On Saturday night we sat around the kitchen table, my family and I, and had a takeaway from the Turkish restaurant on our high street. We opened box after box: chunky tzatziki; calamari in crisp batter; salty ovals of sucuk; flatbread studded with black and yellow sesame seeds; hot homemade falafels, crunchy outside and yielding within, smeared with cool hummus. And, which I’d been missing since lockdown began, lamb ribs: skin salty and crisp from the grill, the meat underneath sweet and chewy, tarring their bed of rice.
God it was bliss. But it made me feel melancholy, too. Meze & Shish only opened in the past couple of years — a well-appointed, tableclothy sort of local restaurant, well priced and serving first-rate grub.