine makers right now. At home they can’t advertise or market their wares, thanks to a recent law prohibiting the “promotion” of alcohol. The domestic market for wine has never been big, but now the Turkish wineries are even more reliant on “us.”

“Misya” looks like a turkicised version of “Mysia” - a name for part of north-western Asia Minor that was in use long before the Turks arrived there. Turkish food: Lived off it for a year. Nice :grinning: