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Giritli Restaurant in Istanbul

Our last night in Istanbul (6/18) we had dinner at the Giritli and had a fabulous time. It's a little hard to find but anyone nearby will point you in the right direction. We were seated in the tree shaded courtyard and almost immediately food started to appear. For the four of us, 19 separate dishes were brought out to share. There were blackeye peas and greens, humus, seaweed salad, smoked salmon that they described as pastrami (very good), pickled fish and smoked mackerel (the best) and much, much more. The wine flowed and even the white was good. After we snacked on all of starters and had more wine, then...the entree was offered. We asked if they would make one smaller dish that we could share as we were full or near full buy this time. Very friendly staff, very attentive and all of the food that I tasted was good. Fish and veggies only, no red meat or chicken. Dinner per person was 150 lira per person, a little less than $50 per person. Lots of food, lots of wine and dessert. Seems like a bargain when you consider we spent over 2 hours eating, drinking and discussing the wonders of Istanbul. We finished up by walking to the Four Seasons and went to their roof top bar to have a drink and enjoy the awesome view of the Blue Mosque at night. The Four Seasons Bar was expensive but the view was worth the drink prices. Afterwards, we strolled the Hippodrome to enjoy the people of Istanbul celebrating breaking their fast, we were there during Ramadan. Very good restaurant, great evening.

Keith

Posted by
6073 posts

No doubt it was delicious (the pics look great on Tripadvisor) but $50 for mezze (or any dinner) is not exactly a bargain even in NYC... let alone Istanbul. Given the exchange rate, that is one expensive Turkish dinner (everything is relative of course, but that would not qualify as a bargain). You should see how inexpensive and plentiful fresh veggies and fish are at the markets. I splurged on brunch at the Four Seasons Istanbul once just to sample different foods and it was something like $35 fixed price - way out of reach for the average local. While delicious, not a bargain either by any stretch. A bargain is a 5 Lira fresh mackerel sandwich sold off the fishing boats off the Galata Bridge...that was probably the best value I've had in Istanbul, but of course no charm or atmosphere (or anywhere comfortable to sit).

Posted by
36 posts

We had cocktails at the Four Seasons and really enjoyed it too. It was our first night in Turkey, and we didn't realize at that point how difficult it would be to find good cocktails.

Posted by
25 posts

Agnes, you are 100% correct, it was not inexpensive and there are many wonderful places to eat that are far less and we generally frequent them for many reasons one being enjoying the people who frequent the smaller restaurants and tasting local and often very fresh food. I recommend the Giritli because the food was quite good, the ambiance outstanding and it seemed and was a great way to re-live our adventures in Istanbul while looking forward to what was to come in Italy. What was also a treat was the variety of food we were offered. Anyone reading this should know that it is not an inexpensive restaurant, that's pointed out in the guide. With that said, I still whole heatedly recommend it. For us, the whole evening was one we will always remember. Safe Travels!

Keith