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Feb 22
The Best Little Fish House in Galata Gets a Bit Bigger

Furreyya -- photo by Yigal Schleifer
Good news for those who have tried to eat at Furreyya Galata Balikcisi, the winning fish house near the Galata tower, only to find the tiny place full: the restaurant has recently remodeled, doubling its number of tables. Bad news for those who have tried to eat at Furreyya, only to find the tiny place full: the restaurant is bigger, but it still only has five tables and seven bar stools.

Still, we’re looking forward to grabbing a meal at the new-and-improved Furreyya, which has become one of our absolute favorite places in town. Besides expanding the place, the owners have put in a new kitchen and have given the restaurant a spiffing up, with a new wooden façade and a completely remodeled interior. The menu remains the same, for now, although one of the cooks told us some new items might be in the works (Ismael, one of the owners, even promised a wine menu at one point, but the presence of a mosque across the street might get in the way of that).

For those not familiar with Furreyya, here’s a bit from our original review of the place:

Located on a busy corner only a stone’s throw from the 13th-century Galata Tower, the restaurant offers a great (and affordable) alternative to eating at one of Istanbul’s fancier fish restaurants, where often you pay too much buck for the bang. Fürreyya’s menu is basic, the bulk of it devoted to whole fish either grilled over hardwood coals or fried in a light dusting of flour. The exceptionally fresh fish, a selection of whatever is in season in the waters around Istanbul and other parts of Turkey, is found in a small refrigerated display case outside the restaurant.

But the menu also holds some very rewarding surprises. Balık koftesi are delicious fish cakes cooked over the charcoal grill and served with a squeeze of homemade basil aioli. On occasion, Fürreyya serves up its tasty take on mantı, tortellini-like miniature pockets of dough that are usually filled with ground meat but here are made with fish. The highlight of the menu, though, may be its most humble offering: the balık durum, a tortilla-like wrap filled with grilled fish and caramelized onions. At 6 lira for a durum, it’s one of Istanbul’s best and tastiest deals.

Address: Serdar-i Ekrem Sok. 2, Beyoglu (Kuledibi)
Telephone: 212-252-4853

(photo by Yigal Schleifer)

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5 Responses to “ The Best Little Fish House in Galata Gets a Bit Bigger ”
  1. TJ Hanrahan

    Feb 25, 2010

    thumbs down on the interior decoration. The look before the renovation- bright, clean and tiny- was much cooler. now they’ve got ugly wallpaper. luckily the food is still ^#$&ing awesome!

  2. Thank you very much for advice, I was at Furreyya a couple of days ago. The food was incredibly delicious!

  3. Ted & Muriël

    Mar 31, 2011

    We were there last week. The fish was great and the service very good.

  4. I know people who go to this place all the time, even taking out, so we gave it a try. Although the food was good we were not really pleased.

    The service wasn’t that good, and the levrek durum was really small. It really was not anything more than an appetizer. But everything tasted good, no problems in that section.

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