No More Delicious Turkish Food
Well, not totally. But it is a notable event that the major modern Turkish restaurant in Lənkəran has closed. It was called Hanedan and featured one of the best lentil soups I’ve ever had. It was a creamy blend of lentils and spices that dripped tangy, rich flavors off the bread you dipped into it. But apparently that tantalizing lentil soup wasn’t enough to keep the money rolling in. Instead, Hanedan fell prey to the evils of the rent collector. There was some speculation that there were hefty bribes being charged for the property and that under the weight of those bribes, the restaurant could not continue to function. Yet, a more clarified line of information has brought us word that it was, in fact, the high rent on the centrally-located establishment. This is doubly sad because Hanedan was one of the few eating places where respectable women could show their faces. There are still a few more around Lənkəran, which is more than can be said for a lot of other regions of Azerbaijan, but it would have been nice to have that restaurant here.
This also isn’t the first modern, fancy Turkish restaurant that has failed in Lənkəran. When we arrived in December, there was another place that had just opened, named Chicago Kafe (later changed to Mirvari, meaning pearl). Instead of a bustling business, the restaurant tired after three months of business and the metal gates have shuttered over the glass windows of the building. For us, Mirvari closing wasn’t a surprise. Location was poor and after a while, it was only the Americans and out-of-towners going there. With Hanedan, however, it seemed like they had a good business going. Locals went, and there was a good lunch crowd. I’m not sure what the rent amount was, but it was probably a fairly large sum. Yet, I cannot imagine what would go in that part of town so well as Hanedan did.