Really the best place to eat in the Karaköy neighborhood, Karaköy Lokantası has become somewhat of an institution that is simply consistent in its excellence. Now it must be noted that there are two separate menus, a lunch menu focusing on more simple home-cooked Turkish meals, and the dinner menu, that adheres to the rakı plus meze mindset.
Kemankeş Caddesi No.37A, Karaköy, +90 212 292 44 55
As the name suggest, Meze by Lemon Tree specializes in meze (small tapas-like dishes) that abide to seasonal ingredients and ingenious flavor combinations. After you order a bottle of rakı (an essential), take a pick from the daily-prepared options such as eggplant puree with tahini or sea bass ceviche with lime juice.
Meşrutiyet Caddesi No.83/B, Tepebaşı, +90 212 252 83 02
There’s a beautiful terrace in the middle of the Pera district inside a renovated neoclassical building with marble staircases and large ornate doors. We’re talking about Cachi, inside the Adahan boutique hotel, a space where the afternoon breeze makes its way through the terrace doors and past the natural wood furniture. Cachi is also a great option for breakfast, with a healthy open buffet Turkish breakfast that leaves nothing to the imagination.