In a city like Istanbul, there is an endless array of possibilities for dining out. It can be difficult to find a restaurant that offers a perfect combination of high-quality dishes, creative flavor, and a warm atmosphere, but there are indeed a number of places that serve these up on their menus. Below, you can find a list of our top cozy chef restaurants in the city, where the well-trained hands of a talented chef are sure to deliver amazing food, sustenance, and subsequent visits.
Chef İnanç Baykar knows that dining out should be about quality and his menu at Aman da Bravo is a celebration of fresh, seasonal ingredients—short enough that a group of four could easily have it all in one go, yet perfectly balanced to ensure surprises on the palate each time you visit.
Antica Locanda is a place we frequent with pleasure for two reasons: the restaurant’s beautiful location and chef Gian Carlo Talerico’s exquisite menu. All occasions—from date nights to family gatherings to friendly get-togethers—turn into festive celebrations thanks to the owners’ attention to detail and the passion reflected in every dish.
An Istanbul classic, Şemsa Denizsel’s Kantin has not lost its original ambiance despite moving locations last year and has maintained its quality for over 15 years. This favorite offers everything we love and appreciate in dining out: original deliciousness in a effortless setting.
A daytime eatery with daily specials, Mittag is one of those places we all wish there were more of. Fatma Yıldırım goes above and beyond to make your late breakfast and lunch exciting, changing the courses according to the seasonal availability of the produce.
Nicole is definitely the fanciest venue on our list, but with only a handful of tables it creates a memorable setting for classy, intimate gatherings. Aylin Yazıcıoğlu’s creative dishes are a legend around town, ensuring both comfort and surprise on the same plate.
After last year’s move from Akaretler to Kuruçeşme, İsmet Saz’s TOI is cosier than ever. The menu changes every six weeks so always try something new but never neglect the classics, such as Saz's famous beef Wellington.
One of the best contemporary eateries in Beyoğlu, Yeni Lokanta could easily become your favorite dining spot during the colder months. Browse through Civan Er’s selection of dishes to share as moody lighting brings out the best of the conversation.