Discovering the Top Restaurants in Istanbul
Savoring Istanbul: A Comprehensive Guide to the City's Best Restaurants
Few places on earth capture the imagination quite like Istanbul. Situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, this bustling metropolis melds the grandeur of ancient sites with the vibrancy of modern life in a seamless symphony of sights, sounds, and flavors. A true embodiment of this blending of old and new, East and West, is the city's gastronomic landscape—an enticing fusion of traditional recipes and innovative culinary artistry.
Welcome to our meticulously curated guide to the best restaurants in Istanbul. This is your essential companion as you explore the aromatic world of Istanbul's diverse cuisine, teeming with succulent grilled meats, fresh seafood, heavenly pastries, and dishes lovingly steeped in aromatic spices. We highlight establishments that not only serve mouth-watering dishes, but also perfectly encapsulate the soul and spirit of this remarkable city. Whether you're a seasoned food connoisseur keen on diving into Istanbul's rich culinary repertoire, or simply a visitor seeking standout dining experiences, our guide is designed to lead you right to the heart of the city's gastronomic wonders. Here, every meal is not just a feast for the palate, but a narrative of Istanbul's fascinating journey through time. In this guide, we serve up an array of options to cater to all tastes and expectations—from iconic establishments that have stood the test of time, to innovative newcomers that are redefining the culinary scene. Delve into our top picks for the best Bosphorus-view restaurants, must-visit Taksim eateries, kebab hotspots, and sought-after seafood havens.
Having provided airport transfer and private car services to thousands of tourists visiting Istanbul, we have often been asked for recommendations on what and where to eat in the city. We know that whether you are hunting for the best local dishes, kebab, fish, or Italian food, the vast number of options can be overwhelming. So, we have compiled our reviews of the world's best restaurants in Istanbul for 2023, including gems overlooking the Bosphorus, enchanting garden restaurants, popular favorites, and striking Istanbul terrace bars. So buckle up and get ready for a captivating culinary journey through Istanbul—the city where every dish tells a story. Enjoy the voyage!
Best Sea View İstanbul Restaurants
Best Fine Dining Restaurants in Istanbul
Most of us make great efforts to immortalize special moments, and a quality meal in a luxurious Istanbul restaurant will be good for all of us! Istanbul is a city full of unique restaurants against the Bosphorus for an unforgettable fine dining restaurant experience. We've listed some of the best luxury restaurants for the ultimate fine dining experience.
Fine Dining: the way of delicious food with artistic service in a perfect atmosphere restaurants
Murver restaurant has an incredibly good kitchen, which provides exquisite views of Istanbul, and creates a warm and lively atmosphere with its constant fire on the Novotel's terrace in Karakoy. The menu includes kebabs on an open-fire grill and wood-fired delicacies. After being cooked in the oven, the calamari served on the grill is served with roasted Aegean herbs, and the meat remaining on the grill is cooked slowly on wood ash. In short, everything is cooked on a wood fire. Murver Restaurant owner Yılmaz Öztürk, known for his Mancar and L'Escargot restaurants in Alacatı, plans the menu under the supervision of Mikla's chief Mehmet Gurs.
Mikla Restaurant is located on the top floor of The Marmara Pera Hotel and has been working under the management of Mehmet Gurs since 2005 a unique place where the simplicity and cooking methods of Scandinavian cuisine and Turkish cuisine blend with the traditional tastes. Mikla, which is a contemporary Istanbul restaurant, reflects its own style with carefully selected ingredients from every corner of Anatolia with the concept of 'New Anatolian Cuisine' created in 2012. Wine on the menu; There is diversity from France to Chile, from Spain to
Vogue Restaurant, opened in 1997 on the terrace floor of the BJK Plaza in Akaretler, Vogue serves international cuisine with Bosphorus views. Vogue Restaurant has a simple, elegant, and comfortable atmosphere, offering many unique tastes, from sea bass to baked lamb shanks. The Vogue Restaurant offers a wide range of dishes, from Thai fish to artichoke tortellini and you can taste Japanese delicacies from the sushi menu. Vogue Restaurant with Bosphorus View in Beşiktaş-Akaretler
Spago İstanbul Restaurant
Spago Istanbul restaurant, one of the pioneers of the farm-to-table movement, 2-Michelin-starred, world-famous chef Wolfgang Puck is in Istanbul with the iconic restaurant of Beverly Hills. Spago's first international restaurant outside the United States, Spago Istanbul, is located in St. Regis and provides service on the hotel's magnificent terrace. Recently, the number of fine dining restaurants in Istanbul has been increasing rapidly, and Spago is a "fine dining" restaurant that is included in the list of best restaurants in Istanbul.
16 Roofs Restaurant
Attracting attention with its modern and stylish designs on the terrace of the Swiss Hotel, 16 Roofs is one of the places that draw attention. Here you can get a pleasant service accompanied by the Bosphorus view. One of the things that makes the place interesting is that it has a separate section for up to 12 people.
