Review: Charcoal grill creations and a competitive price will have you going la-la for Lalezar
This is what the adage never judge a book by its cover must mean.
From the outside Lalezar may look rather unassuming, a former social club turned restaurant, but once inside it’s not long before you realise why this eatery has been building up a loyal customer base keen to snap up a taste of the Med on their Doncaster doorstep since opening three years ago.
Standard decor, laminate flooring and faux leather chairs soon go out of the large windows - proverbially speaking that is - as you immerse yourself into Turkish cuisine.
The family-run restaurant has built up its reputation by word of mouth - appealing to groups and couples of all ages.
The main event starts once you get a menu in your hands.
Here you are presented with an array of authentic Anatolian dishes, cooked perfectly by head chef Suleyman Koca.
We opted to share our order of hummous and sucuk - grilled spicy Turkish sausage. Sliced into thin strips, the sucuk packed a punch without being overpowering, while the hummous, with its slightly grainy nutty texture with a hint of lemon made a refreshing accompaniment.
Our starters were served with traditional Turkish bread - but be warned don’t overfill on this because the mains are where the restaurant really earns its stripes.
Predominantly kebabs, but with traditional fayre such as moussaka and falafel as well as several fish dishes, the most difficult thing about Lalezar is choosing what to order.
After much deliberation and advice from the attentive waiting staff we plumped for Tavuk and Karisik.
Cooked on a charcoal grill in view of diners, this selection of kebabs is the go to choice for those who cannot make their mind up.
I opted for the Tavuk which was chicken skewers served with rice and salad.
Presented before my dining partner was a huge plate full of chicken and lamb shish, marinated lamb pieces and lamb spare ribs.
The conversation waned slightly as we tucked into the over generous portions, but I was assured that the Karisik was hitting the spot’.
The complimentary Baclava that followed was somewhat unnecessary.
Competition from similar restaurants is keeping the Koca family on its toes and they are responding in great fashion.
And with two starters, mains and a bottle of Malbec for under £58 it’s also not bad on the wallet.
* Lalezar, Laith Gate, Doncaster. Tel: 01302 215770
Star ratings out of five:
Three more to choose from:
ZEUGMA, LONDON ROAD LOKANTA, GLOSSOP ROAD, BROOMHILL CAFE DES AMIS, CHESTERFIELD ROAD