WednesdayFiled under Reviews (Eats)
During our previous trips to Istanbul’s “Little Gaziantep” – where we enjoyed the special techniques of Turkey’s culinary nerve center at the excellent Hizmet Kardeşler – we were tempted by what lay across the street. It was an alluring sight scarcely seen in Istanbul: the simple yet scrumptious nohut dürüm. The wrap of chickpeas, parsley and spices nestled within a formidable section of tırnaklı ekmek flatbread is the specialty at Hamo’nun Yeri (Hamo’s Place). Run by a family with roots in the Gaziantep district of Nizip, the restaurant’s name comes from the family patriarch.
“He was a wonderful person, so when he passed away we decided to name our place after him,” said Tufan Gül, who runs the eatery alongside his brother Mehmet, uncle Ali and other assorted relatives, all of whom routinely pop in and out of the small kitchen.
Hamo never made it to Istanbul, but his son – Tufan and Mehmet’s father – left Nizip and migrated to Turkey’s largest city where he opened a shop in the city’s famous Egyptian Bazaar, selling spices imported from home. That shop has since closed, but the Gül brothers opened Hamo’nun Yeri in 2009 in the periphery Güngören district’s neighborhood of Köyiçi – what we like to think of as “Little Gaziantep” because of all the migrants from that area who have settled here. Ali arrived recently to work at the family restaurant after his cellular phone shop in Gaziantep went out of business.
Read the rest of the review at Culinary Backstreets.
All entries filed under Reviews (Eats)
no responses - Posted 08.14.15
The T1 tramway route passes by virtually all of Istanbul’s most well-known sights. Crossing the Galata Bridge and weaving through the old city, the T1 practically rubs up against the Hagia Sophia, Topkapı Palace, the Grand Bazaar and other famous attractions, ensuring that most foreign visitors to the city will ...continue
no responses - Posted 08.06.15
Don’t people just love to fight about food? Punch ups over which city makes the best pizza, brawls about what’s the right way to barbecue. Louis and Ella nearly called the whole thing off over the pronunciation of the word “tomato.” In this pugilistic spirit, we took our place at a ...continue
no responses - Posted 07.24.15
Standing behind the counter at his small bici bici shop in the Zeytinburnu district of Istanbul, Cuma Usta recalls the first time he headed up into the mountains with his uncles in search of wild ice, one of the key ingredients in this Turkish snow cone treat sold from street ...continue
no responses - Posted 07.16.15
Ali Bey, the owner of a cubby-sized restaurant in Küçük Pazarı called Kısmet, sounded a bit like Bubba Gump listing the items on his menu: “We've got chicken soup, fried chicken gizzards, shredded chicken breast, dark chicken meat too, chicken and rice, chicken with onions and peppers, and chicken breast ...continue
no responses - Posted 07.08.15
The roaring '20s: Flappers in the Pera Palas Hotel were dancing the can-can, Art Deco was all the rage, the Turkish Republic was born. Hope, progress and newness double-stepped to the beat of Kemal Atatürk’s drum. This was the backdrop to which two Istanbul bakers, Filip and Yorgi, opened a whimsical ...continue
no responses - Posted 06.29.15
Every year, for one month only, bakeries across Istanbul churn out round, flat, yeasty loaves of Ramazan pide bread. Before Muslims break their fast at sundown, they hurry to buy these addictively chewy pides, which are essential to the iftar meal here. Some bakeries rely on machines to shape the pide and stamp the traditional checkerboard ...continue
no responses - Posted 06.22.15
Think of Ramadan, which began in late June in many parts of the world, as a kind of monthlong biathlon that consists of an all-day race to beat back the hunger and thirst of fasting, followed by an all-night marathon of eating and drinking in order to fortify the body ...continue
no responses - Posted 06.17.15
Edirne has more meat to offer beyond the glistening liver that bears its name. Deniz Börek Salonu has crowned the top of Saraçlar Caddesi since 1986. Every morning, lines of salivating citizens hurry to work with crunchy poğaças or sit down to enjoy steaming heaps of stuffed pastry. While there are ...continue
no responses - Posted 06.09.15
For the past 24 years, Cemil Tuncay has wheeled his small metal cart to the biweekly produce pazar in Edirne. He sets up shop around noon, lighting coals under what can be described as massive, torpedo-shaped sausages. Kokoreç is a simple fast food made from bits of sheep leftover from butchering, ...continue
no responses - Posted 06.05.15
The only positive thing about the torturous annual visit we make to Istanbul’s main police station in order to renew our residence permit is the chance to drive through the low-rent Aksaray neighborhood.It's home to dozens of intriguing off-the-beaten-path restaurants, most of them opened by migrants from other parts of ...continue