When the remove-the-outdoor-tables-and-chairs operation took place in Taksim in July, many thought that the nightlife in Taksim would soon be over. Even though many bars and restaurants did suffer, Taksim is still very much alive and bursting with Istanbulites out for a fun night in town.
A recent addition to the Taksim scene is Tektekçi. This tiny venue, always overflowing with fearless dancers who can see the bottom of several shot glasses in less than minutes, is Istanbul’s first shot bar to open in the lively Tomtom Mahallesi right across from Indigo.
Here, you’ll find a wide variety of interesting shot combinations, from the sweet to the sour, to the spicy to the sweet-and-sour. And then there is the straight up rakı, beer, whiskey shots. You won’t get anything in a bottle or a regular glass, but you’ll surely get them in regular-sized or humongous shot glasses - it all depends on where you want the night to go.
Some can’t make it to the next venue after Tektekçi, swearing to never to step foot inside again, only to go back there the next weekend for another night of shameless drinking.
Wobbling aside, Tektekçi is truly the place to be at the moment. Concert-goers as well as rakı-drinkers do their shots side by side with groups of soon-to-be-very-drunk people off to an endless night of barhopping in Taksim.
It has to be said, although the concept of Tektekçi is to warm up for a long night out, the music is so good that many end up spending the majority of their night at Tektekçi. If you like to dance to a mix of upbeat songs – anything from Adele and Lily Allen to the golden oldies pieces like “Let’s Twist Again” – you may have to cancel your post-Tektekçi plans.
Now - the logistics. There is no coat check but there are several overhead shelves and hooks under the bar where you can put your coats. The venue is very crowded and you may have to wait a while to get to your long-awaited shots, but the wait is definitely worth it. The sweet bartenders are more than helpful in helping you choose what to drink. The menu is quite comprehensive, which may make the decision process painful. But the menu is arranged for even the most wasted in the room: there are separate sections for sweet, sour, sweet-and-sour, spicy, and straight. The easiest option may be to order the tray where you get 10 or 20 shots at once to avoid waiting and to try as many delicious shots as possible. Beware that this technique requires much more caution - it is pretty much a one way street to hangover hell.
Tektekçi; Tomtom Mahallesi, Akarsu Sokak No. 2/1, Beyoğlu; P: 0533 774 74 60