If you work in the Place Luxembourg area, you are likely already familiar with El Turco. Having just started a new job in the neighborhood, it was a welcome discovery after years of cafeteria eating. Located on Rue du Trone just around the corner from Place de Londres, El Turco is a cross between a high-quality deli, restaurant and bar. Similar to others in my office, I’ve quickly become a fan, stopping by at least once a week.
As the name suggests, the food (and I’m assuming the owner as well) is Turkish. Laid out in a self-service buffet, the various cold and hot dishes change daily and offer a wide variety of choice. The website describes the food as “Mediterranean cuisine with Ottoman influences”. Sounds pretty good to me.
I’m partial to the humus, grilled aubergine, fresh salads and usually go for one of the hot dishes, like chicken or lamb on the side. They also have delicious prepared items like feta cheese in pastry and vegetable tarte which are hard to resist. They even have typical Turkish bread like you would find sold on the streets of Istanbul.
Once you’ve filled your plate, or take-away box, and reached the cash register, the payment is simple – the cost is based on weight. They have a selection of drinks and a few desserts to choose from as well. If you decide to eat in, you can always go back for seconds, which is tempting as everything I’ve tried to date has been delicious. In total, I usually pay around €10, depending on how hungry I am on a particular day. Not cheap for lunch, but worth every bite.
If you’re looking for something different for a meeting (who else never wants to see an open-faced sandwich again?), El Turco offers catering and lunchbox delivery. The cold mezze buffet is €12 per person, with a supplement of €3 per person for hot food. The lunchbox is a pretty good deal at €9 per person, which includes 5 cold mezze and 2 warm dishes (minimum of 5 boxes for delivery).
The kitchen is open all week for lunch and also for dinner from Wednesday to Friday. There’s currently a special deal running for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights – an all you can eat buffet for €20. They also can open on Monday and Saturday nights for group reservations (minimum 30 people).
As mentioned, El Turco also has a bar, which is located in the back of the restaurant (or via Place de Londres entrance). I’ve not yet gone for an after work drink, but it would be a good place to stop between the office and the metro after a long day. They have live music on Friday nights to liven the mood. Check out their Facebook page for upcoming events.
Afiyet olsun! (That’s bon appetit in Turkish, at least according to Google translate :))
73 Rue du Trone (6 Place de Londres), 1050 Ixelles
Tel: +32 2 503 3648
Open: Kitchen – Monday to Friday, 11am-3pm, Wednesday to Friday, 6-10pm; Bar – Tuesday to Friday, 5pm to late
Images via El Turco.