Metropolis on Two Continents

15 of the best restaurants in Istanbul

Istanbul’s restaurant scene is thriving and choosing the best restaurants in Istanbul is a lot harder than it used to be.

Growing interest in the restaurant scene here has been sparked by a recent influx of celebrity chefs such as Jamie Oliver as well as the arrival of restaurant brands such as Cipriani and Zuma.

It’s not just global brands. A number of homegrown restaurants have prospered. With such a potent mix of celebrity chefs, global names and homegrown brands, it’s no easy matter choosing where to dine in Istanbul.

Here, we’ve carefully compiled a selection of 15 restaurants in Istanbul offering a sumptuous variety of worldly cuisine from traditional Turkish to modern Japanese. Each restaurant featured is a destination not only for exemplary eats, but also for stunning décor and unforgettable experiences.

Sunset Istanbul

Sunset Istanbul

Sunset Grill and Bar Istanbul boasting a stunning view of istanbul in the heart of city. Sunset Istanbul is located on the hills of Ulus and has one of the greatest views of Istanbul, overlooking the Bosphorus. The food is excellent and a mixture of international cuisine and Turkish dishes. It also has an excellent Sushi Bar attended by Japanese chefs trained in their native homeland. If not ordering from the sushi or sashimi menu, other appetizers include foie gras on mandarin brioche, octopus carpaccio or salmon tartar. Lighter starters...

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360 Istanbul

360 Istanbul

360 Istanbul is the place to see and be seen, on the top floor of the historical Misir Building. The multi award winning 360 istanbul is set in a penthouse perched on a 19th century apartment building overlooking the old embassy row in Beyoglu. It commands a 360 breathe taking view of istanbul all the way up of St Antoine’s Church and across the Bosphorus strait to the Hagia Sophia and out to the Sea of Marmara. 360 is open for lunch and dinner, offering a twist on the modern Turkish meze fused with international cuisine and an...

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Anjelique Istanbul

Anjelique Istanbul

Anjelique Istanbul is a place for fun, chill-out and full enjoyment with fascinating view of Bosphorus and decoration. Both a world restaurant and nightclub, Anjelique is situated in a three-story seaside mansion in Ortaköy. With a sweeping view of the Bosphorus, its sea level floor serves Asian cuisine while the middle and top floors feature delicious Mediterranean dishes. After dinner, it turns into one of Istanbul’s most famous nightspots; the fun goes on until dawn with different music on every floor. Top specialties of Anjelique are...

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Ulus 29

Ulus 29

Ulus 29 is an Istanbul classic and popular restaurant with stylish modern Turkish theme. Open since December 1993, Ulus 29 is owned and managed by Metin Fadıllıoğlu. – a name synonymous with offering quality service, ambiance and a fine dining experience to local and international gastronomy aficionados. The restaurant and its adjoining bar contain among the most inventive and outrageous chandeliers in a city obsessed by cut-glass lighting. Ulus 29 is located on a hilltop in the upscale neighborhood of Ulus. The indoor dining area has...

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Mikla

Mikla

Mikla is an urban, sleek and stylish restaurant located on the roof top floor of the fashionable “The Marmara Pera” hotel. The restaurant is funky retro with chrome 70’s and 50’s furniture and a stunning wooden rail-sleepers bar.” The magical views over the city stretch to the Hagia Sophia and the Topkapi Palace where you almost travel back through time to the heart of the Old Istanbul. Mikla opened in October 2005. The initial idea was to create a refined but contemporary “Istanbullu” Restaurant. Both the menu and the general...

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Zuma Istanbul

Zuma Istanbul

Zuma offers something completely new – a sophisticated twist on the traditional japanese izakaya style of informal eating and drinking. The ethos behind Zuma is to deliver an authentic flavour of the east while respecting the traditions of the past. Zuma Restaurant, situated in Ortakoy prevailing the Bosphorous view, is serving its customers with its terrace in summer as well as its indoor facilities. Its plain decoration, created loyal to its original identity, forms a suitable ground for the rich visuality of the food being served.The...

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Nusr-Et Steakhouse

Nusr-Et Steakhouse

Nusr-Et Steakhouse is one of the best steakhouses in Istanbul, Nusr-Et is a Meatlover’s paradise, with a wide selection of delicious meat, such as Lamb T-bone, T-Bone Steak, Lamb Chops, two kinds of meatballs and more. Nusr-Et Steakhouse was established in 2010 by Nusret Gökçe and Mithat Erdem. Since then they have been the ambassadors of steak culture in İstanbul. Nusr-Et Steakhouse became the leading steakhouse by serving delicious meats in a homelike atmosphere. The meats here have specific names, exclusive to Nusr-et such as...

