For me, the true test at any Mediterranean restaurant is the babaganoush, a traditional dip made with roasted eggplant, tahini, and garlic. It should be smooth with an intense smoky flavor. Naturally, babaganoush was the first thing I ordered for ST and I to share at Truva recently.
Rather than standard pita, Truva makes their own “pida” which was served with the babaganoush. Although texturally pleasing, there just wasn’t quite enough smokiness in the dip for my taste.
The new Turkish restaurant is located in the downtown spot vacated by Steak and Ale. There is a cheap parking lot right next door, so it’s convenient for dinner as well as lunch for local office workers.
A modern Mediterranean decor is made cozy with warm red accents, fireplaces, and plush booths perfect for sneaking a kiss from your date in between sips of wine. Owner Muzo Saritas assisted us in selecting a bottle of wine from their mostly Greek and Turkish list. ST and I ordered a bottle of spicy red although I think we ended up with a Napa cab. Sip, kiss, sip, kiss….delish.
Truva promises to “seduce your senses” with their sexy ambiance and even sexier entertainment. We nibbled on meze as the belly dancer swirled through the dining room in her gold costume to authentic music.
I know Mediterranean food is healthy. No creamy, buttery sauces to mask the robust flavors. Yet somehow, I find it a bit boring. It’s always a combo of the same ingredients…..olives, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers. Lamb, which can often be tough, dominates the meats. So I usually order something with ground lamb. Here, we tried the hot meze of minced lamb, beef, and herbs wrapped in phyllo dough and flash fried. A fresh salad with all the standard components, including feta cheese, provided a nice accompaniment to the heavy appetizer. So far, not thrilling.
But Truva’s shrimp casserole was awesome! Huge, perfectly cooked shrimp were baked with peppers, onion, mushrooms, and tomatoes beneath a bubbly mozzarella topping. Honestly, I would not have ordered it had the menu mentioned the tomatoes since I have an aversion to seafood with tomatoes (otherwise I love them, weird huh?), but that would have been a shame….we loved it!
Truva offers the standard selection of meze like grape leaves and falafel plus flatbread pizzas, kebabs, and entrees. Me and ST tried the lamb kebab, similar to kefta I’ve had many times, made with chopped lamb, peppers, onions, and paprika, skewered and grilled. Their version was enormous! Almost a loaf and served atop plain rice, the flavor was good although I wish it would have been a bit spicier. We also got the tender and flavorful beef tenderloin kebabs, cooked medium rare.
Our server, Joseph, was full of Turkish trivia, dispensed with a thick accent. He ran down the list of desserts. We chose the Kazandibi, a dense custard, reminiscent of flan, sprinkled liberally with cinnamon.
ST ordered a Turkish coffee. Potent stuff, it was served in a tiny espresso cup. Joseph explained that one’s future can be read from the pattern left by the grinds by turning the cup over onto its saucer. Unfortunately, the psychic that is usually there was absent the evening of our visit. Too bad, I’m sure it would have been a dramatic reading for ST!
Truva is located at 60 Andrew Young International Blvd. 404-577-8788 www.truvaatlanta.com