Open since 2010, Seten quickly established itself as one of the best restaurants in the region. Centered around an arched courtyard which hosts a classical music concert twice yearly, the restaurant serves a variety of Anatolian and Turkish dishes. They are prepared from locally sourced ingredients using traditional cooking techniques. Guests can savor plates like yaprak sarma (rice wrapped in vine leaves and cooked in a tandir oven), and çiçek dolması (Göreme-style stuffed squash blossoms). You can also check out a wide range of homemade wines housed in the restaurant’s own cave wine cellar.
Omurca Art Café
Omurca Art Cave Café has the marks of its owner’s hands all over, and it’s all the better for it. Craftsman and artist Harun takes care of everything, from building the furniture to decorating the place. He also prepares home-cooked food and entertains guests with good conversations. It may take a while to find but you know you’re there once you spot the cat colony in the front garden. The menu is limited but it’s all authentic: ravioli, organic cheese, freshly baked bread and local cherries. Additionally, there is wine which you can also take home with you as a gift.
Kazım Eren Sokak, No : 27, Göreme, Istanbul, Turkey. +90 542 605 0062
An entrance enclosed in blooming ivy welcomes guests to Dibek, situated in the center of Göreme. Originally organized with living quarters upstairs and stables on the ground floor, the 475-year-old building underwent a complete renovation in 2004. The traditional atmosphere of the place is preserved by the low wooden tables around which guests can sit to enjoy typical Turkish food and homemade wine. Dumplings, known locally as manti, are among the highlights of Dibek’s menu. Another good pick is testi kebabı, a slow-cooked kebab meal prepared (upon reservation) in a sealed terracotta pot which is then broken at the table.
Dibek Restoran, 50180 Göreme/Nevşehir, Turkey. +90 384 271 2209
Topdeck Cave Restaurant
Topdeck Cave Restaurant enjoys an enviable reputation not only in Goreme, but also in the extended region. Specializing in local Anatolian cuisine, chef and owner Mustafa daily prepares four main dishes. These include a soup or two and a variety of appetizers, or mezze. The ingredients for these are sourced from local farmers. Housed beneath the family home in a calm and candlelit cave dwelling, it has room for no more than 10 tables. Six of these tables have chairs, the remaining four have floor cushions. Visiting during the high season means you probably have to reserve a table a couple days in advance.
Hafiz Abdullah Efendi Sokak No 15, 50180 Göreme, Turkey. +90 384 271 2474
Pumpkin Goreme Restaurant and Art Gallery
Decorated with an array of handcrafted colorful gourd or pumpkin lanterns, Pumpkin Goreme Restaurant promises a peaceful and fantastical ambiance. Housed in a small space under a barrel-vaulted ceiling, and a terrace at the front, this beautiful venue is a great place to unwind after a long day of walking. It takes away much of the stress from choosing what to order. The options are daily set menus of organic dishes, from three- to five-course meals, carefully chosen by the chef to represent a rich variety of flavors. Should you like the pumpkin lanterns enough, you’re free to purchase one of your liking.
İsali Mah. İçeri Dere Sok. Göreme, 50180 Nevşehir, Turkey. +90 5428085050
Café Keyif stands for a combination of values that are hard to beat: quality food, cheap prices, and family togetherness. This much you’ll learn from the hand-written sign at the door. Once inside the family-run restaurant’s homely atmosphere you’ll quickly realize it’s true. Staff is friendly and relaxed, far from the pushy vibe you frequently encounter elsewhere. They serve an impressive range of vegetarian and meat dishes, catering for curious guests keen to try regional fare and also something for less adventurous palates.
Orta Mahalle Karsibucak Caddesi No:16/A, Goreme 50180, Turkey. +90 384 271 2353
Beautiful rustic interiors and a garden-like outdoor terrace located just under one of Cappadocia’s fairy chimney rock formations only accounts for a part of the equation which makes a dinner at Kale Terrasse truly memorable. The host, Mustafa, or his son Murat, greets guests cordially. They give genuine suggestions on daily dishes and their more popular a la carte menu including a range of kebabs, pide, and their signature sac tava, served like a sizzler. Service is quick, even though it is regularly crowded.
Roma Kalesi Yanı, Müze Cad., Goreme, Turkey. +90 3842712808
Cappadocian Cuisine Restaurant
Waiters, cooks and hosts are all family here and it’s more than palpable that Cappadocian Cuisine is their object of pride. Chances are you’ll be greeted to an outdoor or indoor table by the charming matriarch. On the menu, expect fresh home-style food including the standout clay pot casseroles and local red wines at very reasonable prices. Slightly off the main road, it may be a bit hard to find but you shouldn’t let this discourage you. The hospitality alone is worth the effort.
Uzundere Cad. Göreme / Nevşehir, 50180 Nevşehir, Turkey. +90 3842712701
One for the views, Nostalgi Restaurant enjoys the same location as the hotel it is part of. Flanked by some high examples of the region’s chimney rock formations, and overlooking astonishing views of the town down below, this restaurant’s terrace makes for memorable sunsets. The food matches its graceful surroundings, bountiful salads, slow-cooked lamb and chicken in clay pots and mezze rich in cold appetizers called sogus.
Gaferli Mah. Kale Sok. No:4, 50180, Turkey. +90 384 271 2301
Spread across a sizable open space, green lawns and well-lit wooden indoors, Mulberry Café sits just on the outskirts of Goreme. This family-run cafe, managed by a mother and daughter team, serves an array of savory pancakes, traditional Goreme specials, homemade desserts, and vegetarian dishes. These are often made from the produce grown in the ample garden out back (this is where the mulberries you’re likely to be treated to come from). It’s worth stopping here simply to enjoy a fresh juice on one of the many outdoors bean bag chairs.
Gaferli Mah., 50180 Göreme, Turkey. +90 5305656715