For the second time in as many weeks, I had dinner tonight at “The Balkan“. Or should I say “The New Balkan” or “The Original Balkan”, as “The Balkan” continues to exist, in another form, further up on Oxford Street. As you might say on Facebook, “it’s complicated”.
I’ve been going to The Balkan for as long as I’ve lived in Sydney which is now almost eighteen years. I’ve always liked the informality of the place, I’ve liked the friendly service, and I’ve liked the food. Although they have some terrific salads, especially the potato/coleslaw mix which is to die for, it’s really the meat that’s the restaurant’s main attraction. The mixed grill is a favourite of mine, as it combines a lot of different tastes, and that’s what I had tonight. Yummo.
The history of The Balkan goes back even further, as the current owner, John took over the business from his parents, now retired, but featuring in a photograph on their website. He’s a lovely guy. He always has a smile on his face, he always makes you feel very welcome. And so when he announced he was moving the business from Oxford Street to Crown Street, and calling it “The Original Balkan” our group, like lots of others it seems, followed suite.
They’re now located opposite The Columbian which is probably a good thing, as the part of Oxford Street where they once were, has become reasonably quiet, with quite a few empty shops. It no longer has “the buzz” it once had. In contrast, there are lots of places to eat in the nearby vicinity. Here’s hoping they do well.