Zuma (Best Sushi Restaurant)
Zuma Restaurant (the Best Sushi and Japanese restaurant) famous in London, opened in Ortakoy in 2008; now serves in İstinye Park with its extraordinary decoration. Zuma Restaurant, which has a branch in Hong Kong and has become a worldwide brand, offers real Japanese delicacies in the traditional Izakaya style. Decoration products and even plates come from Japan and have many options including seafood, meat dishes, meat grills, and of course Zuma specialties, sushi, vegetables, soup, and rice. Zuma prepared menus for lunch and has a welcoming atmosphere with a minimalist style. Zuma Restaurant (Istinye Park) is one of the best Istanbul restaurants
Culinary Treasures of Istanbul: Unraveling the City's Best Eateries
Dining Between Continents: The Best of Istanbul's Cuisine
Istanbul is a historical and touristic city surrounded by sea on three sides, the Bosphorus separating the continents of Asia and Europe. What could be better than enjoying a delicious meal with a sea view in this unique city? The best restaurants in Istanbul with a sea view:
Park Fora Restaurant
It brings together all the tastes of the sea and fish with its guests in Kuruçeşme, Istanbul, on the European side, where blue and green meet, with a magnificent Bosphorus view. Park Fora Fish and Seafood Restaurant, which comes to mind first when it comes to fish in the Bosphorus, seasonal fish, and legendary fish, continues to transform the words Bosporus and fish into taste with its 40 years of experience. Why is seasonal fish consumption important for Park Fora Fish and Seafood Restaurant? Fish should be consumed in the right season Although the flavors of the fish vary according to their species, which fish is eaten in which month is also extremely important in terms of its taste.
Ajia Restaurant, located within Ahmet Rasim Pasha Mansion, has been serving in Kanlica since 2004. The menu, prepared by Chef İzzet Ayva and his team, offers the tastes of Mediterranean and World cuisine accompanied by the view of Kanlıca Bosphorus. Ajia Restaurant bar, which was awarded the “Five Star Diamond award'' given by the American Academy of Hospital Services, is open until late at night. You can also choose Ajia Restaurant for breakfast or brunch. Ajia provides private transportation by sea every day except Monday. Ajia is located in such a great location that one of the best Istanbul restaurants can be found, even with a magnificent view.
Mavi Balık Restaurant
The restaurant, which was put into service in 1995 with the name of Mavi Yeşil, continues to serve under the name of "Mavi Balık" by enriching the world of taste. You can make it unforgettable with Mavi Balık's magnificent tastes and service concept for both private and business meals in the lounge and terrace, which integrates with the panoramic view of the Bosphorus. A restaurant where you can eat fish from the mouth with relatively better service and more affordable prices. Seafood and delicious flavors that come to life in the skillful hands of master chefs are prepared with the freshest ingredients and in the most hygienic conditions, every hour of the day.
Sunset Grill & Bar and Restaurant
Sunset Grill & Bar offers Bosphorus views, it's been in Ulus Park since 1994. Sunset is the most popular restaurant in Istanbul. Sunset Grill Bar is one of the best ''Fine-Dining” restaurants. The menu, which has been created with the flavors of World Cuisine, has every kind of taste with various tastes added to the menu. Sushi Bar has been offering customers the best Japanese flavors for 10 years. And what distinguishes Sunset from other restaurants is the bar section inside. Dozens of Sunset Grill bars in a pleasant atmosphere
Aya Fish Lounge
The new favorite of Sultanahmet restaurants is quickly coming to the fore among countless restaurants. Aya Fish Lounge in Aya Sultanahmet Hotel, as the name suggests, conquers hearts with its fish products. But it also decorates the tables with its excellent meat products and appetizers. In the heart of Sultanahmet, this restaurant with a view of Hagia Sophia will give you a natural home feeling.
Best Breakfast & Brunch Restaurants İstanbul
Best Kebab Restaurants İn İstanbul
Where To Eat The Best Turkish Kebab In Istanbul?
One of the indispensable tastes of traditional Turkish culture is Turkish kebabs. Popular kinds of kebab; Although Adana kebab and Urfa kebab are there are dozens of delicious variants such as hair pan (sac tava), cag kebab, testi kebab, eggplant kebab, tas kebab, shish kebab.
CZN Burak Kebap Restaurant/ Hatay Medeniyetler Kebab Restaurant
Hatay Medeniyetler Restaurant (#cznburak restaurant), which is famous for Hatay cuisine, offers a variety of kebabs and desserts, the restaurant provides the best kind of Anatolian dishes and appetizers to guests, taking advantage of Hatay's rich food culture for years. CZN Burak restaurant (#cznburak), an extraordinary and rich experience of the dazzling Hatay cuisine offers extraordinary service with its carefully selected staff. The rich table of 90% of the products supplied from the Hatay region is presented to you in the most privileged way
Çiya Sofrası (Kebap Restaurant)
Çiya Sofrası, which defines itself as the garden of lost cultures and forgotten flavors, can find almost every taste of Anatolian cuisine. The adventure of a place where you will definitely meet foreign tourists at any time of the day started in 1987 with just five tables in Kadıkoy. Ciya restaurant, which serves in the same place today, also has a separate lounge for kebab and lahmacun. The menu includes a wide variety of flavors, from dry eggplant to stuffed cabbage. The fixed tastes in the daily changing menu are olive oil, appetizers, and kebabs. Desserts are also quite varied.
