By Daniel White
Translated by Anna Yang
150, JingCheng Rd, West Dist
Hours: Mon-Fri 11 am-2:30 pm, 5-10 pm;
Sat-Sun 11 am-10 pm (closed Tue)
Anatolia is hands down my favorite place to get Turkish food in Taichung. This small, unassuming restaurant is easy to miss, hidden among the shops on JingCheng Road, but once you try the culinary treats inside you'll come looking for it again and again.
Entering Anatolia, you are greeted by friendly staff and upbeat Middle Eastern music that adds so much to the cozy atmosphere. The menu is comprehensive, with great dishes for carnivores and vegetarians alike, and everything is delicious. During my visit, we started with Tarator (NT$200) from the appetizer selection. This yogurt-based dish is slightly spicy and tart with cucumbers to cool the palette. Although it comes with fresh-baked bread for dipping, I recommend also getting an order of Turkish Lavash (NT$75), a flat bread which is perfect for scooping up the cucumber as well as any sauce on your choice of main dish.
For our main course, we opted for Tavuk Sac Kavurma (NT$250), which features a generous portion of tender, succulent chicken with green peppers, onions and tomatoes in a slightly spicy sauce with soft long-grain white rice, and the Firinda Karisik Sebze (NT$200), featuring soft well-stewed and seasoned vegetables smothered in a layer of melted cheese. For an extra NT$99, you can also upgrade any course to a set meal and add your choice of soup or drink as well as a salad or desert.
The salad was great for whetting the appetite and came with a light vinaigrette dressing. For a drink, I tried Ayran, a yogurt-based beverage that has an intense sweet and salty flavor. To cap off my meal, I also enjoyed Turkish Cay (NT$70), a medium-bodied black tea that was perfect after a delicious and very filling meal.
For customers and passers-by looking to cool off in the summer heat, Anatolia also serves Turkish ice cream from a small stand in front of the shop for NT$50.