Best Restaurants in Istanbul
Istanbul not only bridges the cultural and geographical gap
between Europe and Asia, but also blends its culinary offerings.
Eating out in Istanbul restaurants gives diners a taste of the
splendid fusion that can be created by combining the traditional
cuisine of these two vast continents. Dining options abound in
Istanbul and if in doubt, head for the Sultanahmet area which has
the most restaurants. Traditional Turkish fare such as turbot with
saffron and raspberry, or cinnamon flavoured chicken kebabs, can be
enjoyed at restaurants in the Edirnekapi and Ortak?¶y areas, while
the best seafood is in Kanl??ca. Istanbul restaurants serving a
fusion of Turkish, Mediterranean and Asian cuisine are found in
Beyoglu and Sisli, while Taksim and Ortak?¶y are home to some
excellent caf?©s. With so many restaurants in and around the city,
diners will find somewhere to eat any time of any day. Menu prices
are generally quite fair and essentially you get what you pay for!
A tip of at least 10% is customary. At most Istanbul restaurants,
reservations are either required or strongly recommended.
Saf cuisine can be enjoyed at Hayal Kahvesi in Club Sporium
Akatlar, perfect for a light meal after a good workout or an
afternoon by the pool. The menu offers fresh organic food such as a
'Taco Trio' with Mexican p??t?©, guacamole, salsa and sour cream.
Open daily for breakfast, lunch and supper, reservations
Address: Club Sporium (Mayadrom Arkas??), Cumhuriyet Cad. 4/8
Located on the top two floors of the 18 storey Marmara Pera
Hotel, this gourmet restaurant offers a glorious 360Â? vista of the
lights of Old Town. Chef and owner Mehmet G??rs prepares Turkish and
Scandinavian meals such as saut?©ed scallops with vegetable risotto,
and ragu beef cheeks with porcini mushroom soup. An absolute
favourite is the lamb escargot for mains, followed by a tachio and
tahini ice-cream dessert. Reservations essential.
Address: Mesrutyiyet Cad. 167, Tepebasi
The Feriye Lokantasi is a multi-purpose venue with its own bar,
caf?©, conference hall and two separate seasonal venues for the one
restaurant. The best way to enjoy this facility is on the outdoor
terrace on a balmy summer evening. The menu, like the venue, is
flexible and based on what is seasonal, offering Turkish cuisine
cooked in the ottoman tradition. The menu offers delicious meals
such as grilled turbot, with saffron and courgette balls, in
raspberry puree. Open daily for lunch and dinner, reservations
Address: ????ra?°an Cad. 40 Ortak?¶y
The K?¶rfez lies nestled in a cove on the Asian side of the
Bosphorus Straight, with tables set on a deck right over the water
and a view of the bridge. K?¶rfez is often purported to be the best
seafood restaurant in Istanbul; start the meal with Turkish
vegetable starters or from a selection of seafood appetisers. Fish
meals are salted lightly and grilled to perfection. The restaurant
provides a ferry for customers coming to dine there from the
European side of the straight. Open daily except Mondays.
Address: K?¶rfez Cad. No:78 Kanl??ca
The House Caf?© (Ortak?¶y)
Boasting two terraces on the Ortak?¶y's waterfront, this trendy
restaurant's d?©cor blends beautifully with its seaside location.
While the menu features excellent seafood dishes, the pizza with
pears, honey and Roquefort is also sublime. Open daily,
Address: Salhane Sokak 1, Ortak?¶y
??intemani is both chic and laid-back, yet functions with all the
efficiency of its Ritz-Carlton host. Its varied menu features
cuisine with Mediterranean and Asian tastes, as well as local
favourites. Try the pistachio crusted lamb loin with saut?©ed
spinach and pestil sauce and keep space for the rice pudding with
homemade ice-cream. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Address: Ritz-Carlton, Askerocagi Cad. 15, Sisli
Set in a 19th century mansion overlooking the Golden Horn,
Asitane (one of Istanbul's Ottoman Empire names) serves authentic
Ottoman cuisine, featuring Central Asian, Anatolian, Middle Eastern
and Balkan influences and 500 year-old recipes. Veal in apple sauce
and cinnamon flavoured chicken kebabs are just two of the delicious
menu options. Open daily for lunch and dinner, and brunch on
Sundays. Reservations recommended.
Address: Kariye Camii Sokak 6, Edirnekapi
Cezayir serves Turkish cuisine with an international influence;
Indian spices are used in a Turkish samosa, and other menu
favourites include the salmon carpaccio and the 'b?¶rek' grilled
spinach and cheese pastry. With wicker chairs and pale yellow
walls, the mood in this restaurant is very calm and relaxed. Open
daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Reservations essential.
Address: Hayriye Cad. 16, Beyoglu
An aptly named restaurant, 360 is situated on a rooftop terrace
and has beautiful views and a sleek concrete and glass design. The
menu offers fusion cuisine featuring Turkish, Mediterranean and
Oriental ingredients. Signature dishes include the '360 Alternative
pizza' and their 'Death by Chocolate' is phenomenal! Open for lunch
and dinner Monday to Friday, and dinner only on weekends.
Address: Misir Apartmani K8, 311 Istikal Caddesi, Beyoglu
This New York-style caf?© has excellent views of the bustling
Taksim Square, as well as a stunning summer terrace to enjoy. While
the menu offers everything from Mexican to traditional Turkish
cuisine, the caf?© is renown for its fantastic coffee and cake
selection. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Reservations
Address: Taxim Hill Hotel, S??raselviler Caddesi 5, Taksim
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