Çiya Kebap Restaurant in Kadikoy Bazaar
Gunaydin Kebap Restaurant
Gunaydın restaurant, one of the symbols of the transition culture from the butcher to the restaurant, started in 1965 in a small butcher shop in the Butcher's Bazaar in Bostancı. Gunaydin Restaurant, which is an important start for the dissemination of cultural steakhouse restaurants in Turkey, is today a popular restaurant chain with many branches in Asia and the European side of İstanbul. Gunaydın restaurant, where you can find almost all kinds of kebabs, döners, and steak, is one of the important flavors stops for meat lovers. Gunaydın Meat Restaurant in Etiler, Bostancı, and many other places
Tavaci Recep Usta Kebap Restaurant - Bostanci
As Tavacı Recep Usta, its classic service quality and long-term experience that leaves a taste on the palate of those who taste it once continues to increase day by day. You will feel special in the restaurant Tavacı Recep Usta, which was established in a large area in Bostancı. The service speed, staff, and space are quite satisfactory. Even though those who like cooked meat prefer this place, the menu is quite rich: Stuffed ribs, Stuffed lamb, and baked pasta casserole.
Nusr-Et Steakhouse, one of the most popular places for meat lovers in Istanbul, has been serving since 2010 with its first restaurant in Etiler. The menu, where you can find all kinds of beef and lamb, brings a different interpretation to the meat restaurant culture. Nusr-Et, which stands out with its quality and cooking methods, converted this experience into a new delicious Nusret burger, which gained worldwide fame with its salt-spreading movement, and opened branches in Miami and Doha under the Nusr-Et Steakhouse brand. You can taste special burgers at Nusr-Et Burger branches of Nusr-Et Nişantaşı, Bebek, Kanyon, and İstinye Park, and the Grand bazaar branch.
Aziyade Kebap Restaurant in Pierre Loti Hill
There is a cafe with a wonderful view of Pierre Loti Hill with a sea view in the Golden Horn region of Istanbul. Aziyade Restaurant is one of the restaurants with a view of the Golden Horn on Pierre Loti Hill.
Best Turkish Kebab Restaurants
Feasting in Istanbul: A Food Lover's Guide to the City's Top Restaurants- 2023
Best Taksim/Beyoglu Restaurants: Asmalı Cavit Restaurant
Tucked away on a narrow lane in Beyoğlu's Asmalımescit neighborhood is Asmalı Cavit, an unassuming yet authentic restaurant widely recognized as one of Istanbul's best taverns. Here, the emphasis is on the flavor. Dine on award-winning tavern fare such as their signature meatballs, chops, grilled calamari, and liver, each dish a testament to their commitment to culinary excellence.
At Neolokal, Chef Maksut Aşkar and his business partner Erim Leblebicioğlu provide a stunning showcase of Turkish cuisine at its modernized best. The menu is seasonally driven, ensuring fresh, high-quality offerings year-round. Don't leave without a stop at their bar, a delightful blend of luxury and comfort.
Aret's Place (Aret'in Yeri)
Located in Taksim/Nevizade, Aret's Place is a sanctuary for good conversation, friendship, travel, and health. One or two hours in this cozy tavern will give you a real sense of Istanbul's unique tavern culture. With their friendly service and delicious seafood-based appetizers, this is a must-visit.
Rika Cihangir brings together the flavors of Italian, Asian, and Turkish cuisine, with the added delight of sushi. They offer breakfast, lunch, dinner, and nightlife services, ensuring a great experience any time of day.
Nestled in the antique-rich Çukurcuma neighborhood of Cihangir, Cuma restaurant is a must-visit spot for food lovers. With a magnificent terrace offering views of the Bosphorus and old Istanbul, you can enjoy a diverse menu featuring Mediterranean cuisine for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Seafood lovers should try their seasonal offerings, while pizza and pasta aficionados will find plenty to enjoy.
Brunch & Breakfast: Van Breakfast House (Van Kahvaltı Evi)
A flavorful bridge from Van to Istanbul, the Van Breakfast House is a haven for those who enjoy a rich, diverse breakfast. Don't miss their Menemen, buffalo cream, and village cheese. For dessert, try the kaput, a delicacy akin to halva.
The House Cafe
For a light start to the day, head over to The House Cafe. Enjoy a refreshing meal while taking in the beautiful views of the Bosphorus at this charming eatery.
Eminönü Fish Sandwich
A hot, fresh fish sandwich from Eminönü, savored while watching the bustling Bosphorus traffic, is a must-try experience. The bustling crowds of tourists and locals alike vouch for the goodness of these street-side seafood delights.
Ortaköy, famous for its baked potatoes (kumpir), is a top choice for street food enthusiasts. With numerous vendors per square meter, we leave the choice to you. Satisfy your craving for this classic comfort food while soaking in the vibrant atmosphere of this lively neighborhood.