Turkish Toast, Cold Apps, and Manti at Cafe Fulya
I love that Philly has several excellent options for Turkish food (See S&H Kebab Houseand Hamifgash). I have another to add to my list now. Cafe Fulya is small and very casual with groovy furniture, large open windows, and a few tables and a couch inside and a table out in front. Being a cafe, a lot of the menu items are baked goods and cold appetizers. They also serve breakfast all day, including a traditional Turkish breakfast with too many components to list. I am not really an eating breakfast for lunch kind of girl, so I filled up on the other stuff.
For $15 you can order a sampler of 5 of the appetizers. I was looking forward to the shredded carrot dish, it sounded similar to an Uzbeki dish that I love, but they were unfortunately out. I loved the lemony red cabbage and artichoke hearts with fava beans and dill. The zucchini pancake was also great, and lighter than the Korean versions I am familiar with; it was like a zucchini omelet. The Russian salad was very funky, but in a good way; it had random ingredients like carrots, peas, and pickles. (I would be very down to try their hot dog sandwich next time- they have the balls to take a hot dog and top it with the Russian salad) The white bean salad didn’t have much to it; it was our least favorite.
The Turkish toast was exactly as I expected, a satisfying version of grilled cheese. They use kasari cheese, which melts beautifully. The toast can be stuffed with a choice of either Turkish salami or pepperoni. As they were out of the salami, we had the deliciously salty pepperoni. They must have a panini press behind the counter because the bread was perfectly toasted and smushed into the cheese. For $4 I could eat this simple sandwich any time of day.
Also, I should mention that the cafe does a lunch special with two appetizers or sandwiches or one of each for $8.
The only real entree available is manti, Turkish dumplings, with either a spinach or beef filling. The manti were small and steamed and topped with the traditional minted yogurt sauce. The consensus at the table was that the meat dumplings were better than the spinach; the meat just had more flavor. Both the spinach and meat manti were gobbled up and enjoyed, but the yogurt sauce is weak compared to the bold, yet balanced manti sauce at S&H.
Oh no! Man(ti) down!!
Cafe Fulya has a revolving stash of dessert selections. I was in to the dense Turkish fudge because it tasted like dark chocolate but without any bitterness.
With a full list of coffee drinks, Turkish juices, tea, and smoothies, I really wish instead of a Starbucks on every corner there was a Cafe Fulya.
THE + (What somebody who likes this place would say)
- The casual environment is perfect to get some work done or read a book while getting your coffee fix
- The cold appetizers hit the spot on a hot day
- Any time I can be served manti is a good thing
THE – (What somebody who doesn’t like this place would say)
- The manti at S&H are better and cheaper
- They don’t always have all of the menu items available
Cafe Fulya, 727 S. 2nd St (@ Monroe St), 267 909 9937