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Best of Meyhanes

Refik, Istanbul
Subjects such as "Drinking Rakı", "What are the best dishes accompanying rakı?" "what are the subjects at Rakı table" on meyhane and rakı culture covers a large place on media recently.

Daily Hürriyet Newspaper asked writers who enjoy rakı and gourmets and listed the 20 favorite meyhane in Turkey.

Refik Aslan opened this Meyhane at Tünel Sofyalı Street in 1954 and still run the place with his son. Refik offers Turkish dishes during lunchtime and serves as meyhane at night. Karalahana dolması (stuffed kale), stewed anchovy, and kuzu sarma (lamb's chitterling) are the specialties. It is open everyday except Sundays until 01:00. Reservation is required for weekend. Another pleasure is the tables on the street in summer.

Safa has been carrying on to serve as a traditional meyhane in its one-story building at Yedikule since opening, which is at least 100 years ago. The chat doesn't turn into uproar due to its high ceilings. Arnavut ciğeri (fried liver), special cheese and lakerda (salt bonito) are the favorite mezes. It is also famous by always-fresh fish. Safa is open everyday until midnight.

İmroz was first opened in Kerpen Arcade - Balıkpazarı in 1941. Now it is located at Nevizade Sokak. The owner and partner Yorgo Okumuş is still working. Lakerda (salt bonito), sauced bonito and tarama (made by spawn and bread) are the most famous ones among the 35 kinds of meze İmroz offers. It is open everyday until midnight. Reservation is accepted until 19:00. Terrace is open in summers.

Yakup 2
Yakup 2 is on Asmalımescid Street near Tünel and has serving there for 27 years. It is famous for special hot mezes. Arnavut ciğeri (fried liver), mushrooms with butter and kağıtta pastırma (dried meet flavored with cumin and garlic and cooked and served in a special paper) are the indispensable tastes. The lunch is served between 12:00-14:30 and dinner is between 18:30-01:00.

Huzur - Cavit'in yeri (Cavit's Place)
Cavit Güneş opened this meyhane located at Galatarasay Çiçek Pasajı in 1969. Normally it is open until 23:00 but can stay open until 02:00 according to the customer. There are 20 kinds of mezes and squash with yogurt and purslanes are among the favorites.

This 35-year old establishment is at Bağdat Caddesi, Bostancı and offers 40 kinds of meze. The owner Mehmet Ali Işık who was once a waiter, doesn't hesitate to say "There is no other place offering more mezes". Pastırmalı börek, humus (made of mashed chickpeas and spices) and stewed fish are favorites. It is open everyday from noon to midnight and reservation is required during weekends.

Kuleli is at Samatya for 25 years and famous with its seafood. Kalamar (calamari), ançuez (salted anchovy), sardalya (sardine), ahtapot (octopus), lakerda (salt bonito) and çiroz (dried mackerel) are the favorite mezes. It may be difficult to find a table without reservation.

Seviç was first founded as a bear house at Çiçek Pasajı, Galatarasay in 1948. The foreign customers enjoy the site and Hungarian violinist Korçi performs between 15:00-19:00. Madame Anahit entertains the visitors at night by her accordion. It is open everyday until midnight.

Mehmet and Bilent Tekmen are the owners of this meyhane in Oran, Ankara. Stuffed grape leaves, börek, pastırma and döner are the interesting dishes for they are made of fish. It is a small, cozy place with a capacity of 45 and therefore try to make reservation a week ago. It is open everyday, except Monday, from 12:00 to 24:00. Credit cards are not accepted.

Kör Agop
Kör Agop is at the historical customs building in Kumkapı and a 65-year old establishment. Foreign customers prefer it. Special cold and hot mezes called "Kör Agop Style" are famous. For example Kör Agop soup is a kind of fish soup. It is open everyday between 11:00-01:30. Fasıl Heyeti (group of oriental musicians) performs live music from 20:00 on.

It is located at Nevizade Street in Galatarasay. It is famous for uskumru dolması (stuffed mackerel), topik (an Armenian meze), Çerkez tavuğu (Circassian chicken) and Boncuk tatlısı (bead dessert) made of apple are among the favorites of the site. Live music by guitar on Fridays and Saturdays.

This site is at Nevizade in Galatasaray and known as "Eski Lefter" (Lefter is the legendary soccer player in Turkey). It is almost impossible to find place during weekends.

Hasir is a 55-year old meyhane at Tarlabaşı next to Beyoğlu Security Directorate. Famous for its topik and cheese soufflé.

It is on Kameriye Sokak, Balık Pazarı and favorite among tourists.

Neyle Meyle
It is again at Nevizade Street in Galatasaray and famous with eggplant varieties and mackerel with soy sauce. Turkish and Greek music is played.

One of the oldest meyhanes in Ankara and located on Bayındır Street. It serves home made dishes for lunch and meze and fish for dinner.

The most famous meyhane in Balık Pazarı. Every day live oriental music.

Çiçek Meyhane
The most famous meyhane in Antalya. Local mezes such as Hibeş and Ottoman güveç (casserole) are customers' favorites. Fasıl heyeti (group of Oriental musicians) performs until 23:00

Deniz Restaurant
It is among the favorite meyhanes in Ayvalık and also known as Ayhan'ın Yeri (Ayhan's Place). Salad made by regional herbs, mezes and roasted fish are delicious.

Tarihi İstanbul Meyhanesi
It is the oldest restaurant in Adana and turns into a traditional meyhane with the tables set on the street.

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Latest comments about this article

 By www.museumofamnesia.org  7.9.2003

FYI: Please update your site! The wonderful accordion player, Madame Anahit who played nightly at the Seviç restuarant in Çiçek Pasajı, passed away in August 2003.

Would you like to add your comment about this article? Click here!

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