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Reviews (Eats) - Category Archive

Oct 23
Friday

Grifin: Seafood Oasis

Filed under Reviews (Eats)

grifinEditor’s note: Due to a number of troubling reports, we can no longer recommend this restaurant. Though the view remains as fine as ever, it seems the kitchen is no longer holding up its end of the bargain. The good news is that Tarihi Karaköy Balıkçısı, located just downstairs from Grifin and open during the daytime, remains as good as ever.

In Karaköy’s Perşembe Pazarı, a historic commercial district on the shores of the Golden Horn, the dining scene is decidedly no-frills. Simple lunch spots thrive by day on the business of hungry and busy people buying and selling hardware – a meat-and-potatoes crowd. Any white tablecloth in these market streets is probably bound in twine and sold in bulk. Come nightfall, the streets are empty and the shops all locked up, not a hungry soul in sight. It seems even the streetlights in this part of town don’t bother to do their thing. Which makes the appearance of Grifin, a high-end seafood restaurant with an up-the-Bosphorus vibe and sweeping views, a baffling culinary mirage. Continue…

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All entries filed under Reviews (Eats)


Kosinitza: Trattoria à la Turca
no responses - Posted 10.20.09
Editor's note: This guest post was written by Kathryn Tomasetti and Tristan Rutherford, freelance travel journalists for The Guardian, The Independent and Time Out, among others. Their website can be found here. Kosinitza is located in the charming Bosphorus-side village of Kuzguncuk, a short bus ride north of Üsküdar. It’s a time-forgotten ...continue
Döner: Heavy Rotation
1 response - Posted 10.16.09
Editor’s note: This guest post was written by Atilla Kapar, author of the blog Türkiye ve Dünyadan Lezzetler (“Good Tastes from Turkey and the World”) and a Turkish food enthusiast who, as he describes it, “reviews lesser-known restaurants in Istanbul that offer great-tasting food.” Atilla is a graduate of Bosphorus University ...continue
Çiğ Köfte: The Raw Deal
no responses - Posted 10.12.09
It may not quite be up there with Japan’s fugu, blowfish meat that if prepared incorrectly can lead to death, but Turkey’s çiğ köfte is one of those foods that carries with it a certain frisson of danger. Literally translated as “raw meatballs,” the dish is made out of uncooked ...continue
Vefa Boza: Strange Brew
3 responses - Posted 10.07.09
After our first taste, we were not quite ready to sing the praises of boza, a thick, almost pudding-like drink made from fermented millet. But the experience stuck with us. What is that flavor? Something like cross between Russian kvass (a fermented drink made from rye bread) and applesauce may ...continue
Sakarya Tatlıcısı: Just Dessert
6 responses - Posted 09.29.09
The arrival of fall usually finds us heading instinctively, like a salmon swimming towards its ancestral headwaters, to Beyoğlu’s Balık Pazarı, the neighborhood’s old fish market. Autumn is quince season in Turkey and that means the appearance – for a limited time only – of one of our favorite desserts, ...continue
Güngör Büfe: Sultan of Sandwich
1 response - Posted 09.25.09
The büfe is a prominent part of the Istanbul streetscape, playing a vital role in the daily life of the city. These are corner stores where you can get a can of beer, a single cigarette, a lotto ticket and, often, a panini-like grilled cheese sandwich. At most büfes, food ...continue
Şehzade Erzurum Cağ Kebabı: Gaucho Kebab Rides Again
13 responses - Posted 09.21.09
We were alarmed to recently discover that one of our favorite spots, Erzurum Cağ Kebapçısı in Karaköy, had closed down. Turns out the owner returned to his former job – being an electrician. Istanbul has plenty of kebab joints, but places serving cağ are sadly hard to find. Originating in the ...continue
Mutfak Dili: Tradesmen’s Paradise
1 response - Posted 09.18.09
Istanbul Eats lunch hunting tip #1: Wander into one of Istanbul’s numerous districts of small commerce and find yourself on a small street with a shoe cobbler, a knife sharpener and hardware shops. #2: Enter one of these shops, preferably one where two old men are sitting at the counter looking at the ...continue
Gönül Abla: Mighty Mantı
1 response - Posted 09.04.09
The mini dumpling mantı, a dish that traces its roots to the mobile kitchens of nomadic Turkic tribes in Central Asia, is often referred to as “Turkish ravioli.” But could the Turks have beaten the Italians to the punch? Is it ravioli that should actually be called “Italian mantı?” We’ll never ...continue
Meşhur Unkapanı İMÇ Pilavcısı: The (Rice) Freaks Come Out at Night
4 responses - Posted 08.24.09
One recent late night, zipping down a busy Istanbul thoroughfare in a taxi on our way home from the airport, we passed by an intriguing scene. Huddled around a brightly lit food cart was a large group of men stuffing their faces in a kind of zombie-like frenzy. It almost ...continue

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