Family-run Kurdish cafe and restaurant Nandine has announced that it will launch a third outpost on the site previously occupied by Mike + Ollie on Camberwell Church Street. It is scheduled to open on
Monday 15 April 4 July.
Nandine originally launched on Vestry Road in 2016, quickly building a reputation for exemplary mezze and home cooked baklava — not only is it among the finest in Camberwell, it is one of the best value restaurants anywhere in London. As such, Nandine expanded last year, with a smaller concession in the Peckham Levels development.
Nandine — which means ‘kitchen’ in Kurdish — is run by matriarch Pary Baban, her husband Pola, and sons Rang and Raman. It serves a menu of brunch dishes, meze, and intricate pastries. Vast mezze platters served in the evening are immaculately presented and include outstanding kubba (minced beef and rice patties), onion dolma, and qawarma. Pastries such as borek — made with a unique Kurdish pastry called galgali — and baklava are also peerless, made in-house to regional recipes.
In the recently published guide to London’s best value restaurants, Jonathan Nunn wrote: “If London was New York, then this Kurdish cafe would be the subject of food pilgrimages and glossy weekend magazine features...It’s one thing to make hummus well, but it’s another to nail all eleven components of their vegetarian mezze, from the vine leaves to the qawarma.”
The menu at the new site will focus on mezze and small plates with a few carefully selected larger dishes. There will be a seven spice chicken shawarma, and a spicy mutton kebab similar to a Turkish Adana. A dish of kifta — meatballs stuffed with almonds and raisins and served in a chickpea broth — promises to be a menu highlight and the family hopes to install a tandoor in the kitchen. They’ll also be serving cocktails.
Rang Baban told Eater London that the family hopes to “bring traditional Kurdish dishes meze to Camberwell, served in a contemporary style.”
Pary Baban’s nephew Yada runs Yada’s — a coffee kiosk at Elephant and Castle and Yada’s Kurdish Restaurant in Peckham.