Let me first start with I’m a terrible blogger lately… I know, I know! You can secretly nod your head, I do not mind. It seems as of late I edit photos to put up and then the universe eats up a few days. How does time fly so fast when you have a million things to get done? Today is the day though, I am putting up a few new posts as an apology for being a week since the last post. Hopefully all of you can forgive me. So to start things off, I want to introduce all of you Mediterranean food lovers to a restaurant located in Michigan City, Indiana. Vegans rejoice:
Turnip and Pickle is a Modern Mediterranean restaurant located in Michigan City, Indiana. Remember when we went shopping in this city and then took a walk on Lake Michigan? Well, this is when we went to this restaurant after all of our adventures. It’s located in an adorable old-fashioned American city street lined with twinkle lights. (Photo Above) The city is very small so there is plenty of parking lining the streets, free.
As the restaurant is a bit of an upper scale restaurant, think white linen tablecloths and napkins, there is waitstaff that will seat you upon entering. It’s a small restaurant but enough for a small party of ten or so can be entertained along with a few other small parties. I would suggest reservations if you have a party of more than 4. As for attire, I would not be as picky. There were diners wearing blue jeans but with a nice collared shirt. Nothing too posh here but I would not suggest shorts and a t-shirt as you might feel a bit out of place.
So on to the food! It’s best to always start off with the menu right? (2-sided)
It’s very dark in the restaurant for “ambiance”. I love ambiance, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes it is rather hard to read the menu in the dark. But do not fear I was able to snap a photo of the menu for all of you.
To start off each dining experience, the waiter explained homemade pickles are served to each and every diner. Hello! Yes and thank you! The pickles are strong but delicious! Genki Husband was not as excited about the super salty flavor but maybe it was because he was only allowed one. (Kidding)
There are a few normal options for vegans such as the hummus platter entree and falafels. The items were universally known Arabic dishes but with a slight twist from the chef. I believe the chef was said to be from Turkey? I could be wrong on that one but I believe that’s what our waiter told us. So back to the food, this was the hummus platter served with baba ganoush, original hummus, tomatoes, red peppers and cucumbers.
Of course the hummus platter was served with a basket of warmed up store bought pitas. These were actually a bit burnt and maybe even stale. Hopefully this was just the day we went though as it was nightfall by the time we arrived.
Of courses Genki Husband would not leave until he had a Vegan Falafel Wrap which comes disassembled in a bowl. These are Yemeni Style Falafels that contain speciality spices to this particular chef which are cardamom,coriander, chili and tahini. The chili made these a bit more spicy than normal so it was a new experience to us. As a personal preference we love Jordanian style falafels but that is mainly due to our good friends from there that taught us how to cook them. (Everyone has their own preferences though so don’t just go by ours.)
As you can see from the photos, the idea is basically a tapas style restaurant experience. When we entered the restaurant we weren’t sure what we were getting into as the website doesn’t explain too much to newbies. Our waiter stated the style was “family sharing” or something along those lines. In my mind I was referencing the idea of ‘Family Dining’ to the large portions served in Amish restaurants such as in Shipshewana, Indiana. This wasn’t the case but rather tapas, aka small portions served in multiple plates. Personally I love the idea of tapas at Korean or Japanese restaurants because it means a million different dishes to try but in Arabic restaurants this just isn’t the case. Basically it is a way to serve small amounts of food for a higher price. Again this is just a personal opinion and in no way does it degrade the quality of this restaurant. I love that the chef is introducing a small town like Michigan City to the wonders of the world. I applaud him/her for this achievement! But when a vegan girl that has just been shopping an entire day just wants to dine on delicious fat-filled Arabic food, she wants a good portion for the high price tag. (Plus I don’t want to share it with a hungry vegan husband… ha-ha)
If you are ever in the Michigan City, Indiana area (maybe to outlet shop!), I would suggest Pickle and Turnip. My suggestions would be to order separate dishes for each person (maybe a few per person). It is a bit pricier than other locations but the food is good quality and the waitstaff is very nice. It’s a good one-time off experience. Tell them Genki Kitty sent you!