Kebab? Flatbreads? What is this place?
Black Axe Mangal is a relatively new kid on the block. And when I say block, I mean roundabout.
It is not the newest restaurant but the location makes it seem like a bit of a secret that you may miss it when going round Highbury Junction.
My friend has been going on about Black Axe Mangal (BAM) for a while and we finely took him up on the request and went. A Thursday night drink and food session is always welcome. Although he was an hour late, we managed to kill time on a warm summer evening at two pubs and bars round the corner.
In my mind, BAM was a new take on kebabs. Well this was what I was expecting plus a few fusion type dishes with an incorporation from the Middle East too. When the menu arrived, it all seemed very interesting.
BAM is less kebab than Le Bab, but has great additions. Flatbreads are the starter and sharing dish throughout the meal and offer great variety. Some of the toppings on the fluffy flatbreads are lamb offal, beef dripping, squid ink and even Welsh rarebit.
The flatbreads were all really good and are small meals in themselves. You could easily order four between two and be very, very happy. The range of flavours and toppings make each a delight. The bread mops up any juices and make sure that you get full too.
For mains we ordered a few dishes to share between us. We had a Dexter Onglet with Hash Browns, Pigs cheek and Buttermilk fried Quail with mission spice. Unfortunately, on the night we went they had run out of their Mutton Chop, which I have heard since and before is supposed to be very good.
The Quail was really tasty. The mission spice and crunch of the bird made you want to have more and more. When you are sharing with five other guys, you have to get every mouthful you can. What I had was lovely and the warmth of the spices madethe Quail a dish you want to stay on the menu.
The Onglet we had came with Heart and Kidney too. These were very interesting and we all had to have a sample of these delicate organs. The dexter was a good chunk of meat and cooked well. The fact that it was cooked on a Mangal (barbecue grill) gave it that extra texture which we all welcomed.
With an ever changing menu and the fact that the mutton was not available means another visit is on the cards. BAMs location near home and Laura's work place gives two extra reasons to visit.
My advice is get there early, order a medley of flat breads and a few other dishes. Treat yourself to a nice cocktail or beer of your choice and BOOM! Winner. Winner winner, fried quail for dinner.