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GQ Bar Istanbul

GQ Bar Istanbul

GQ Bar Istanbul, GQ Magazine’s first night-club globally opened in Istanbul’s upscale district, Etiler. Located on lively Nispetyie Street, and spread over two floors with a capacity of 250, the GQ Bar Istanbul is now open for lunch, dinner, late night drinks and dancing. With over 750m2, the space intends to be a meeting point for those who are passionate about premium quality leisure and cuisine. By means of the numerous outshining design details, GQ Bar transforms itself throughout the journey and keeps up with various gatherings. It...

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P.F. Chang’s Istanbul

P.F. Chang’s Istanbul

P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, Inc. is a U.S. based restaurant company that features a blend of high-quality, Chinese-inspired cuisine and American hospitality in a sophisticated, contemporary bistro setting. Pei Wei Asian Diner offers a modest menu of freshly prepared pan-Asian cuisine in a relaxed, warm environment offering attentive counter service and take-out flexibility. In addition to its delicious dishes, unique desserts and big portions, P.F. Chang’s also feature a broad beverage menu including wine, special cocktails, sake, beer,...

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Mia Mensa

Mia Mensa

Mia Mensa is one of the most popular and classical Italian restaurants in Istanbul, right by the Bosphorus. Located at Kuruçeşme between the two bridges with a charming view and secret garden. Mia Mensa has been opened since 1994 and serves seven days a week for both lunch and dinner. it is popular to keep enjoying at Bar & Lounge until 02:00 am in the summer time. Popular nights at Mia Mensa are Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. The lunch time is ideal for business meetings and friend gatherings. In the winter time, Mia Mensa is a...

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Cahide 3D

Cahide 3D

Cahide 3D restaurant features outrageous drag queens and comedians serving up dinner and a show, featuring interactive cabaret, comedy, and karaoke at the infamous Cahide 3D Restaurant. The drag staff turns up the fun as your bartenders, waitresses and performers. Cahide (pronounced Ja-heed) is one of its kind in Turkey and is fabulous place, very avant guard, very extravagant entertainment. The layout of the venue is decadent with round booth style tables spread along the back of the venue which then leads down to long rectangular tables and...

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Park Samdan Istanbul

Park Samdan Istanbul

Park Şamdan is a Nişantaşı classic and has been operating in Istanbul’s Nişantaşı neighborhood since 1982. For elegant traditional Turkish cuisine, look no further than Park Samdan, located in the fashion center of Istanbul. The restaurant specializes in classic dishes with a continental touch, such as the delectable spinach root appetizer or the sweet and sour shrimp enveloped by melt-in-your-mouth “kadayyf” pastry. For dessert, try the panna cotta served with a raspberry sauce. There is also wide selection of both...

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Kosebasi Istanbul

Kosebasi Istanbul

Köşebaşı was founded in 1995 as the first upscale Turkish restaurant, serving the authentic tastes of eastern Mediterranean cuisine to its guests. Its first location was a villa in Levent, an elegant neighborhood in Istanbul that has served as a megapole for centuries. The award winning menu features various mezes, hand grounded and marinated cuts of barbequed meats, traditional Anatolian side dishes and regional breads. Köşebaşı drives its recipes and spices from the Mediterranean region of Tarsus in Turkey. Chefs in Tarsus first...

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Paper Moon Istanbul

Paper Moon Istanbul

Paper Moon opened its Istanbul branch since 1996 following Milan and New York, offering excellent Italian food and service with a great variety of pizzas and carpaccios. Papermoon Istanbul is popular among Istanbul high society and famous people and as trendy as anything in Los Angeles or New York. Most popular dishes include linguine, seafood pappardelle, gorgonzola gnocchi and spaghetti vongole. With its sophisticated design, tranquil atmosphere, meticulous service and delicious food, the world-famous Italian restaurant Paper Moon has been...

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Gaja Restaurant / Roof

Gaja Restaurant / Roof

Fine dining Gaja restaurant offers sophisticated contemporary continental cuisine with superb views over the Bosphorus and an extensive wine list with over 160 local and International labels. Set in the heart of Istanbul, Gaja embraces it all: The finest ingredients, premium wines, high quality service, a breathtaking view and the timeless silhouette of Istanbul and a sky that takes on all shades of blue… Originally a Sanskrit word, “Gaja” symbolizes fertility, royalty and richness. No wonder our name was inspired by it. With its...

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