Soho’s Yeni is the vision of Civan Er, the acclaimed Turkish chef of Istanbul’s Yeni Lokanta. Serving traditional Anatolian fare with a modern twist, there’s no shortage of slow-cooked meat dishes (thanks to the charcoal josper grill) and plenty of zesty vegetables and salads with both local and imported ingredients. Yeni Home was created to bring the restaurant experience into the house and focuses on signature dishes that travel well and can be assembled at home.
Yeni Home isn’t your typical restaurant delivery meal. Dishes arrive cold or frozen and need to be heated and assembled before serving; however, don’t let this put you off, as the dishes are very easy to prepare and some dishes can be enjoyed at room temperature. At most, you’ll be reheating sauces on the hob, microwaving rice, boiling dumplings, or crisping lamb in the oven. Instructions for the dishes are included with the order, and they’re also online.
As the food comes cold or frozen, you’re given a delivery window of several hours. All orders come with a small spray bottle of limon kolonyasi, lemon-scented water that is used to clean the hands before eating, which is a very charming touch.
The appetizers and sides really steal the show: Mücver, fritters made with shredded courgettes and barrel-aged feta and dill, are perfect parcels of punchy flavour. Though it’s suggested that you eat these at room temperature, they crisp-up nicely in the oven. The börek is another star with layer upon layer of buttery filo, plus tangy cheese and herbs. These also reheat perfectly in a hot oven. Other notable dishes include fistikli dolama, sweet pistachio rolls for dessert. Dripping with fragrant syrup and vibrant green pistachios sourced from Antep, a southeastern province in Turkey, these paper-thin filo rolls are expertly prepared to create the perfect dessert—not too sweet or sickly (my only complaint was that there weren’t more).
For mains, Yeni sent two orders of the beef manti, which are hand-rolled dumplings that come frozen and must be boiled. The manti come with a double-fermented yoghurt sauce that needs re-heating on the hob. There were also two orders of lamb shank, which had been roasted for 48 hours over an oak-wood fire. The giant shanks need to be finished off in the oven for a bit of colour and then served with a re-heated grilled aubergine puree and fresh herbs (all provided, of course). Both mains were very filling, but they didn’t have the same moreish quality as the mücver, börek, or fistikli dolama.
I suggest getting several sides and mains and sharing everything, especially as the mains are on the large side (it was impossible to get through two servings of manti and two massive shanks). The ingredients are all fresh and high-quality, and I found myself wishing for more of the wonderful vegetables. For example, though the lamb shank had a great, fall-off-the-bone texture, it was the smokey, creamy roasted aubergine puree on the side that won me over. Next time, I’d love to go a little less meat-focused and try some of the fresh salads, of which there’s a nice selection, or opt for the dried aubergine manti in lieu of the beef manti, which was nice, but heavy.
Also, though it was great to have piping hot food (which isn’t always a guarantee when you’re getting delivery), it’s worth noting that the Yeni Home concept leaves you with a sink full of dishes to clean up; however, some may say it’s a small price to pay to enjoy wonderful Turkish food in the comfort of your own home.
Yeni delivers to greater London on Tuesdays and Fridays. Yeni accepts orders seven days in advance since the menu is always changing. The cut-off for next-day delivery is 12pm, and pick-up is also available. There is a minimum order spend of £30.