Olive Thyme Turkish Cuisine is arguably Brisbane’s best Turkish restaurant, located in a gorgeous heritage-listed 1920’s Albion building.
Here at Olive Thyme ancient food traditions are given a fresh contemporary twist by the restaurant’s 3 chefs (including the owner and a dedicated pide and pastry baker) to make for a memorable dining experience. Here everything including the bread and yoghurt, dips, sauces and relished is made from scratch in-house.
The family friendly restaurant is beautifully decked out with dark polished floors, heritage leadlight glass trimmings, lofty casement windows, multi-coloured light fittings and Turkish touches such as a wall of beautiful ceramics and eclectic music including Turkish jazz. There's also a little fenced off kids play lounge with colourful cushions and banquette and drawers of age-appropriate toys, a place for kids to play whilst parents enjoy a glass of wine.
A centrepiece lit-up counter, in true Turkish tradition, displays all of the tempting entrée platters and freshly made desserts so diner can take a peek before ordering (Olive Thyme has full table service).
Recommended to start is a Dips Plate - a selection of the delectable house-made dips including Hummus Patirma (hummus with cured pastrami and currants), Muammara (cheme paste, walnuts, cumin, chili flakes, labne & garlic -infused olive oil), Togurtlu Kabak (house-made garlic yoghurt with Aegean style raw zucchini, roasted walnut, olive oil and dill) and the signature Olive Thyme (char-grilled eggplant & capsicum, green olives, oregano, garlic and lemon juice) served with puffed lavash bread straight out of the oven.
From the Pide oven a must-try is the Lahmajan (ground lamb mince, tomato, garlic, capsicum with char-grilled eggplant, sumak onion and fresh greens) and for vegans, the Sepzeli Pide (caramelized onion, spinach, capsicum, eggplant, two cheese and fresh greens).
A plentiful range of Mezes and Salads includes Kuru Dolma (rice-filled dried eggplant, warm house tomato relish and mint yoghurt garlic), Soujouk Haloumi (Turkish sausage and haloumi cheese with sesame fig relish) or Mediterranean Octopus (grilled octopus, dill, gherkins and baby capers with garlic, olive oil and lemon juice).
For Mains it’s hard to go past the Meat Platter (a mix of melt-in-the-mouth lamb and chicken shish and adana (hand-minced kebab) with warm house tomato relish and mint garlic yoghurt while other choices include Balik Shish (chargrilled barramundi with house tartar and crunchy chips), chargrilled Spicy Chicken Wings and Imam Bayildi (stuffed eggplant with garlic, onion, mushroom, paprika, cumin and tomatoes simmered in olive oil).
And save room for dessert with deliciousness such as Burma (hand-rolled hazelnut and walnut baklava and hazelnut ice-cream), Coconut Blueberry Friand and Firanda Sutlac (mastic rice pudding with cotton candy) on offer.
To finish, diners can enjoy a Turkish coffee or apple tea, espresso, latte, hot chocolate and standard teas or house made teas including mint, green, cinnamon.hamomile, cloves or lemon/ginger.
Drinks-wise, Olive Thyme has a cracking wine list, with wine served in stylish tumblers or you can BYO wine* (corkage charge of $4pp).
There’s also a ‘Little People’ menu of sesame calamari, chicken or lamb shish with rice and crunchy chips or cheese pide, along with small ice-cream or Turkish delight for $16pp (at time of visiting in Aug 2018).
Nice to know - Out back is a spacious enclosed deck which on busy nights is filled with diners and can also be booked for functions including parties, work do’s or weddings.
Need to know – Olive Thyme caters very well for dietary needs and allergies (the owner’s family has food allergies), with a great range of gluten and dairy-free and vegan options on the menu. As well as dine-in, takeaway is also available.