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Istanbul Travel Guide

Bitter Ending for an Istanbul Sweets Shop

Posted: Dec. 20th, 2012  |  By Michael Pearse
CulinaryBackstreets.com

Inci was a historic establishment in Istanbul and remained one of the few non-Muslim operated businesses that survived the dark times of Istanbul when immigrants were not very welcome. The building will be renovated into a shopping mall and the sweet shop will be forgotten.


In the end, history, nostalgia and Istanbulites love for cream puffs covered in goopy chocolate sauce were not enough to stand up to the forces of development that have been rapidly changing the face of Turkey's largest city. This week, after a drawn out legal battle, the classic and well-loved sweets shop Inci -- which has long claimed to be the birthplace of the profiterole -- was finally shut down and evicted from the historic building it was housed in, which is set to be "restored" and turned into a shopping mall.

The 70-year-old Inci was most likely not the place where the profiterole was invented and probably didn't even have Istanbul's best version of the dish, but the old-school spot was nonetheless an institution, a culinary touchstone for tourists and locals alike and one of the last operating links to an older Istanbul that's quickly disappearing. On the Culinary Backstreets website, Ansel Mullins offers this eulogy for Inci:

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