Bishkek Restaurant Review: Park Cafe

You won’t find this Turkish standby in any of the Bishkek guides, but Park Cafe is definitely our go-to joint for Turkish cuisine.

Simit (bulgur and lamb) kebab with thyme and savory pepper

Some prices are a little higher than the Turkish places in the malls, and the decour is standard, but the food is clean and well-prepared, service is prompt and friendly, our bill has never been off,  they have daily specials with discount prices, and the tandoor meat. Tender. Fresh. Juicy. Melts in your mouth. They also have great kebabs, good soup and fırın sütlaç (oven-made rice pudding), year-round fresh green salad, crisp lahmacun and a great breakfast spread.  On weekends they provide a full Turkish breakfast spread all day – go with a few friends and split a table full of food.  Portions are man-sized and we rarely finish.

Arguably Bishkek’s Best Turkish Breakfast Spread. This is half the setting for two people.

Recommended Dishes: 

– The Soups are always good (especially the lentil – mercimen corbasi); around 100 som for a full portion, 70 for half

– For fresh salad, try the Corban Salatasi (sheperd’s salad), Mevsim Salatisi (Seasonal Salad) or Yesil Salatisi (Green salad); all about 100 som

– For breakfast, the Türk kahvaltısı (Turkish breakfast spead) is delicious (but a little pricey at 500 som/person); if on a budged, the menemen (which comes with lavash) and omelets are still very good, or you can go for the simple breakfast plate (around 250)

lahmacun

– If hungry, try the tandoor kebab with yogurt. Savory-sweet tandoor-oven slow-roasted mutton over a fragrant bed of rice is perfectly complimented by a spoonfull of sour handchurned yogurt. (450 som)

– To try something Turkish that we don’t often have in the west, go for the (abovepictured) simit kebab (300 som?) or lahmacun (200-250 som)

– If you want something a little lighter, they also make great chicken kebabs  with vegetable garnish (~250 som).

 

Practicalities:

Location: Erkindik and Kievskaya (on the ‘railroad park’, one block south of Chuy), next to a Begemont

Languages: Menu is in Turkish and Russian, but has ample pictures.  Waitstaff speak Turkish, Kyrgyz and Russian.  Most of the clientele seem to be either Turkish or local.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen another non-Turkish foreigner in there.

Price Range: Medium; around 300-500 som/person for a full meal (soup, salad, beverages, main course)

Does not serve: alcohol

Great for: Food. And watching Kral pop music videos.  There always seem to be a few tables of people discussing business in the restaurant. Go. Eat. You will not regret.

 

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One thought on “Bishkek Restaurant Review: Park Cafe

  1. Pingback: Things I Do Miss About Kyrgyzstan | Mountains And the Sea

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