Roasted onions in FM Mangal's secret sauce
The call went out for a boys night dinner at my local Turkish restaurant. Sadly, they were fully booked when I called to reserve a table, so the hunt was on for another top South London Turkish. A bit of internet searching brought us to FM Mangal in Camberwell on a rainy Friday night.
The first thing that hits you as you walk inside is the glorious smokey smell of meat cooking over a charcoal grill. It's a smell that can't help but get you excited about ordering some of their grilled meats.
We started with FM Mangal's signature dish, their complimentary roasted onions in a pomegranate sauce served with sumac dusted flat breads. The onions were probably my favourite dish of the night and we were all dipping the bread into the bowl to soak up as much of the pomegranate sauce as possible.
Hot mixed meze
The hot mixed meze (£8) was a varied bunch. I enjoyed the salty haloumi and sucuk (sausages), but the calamari and falafel were a disappointment. I wouldn't be surprised if the calamari came from a packet and wasn't home made.
Cold mixed meze
The cold mixed meze (£7) was a selection of dips with some tabbouleh thrown in. Familiar, but nothing standout. I was a little disappointed that the mized meze was almost exclusively a selection of dips. No vine leaves or grilled aubergines?
FM Mangal Special
Our final dish was the FM Mangal Special (£16) a mixture of quail, chicken wings, a lamb chop and shish kebab that had been cooked over the hot coals. All of the meats had a decent smokey flavour and the shish was surprisingly spicy. I'm presuming it had a flair slug of red pepper paste that I discovered on my recent trip to Turkey.
FM Mangal is decent value and the roasted onions in pomegranate sauce are (almost) worth the trip alone. However, it doesn't surpass Brockley's Meze Mangal as my favourite Turkish in London.
54 Camberwell Church Street