Category Archives: 4 stars

Atika

4 ****

The terrace of this Atika ( Şimşirci Sok. No: 6 D:1, Cihangir)  is its main selling point. Which sounds like damning with faint praise, but it’s such a feature of the place that it should be on the menu. A refurbished ex-consulate, the perfect location hiding at the back of the street facing building is a sophisticatedly opulent setting to the most gorgeous backdrop in Cihangir. Continue reading

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White Mill

4 ****

From the street, White Mill looks Continue reading

Ranchero – Turk Mex

4 ****

The product of the owner’s Mexican and Turkish parents’ dream, Ranchero aims to bring home-made Mexican cuisine to Istanbul.  It might have taken them since 1977 to realize their goal but if most of that time went into planning the extensive menu, it was worth the wait. Continue reading

Crepe & Fondue

4 ****

The urge to comfort eat must come from a time when our ancestors hibernated and stuffed themselves beforehand to provide that extra layer of fat for surviving until spring.  What better way to satisfy such a primitive need than vats of melted cheese and melted chocolate? I was already sold on this basic premise alone but learnt there is much more to fondue at this small, friendly restaurant. Continue reading

Otantik – How it’s done in Anatolia

4 ****

For some reason I’ve managed never to notice Otantik, despite it’s prominent Istiklal position (no. 170) and unsubtle decor.  Water features and faux foliage abound but, although I am sure a more ambience discerning customer would find it tacky, I thought it was charming.  Even the woman sitting fully costumed by her gözleme (Turkish pancake) stone was fine by me – it means hot, fresh gözleme whatever cool points it loses.  But, I had been away for a few weeks so maybe my Istanbul snobbery gauge needed resetting. Continue reading

Meyhanes – Mahzen, Çiçek Pasajı

4 ****

Imagine your living room but packed with people clapping along to folk music, tray after tray of food being brought to your table and an endless supply of raki. The essence of a good meyhane is making the diner feel totally at home but with the atmosphere cranked up to full power. Continue reading

Changa – Worth the hype?

4 ****

Changa (Siraselviler 87/1) is one of the restaurants you hear about when you first arrive in expat Istanbul, assume is open only toVIPs and the very rich and resolve to go when that next paycheck comes in or someone in Istanbul’s elite has chosen you from the plebs and invites you to dinner. Continue reading