TURKISH FOOD FESTIVAL
By Yeru Ebuen — The truth is, I never really knew what people meant by Turkish delights. I’ve heard it so many times but it’s one of the things I didn’t pay much attention before. Until I’ve met face to face the ‘actual’ Turkish delights. On February 22, the Turkish Food Festival officially kicked off at the Sama Terazza rooftop lounge of Park Inn Muscat in Al Khuwair. In the midst of a very formal gathering, it was hard to ignore the pervading smell of delicious food in the air. It’s a food festival seldom seen in Oman. An organized event that has the full support of the Turkish Ambassador to Oman Atilay Ersan who was present at the event’s launching.
Ersan shared during his short speech that for the Turkish, food is one of their ways in showing their hospitality. Food is in itself, their way of being hospitable.
The event was made possible in cooperation with Turkish Airlines and Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa Istanbul.
Nuno Neves, cluster general manager for Park Inn Muscat and Park Inn Duqm, candidly shared that the food festival started out as a crazy idea. In the sideline of the event, he shared that he hatched the idea with his team a few months back.
He noted that there are a lot of Turkish food establishments in Muscat. He took that as a sign that Turkish cuisines have amassed a following among the country’s residents.
“It’s really amazing to see a dream coming true,” Neves said. “Over the next 10 days, residents of Oman can experience not only some of the best Turkish cuisines, they will also have an opportunity to experience a vibrant, remarkable rooftop ambience while authentic Turkish music serenades foodies while they enjoy the delicious food offering.”
To make the event more memorable for the partakers, Neves shared that they flew in Istanbul’s remarkable Chef Yavuz Yigit who couldn’t get more excited to have such a wonderful opportunity.
“We are pleased to be part of this festival and very glad to introduce the cuisine in Oman. We have flown all the way from Istanbul to share this festival with the people here,” he said.
The executive chef of Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa Istanbul, Tuzla, Turkey added, “I have heard there are a lot of good Turkish restaurants here and am looking forward to sharing our expertise.”
Asked what types of cuisine people can expect in the 10-day festivity, Yigit said that they’ve made their food preparation as diverse as possible.
“They’ll definitely see how we prepare our very own version of Turkish delights. They are authentic and delicious and they really must-try,” he said.
He added, “We also brought along with us our popular kebabs and doner. These are some of the best that we offer in Turkey,” he added.
The launching was attended by some of Oman’s socialites, media outlets and foodies.
“This is truly a wonderful opportunity to enjoy this remarkable dishes. I would urge all food lovers to bring their family with them and experience this event at least once,” Neves said.
Asked whether the festival is a onetime thing, Neves said that if the food festival will click with Oman residents, they will definitely bring it back next year.
“We have to see if this is something residents of Oman will be interested with. We’d love to see happy guests coming here. We’d love to hear their feedbacks, their recommendations. That’s how we will measure the success of this event. If we hear great feedbacks, then, Oman will definitely see more,” Neves said.
Other than Ambassador Ersan, the event was also graced by the presence of Turkish Airlines General Manager Abdullah Omer Celik.
The food festival welcomes everyone. The OMR15 payment will already cover the cost of a buffet meal and drinks.
The event will run from February 23 until March 4, 2017. For more information, you can call +968 2450 7888 or email firstname.lastname@example.org