Honey-Road is female owned and operated, serving Eastern Mediterranean food. Chef Cara Tobin has been a James Beard award finalist 4 times and teamed up with Allison Gibson to open Honey-Road in 2017 that is only open in the evening. (Recently the duo opened a brunch spot called Grey Jay.) The corner building is in the popular pedestrian Church Street Marketplace and named for an ancient trade route in Turkey. The small plates (mezze) are meant to be shared and focus on locally sourced ingredients. For those that are unfamiliar with this cuisine the menu had a glossery on one side explaining the meaning of many terms, but the servers were also helpful in making selections. It is a large place with a high ceiling, subdued lighting, music in the background, bench seating along most walls, small bare wood tables, windows to the street, brick walls, sheer curtains dividing portions of the room and decorations of small mirrors on the walls. The crowd was made up of various age groups but skewed toward the younger side. The food was mixed, with some being very good but others trying too hard. If you want this style of cuisine, it’s the place to go.
Baba Ganoush with pickled cauliflower and Za’atar Garlic Knot are ordered separately. The menu has a number of dips and then you can pick your bread of choice to go with it. The Baba Ganoush was well seasoned and tasty that was great with the garlicky bread. The server suggested the combination and it was right on. Good versions of the dishes, easy to split and excellent together.
Sweet Harissa Chicken Wings with dried lime labne came as 4 flaps and 2 drumette pieces. The sticky excellent sauce was covered with sesame seeds and the moist pieces were good alone or also in the tasty sauce. Fun to eat, it was a wonderful take on the “Buffalo wing” craze. They were thoughtful enough to also send out a couple wet wipes to use after easy the messy food.
Braised lamb, Simit bun, pickles and herb mayo was nice shreds of lamb on a good piece of bread and accented with pickles. The pickles really accentuated the flavor but the lamb was on the tough, slightly dry side. The first 2 plates were much better but this was fine.
Duck breast, ajvar, mushroom Tabbouleh, and hot peppers was 2 boneless pieces of meat cooked nicely rare. This one had a terrific sauce and was absolutely full of flavor. Lots of things with the meat that shall remained unidentified due to my lack of note-taking.
Cauliflower with preserved lemon, buttermilk and lentils was suggested by our server. It also had tons of things mixed with it. Pomegranate seeds added crunch and the plump golden raisins added sweetness. Some pickled onion added contrast to the milky dressing. Lots of flavors and textures made this a fun one.
A special dessert was offered that evening with pistachio galette, raspberry and pistachio labna (cream cheese like), figs and a raspberry plum sauce. The labna had a bit on honey on it in addition to the chunks of pistachio. Most of the stuff was good but there were too many flavors competing to make it work for me.
House made walnut Baklava came in 2 pieces. It was sticky with tons of walnuts and honey. It was a very good version of the common dessert. While I liked it better than the special neither of the desserts took it over the top.