Hidden away, inside an unassuming strip center in west Houston, is the Empire Turkish Grill. Open since 2002, the venerable restaurant is a staple among Memorial-area residents with well-priced, delicious fare in a serene and cozy space.
The interior is subdued, with peach-colored walls, white-table-cloths and a handful of Turkish artifacts dotting the dining room. Depending on the time of day, the restaurant crowd will vary from the professional set, squeezing in a mid-day lunch meeting, to families giving their kitchen a night off.
Among Empire’s well-prepared offerings are a mix of fresh salads, soups, perfectly-prepared kebabs and cold appetizers like the spicy, tomato-and-vegetable Ezme, stuffed grape leaves and hummus. As guests wait patiently for their tender, filet mignon-kebabs and lamb-and-rice stuffed cabbage rolls to arrive, they can enjoy a basket of freshly-baked bread—a welcomed pre-meal distraction.
Empire is open for lunch and dinner daily.