LATEST REVIEW

Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

After decades of following Western trends, Istanbul is finally looking east for its snacks. Originating from China, a soft steamed bun known as bao has quickly become one of Istanbul’s foodie favorites. Suitable for both vegetarians and meat lovers, bao presents endless creative filling...

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Discover Istanbul’s gourmet boutiques, speciality shops, and Turkish designers. Learn about Grand Bazaar & Spice Bazaar, and the city’s largest shopping malls.

Craving a sugar-rush but don't necessarily care for the baklava crowds of Güllüoğlu? Take a trip to Kadıköy and ask a local for Şekerci Cafer Erol. It's not a hard place to miss, as it is located in the crowded Kadıköy square not far from the ferry docks, and as it is oftentimes filled with eager...

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Your ultimate guide to finding and tasting the flavors of Istanbul & Turkey. Learn more about seasonal and local food.

Aşure is a delightful yet odd Turkish sweet, and perhaps difficult for those unfamiliar with the dessert to understand. It fully represents the bounty of nature, made of boiled wheat grains plus a variety of pulses like chickpeas and beans, dried fruits like raisins, sultanas, currants, apricots,...

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Your ultimate guide to finding and tasting the flavors of Istanbul & Turkey. Learn more about seasonal and local food.

As a fertile land with abundant agriculture, Turkey is the third-largest country for pistachio production. These green gems are gathered in the late summer months right before they reach their full blossom, when they are higher in iron and lower in fat. Fortunately for pistachio lovers, there is no...

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Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

Presenting a lifestyle for over 80 years, Vakko has long been more than only fashion. It has added a new facet to that lifestyle, bringing the elegance of the French pastry experience to Istanbul in the form of Vakko Patisserie Petit Four at the Akmerkez Shopping Center in a chic extension of this...

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Your ultimate guide to finding and tasting the flavors of Istanbul & Turkey. Learn more about seasonal and local food.

Food fermentation is a culinary trend around the world, and for good reason. In certain foods, the process of converting carbohydrates and sugars can not only create bacteria-boosting agents but also release small amounts of alcohol. Boza and şıra, fermented drinks quite common in the Ottoman...

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Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

Though a small hole-in-the-wall type of place on Akaretler's main street, B.BLOK is already a minor legend around the neighborhood, with one item on the menu you would not want to miss for the world: their creamy cheesecake. With vanilla notes immersed in the dessert’s smooth texture, and the ever...

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Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

It might be difficult to keep track of new places at the ever-changing Kılıç Ali Paşa Mescidi Sokak, but Frenk Karaköy, despite its petite size, caught our attention with its elegant decor. This venue has a limited seating area, as only about half a dozen little tables are spread out between the...

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Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

The new face of Arnavutköy’s nightlife, Halet-i Ruhiye, has become one of the most crowded spots in the neighborhood within just a few days of its opening, just like it was the case with its owner’s previous project, Efendi. Kıvanç Kasar’s new bar boasts a creative cocktail menu, which is the...

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Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

Od + un , fire and flour, make Odun Pizza, a newly opened restaurant in Reşitpaşa with a concept so simple and dishes so tasty you will undoubtedly leave satisfied and happy. The pizza dough, which is fermented for two days and then baked at 400 degrees in a wood-fired oven, is prepared in a unique...

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Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

While today restaurants servicing light and healthy dishes alongside green smoothies and detox juices are in trend, sometimes we still need a hearty, freshly cooked burger. One of the newest spots in Ortaköy, Lara’s Gourmet Burgers, is looking to fill this role. The restaurant was created by...

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Your ultimate guide to finding and tasting the flavors of Istanbul & Turkey. Learn more about seasonal and local food.

It is already past 9am by the time The Guide Istanbul meets Emre Şen, executive chef of Casa Lavanda , and Jilber Barutçiyan, our guide for the morning. They have already finished their breakfast of börek at the historical Bilice Börekçisi at the entrance of Bahçeköy, and are ready to take a trip...

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Your ultimate guide to finding and tasting the flavors of Istanbul & Turkey. Learn more about seasonal and local food.

Jujubes, hünnap in Turkish, are more common in Turkey than one might think, and they deserve more attention given their health benefits, pleasant taste, and versatile nature. This fruit, slightly bigger than an olive, is reddish brown when ripe, with a light green flesh that is soft in texture. It...

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Discover the best restaurants in Istanbul, eat with top chefs, and taste local food by learning more about Turkish cuisine and street foods.

The name for MSA’s Restaurant is no coincidence. Instead of fashionable ambiguity describing the place's conceptual secrets, one comes across the “still in training” statement on several occasions. However, the place, a training field for culinary students who aspire to create and develop other...

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District

Features

Craving a sugar-rush but don't necessarily care for the baklava crowds of Güllüoğlu? Take a trip to Kadıköy and ask a local for Şekerci Cafer Erol. It's not a hard place to miss, as it is located in the crowded Kadıköy square not far from the ferry docks, and as it is oftentimes filled with eager...

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Pizza Locale, Akaretler - photo by Merve Göral

Hailing from İzmir, the newly opened Pizza Locale is a living proof that one more Italian eatery is never one too many. The casual joint offers classic Italian delicacies side by side with their Turkish interpretations, such as Tire sucuk pizza . Gourmets will appreciate the fact that the...

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Çam Sut Mangal Restaurant

Located just across a busy intersection from another authentic Korean restaurant, Seorabeol, Çam Sut Mangal Restaurant’s unassuming facade hides a big personality that starts with the banchan . Many say a Korean restaurant can be judged solely on the quality of these small seasonal appetizers that...

