It was overwhelmingly voted the People’s favourite at our Oliver awards this year so with a day off and a baking hot start to the Bank Holiday weekend it seemed a good excuse to see what the fuss was all about at Olive and Feta.
Very popular with the local foodies in Farsley, I was actually a little surprised when we arrived for the 7pm booking that there was only one other couple there given the weather, school holidays and bank holiday.
In the last year or so since we last visited the main dining area has been revamped and with plush peacock green velvet seats, lower lighting and wooden floors it really does give off a more relaxing yet posh feel.
We were seated and given the menu to peruse for both food and drink with our drinks order being taken first.
Two large glasses of wine and a beer for us all were welcome refreshment while we looked over the menu.
Branding itself as a Turkish/Italian restaurant with a Mediterranean twist you can expect dishes you would find in such places on your summer holidays, and with temperatures to match on this visit - it did actually feel like that.
Originally just planning to have a main course we were quickly convinced by the starters menu.
Feta and Olives (would be one for Trading Descriptions Act if not) are top of the cold starters list with Bruschetta and Duck pate among others. However, we all chose from the hot starters.
I was spoiled for choice before I even considered a main course.
There are some tasty examples of Turkish cuisine here with Dolma which is sweet pepper stuffed with mince, tomato sauce and Turkish bulgur rice as well as Sigara Boregi which is Feta cheese, parsley and spinach wrapped in Filo pastry.
But, after a summer holiday in Santorini I am now borderline obsessed with halloumi cheese so opted for that while the rest of the party picked fried calamari and garlic mushrooms.
Service has been fast and friendly up to now with drinks and food being served up promptly.
Our starters arrived with a plateful of calamari, as much as you would want of garlic mushrooms in so rich a sauce and some Turkish bread which is like hot pitta - but better.
The halloumi, while lightly salted, gently grilled and generally delicious was a little disappointing, in that for the price of £6.50, was just two slices compared to the size of the other starters and knowing that to purchase either wholesale or from the supermarket is a third of the price.
Moving on to the mains though and again there were so many dishes I would have picked.
From pizzas to pasta, main dishes also feature a typical Turkish dish called Karniyarik which is aubergine stuffed with minced lamb, tomato and garlic and oven baked; Kavurma Turkish style fajitas with lamb, chicken or veg and spices, cacik, ezme and mozzarella; lamb skewers and shish kebab.
I picked meatballs cooked in a casserole dish with Med veg and mozzarella while my companions picked sirloin steak in peppercorn sauce and Ottoman chicken.
They certainly put to bed the halloumi disappointment .
The dishes seemed charmingly rustic and authentic and just like you were eating a home-cooked meal at a Mediterranean family gathering. Oh and by this time, the restaurant is packed with no spare tables but the chatter and laughter makes for a relaxed atmosphere.
Served with salad and Turkish bulgur, the food was hearty, tasty but not over-powering with the spices and richness of sauces.
The portion of steak was much more for the money than I have seen in some ‘fine-dining’ restaurants and none of us were over-faced or still hungry.
Some of us though were swayed by desserts which were read off the top of her head by the waitress and included chocolate orange cake, vanilla cheesecake, something very chocolatey sounding.
Although it wasn’t mentioned I just asked for a single scoop of ice-cream which they duly obliged, and didn’t even bill for, while my two pals picked chocolate orange and cheesecake which were £4.25 each.
They were super generous portions and whether they were home-made or not kind of seems irrelevant as they were both delicious. The first like an actual Jaffa Cake but better and the second was a perfect combination of creamy vanilla and crisp biscuit base - well I had to try a little bit of each didn’t I?
From the drinks list we had two lovely large glasses of Sauvignon, a second small one each and the other half had three bottles of Peroni.
The total bill came to £68.20 which for three people, with drinks, good service and tasty good food is superb value and easy to see why Olive and Feta is a Farsley favourite.