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A Wai Lou - photo by Merve Göral

It might be the deep frying, a pinch of sugar added to almost every dish, or the balanced carb-protein ratio that make Chinese food the unquestionable king of comfort food. However, if you like to step outside your comfort zone every now and then and try something different, head to A Wai Lou, a...

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The city’s gentrifying neighborhood of Reşitpaşa is slowly evolving, and Mittag is one of the coolest restaurants to emerge so far. After working at one of Istanbul’s most highly-lauded restaurants, Mikla, MSA-alumni Fatma Yıldırım decided to open up her own place and that’s how Mittag arrived on...

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Avlu Yeniköy

Istanbul has seen many neighborhoods become the trendy spot one for time. Asmalımescit was the place to go for drinks, then it handed that status off to Karaköy. Now, Arnavutkoy is the hip area to go, but could Yeniköy be next? If places like Avlu populate the streets of this waterfront...

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Martinez Istanbul, photo by Merve Göral

As central as it can be, located inside Akmerkez, Martinez Istanbul is far from your everyday shopping mall eatery. The sleek restaurant is another venture by UKA Life group, the same name behind Hudson in Arnavutköy. Although there are some resemblances in its interior and on the menu, Martinez...

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Must, Nişantaşı

The sign out front reading “There MUST be some cool people here” pretty much sums up the vibe at Must Nişantaşı. Done up like a slick Manhattan lounge with a predilection for French extravagance, this drinking and dining spot is designed with you and your well-coiffed friends in mind. The investors...

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8 Fingers, Buddha Bowl Breakfast

One of the joys of wandering through Beyoğlu is the wealth of little shops and cafes tucked into unexpected corners. Located just opposite an Ottoman fountain on Kazancı Yokuşu, the bite-sized 8 Fingers Coffee & Street Food Bar is one of these discoveries. As the name suggests, this venue is...

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Kase No. 16, Teşvikiye - photo by Merve Göral

Teşvikiye is home to a slew of hip restaurants and Kase No. 16 is no exception. This compact, charming spot is built around a bowl concept (hence the name, kase ). Embellished with large and small, colorful bowls, the champagne colored wall catches your attention as soon as you enter from the glass...

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Tamirane, Maslak - photo by Merve Göral

Set inside the grounds of UNIQ Istanbul, Tamirane is a familiar name for Istanbulites from its previous location at Santral Istanbul. The name of the restaurant translates as repair shop and relevantly the venue aims to restore its customers with good food and music. Whether you’re at UNIQ for an...

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Socrates Bistro, Teşvikiye - photo by Merve Göral

Melding food you might find at a sports bar with an elevated cocktail concept, Socrates Bistro brings together two worlds and gives them both heft. Start the evening sipping an powerful Aqua Vitae, a mingling of infused whiskey, elderflower and barrel-aged bitters, or a pretty Meine, made of...

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Dehli Darbar

Indian cuisine varies significantly from province to province and yet restaurants tend to lump it into a “greatest hits” hodge podge. Not so at Delhi Darbar. The kitchen here is full of cooks intent on recreating their native Punjabi cuisine. This rich culinary region straddles northern India and...

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Long Bar, Raffles Istanbul - photo by Merve Göral

Offering the exact atmosphere needed for a night of fun with friends, Long Bar gets its name from the iconic bar of Raffles Hotel in Singapore, where once Hemingway and Hitchcock stayed. The sleek interiors of the spacious bar create a modern, luxurious setting. Sit in the armchairs in front of the...

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BunCo, Teşvikiye

SushiCo group has opened a spot in Teşvikiye called BunCo, offering a short menu of stuffed steamed buns. Originally a tradition found in Chinese cuisine, they are now officially a global mini-sandwich trend - and what diners find at Bunco are far from the original Asian iteration. However, they’ll...

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Kiss the Frog, Rumelihisarı - photo by Merve Göral

In Istanbul, if a restaurant can make it through an entire season of operations, chances are it’s here to stay. We believe this is the case with Rumeli Hisarı’s Kiss the Frog. After a dose of initial scepticism following its opening more than a year ago, we decided to give it a try when it could no...

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Pattis, Kadıköy

Not everyone is an early riser, but most people want a decent breakfast for their first meal of the day – and some could do breakfast any time of day. Pattis welcomes all with its rich menu. A hashtag explains it all, #breakfasteverymeal. The spot is far from the crowds, yet quite centrally located...

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Union Pacific, Galata

From the outside, it looks like many of the other slick cafes that dot the area. But Union Pacific is making waves in Galata. Inside the hip space, you’ll find something akin to an F&B creative space. On the walls are a range of Asian ingredients like chili sauces and noodles. In the racks are...

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Havan'dan by Beff Gourmet

Reşitpaşa is gaining popularity with a rash of recent new openings and Havan’dan by Beff Gourmet is the latest addition to the excitement. Decorated with bright colors and striking features like a chandelier made of kitchen whisks, this distinctive, lovely eatery is in contrast with the rest of the...

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Yeniköy Lokantası

Combining homey food and a cozy atmosphere, Yeniköy Lokantası has recently opened as a small eatery on the second floor of a building behind Yeniköy Port. Ditch the menu and ask for the daily zeytinyağlı (olive oil) dishes. Produce comes from the Aegean region, is picked in season and preserved for...

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