The Best Wine Bars In Istanbul
Turkish Wine | © Chris Pople/Flickr
The world’s fourth leading producer of grapes, Turkey is just beginning to make its mark on the international wine market. Lots of boutique vineyards in the Marmara, Aegean, Black Sea, Central and Eastern Anatolian, and Mediterranean regions produce some delicious red and white varieties. Some of the standouts can be found at Istanbul
’s haute cuisine restaurants, which feature wine pairings with only local brands. However, there are also some great wine bars where you can explore the different wines Turkey
has to offer. Here are our top selections.
Certainly the city’s best wine bar, Solera’
s owner Süleyman Er used to work in the restaurant
and wine serving industry before deciding to travel alone to explore the world’s vineyards. When he came back to Istanbul, it only seemed natural to open a wine bar where he would serve his favorite findings. The small space, with a few tables and walls decked out in row after row of wine bottles, is absolutely perfect for having a long conversation over a few glasses of wine. The best part is that Er, or one of his servers, will gladly help you pick out something perfect, whether it’s wine from a local boutique vineyard or something from abroad. You can also drop by and buy a bottle to drink at home, but, if you do decide to sit down, try the cheese platter or the pizza, which is made fresh next door.
Corvus Wine & Bite
Founded in 2002, Corvus was a dream come true for architect Reşit Soley who established the boutique vineyard in Bozcaada, a beautiful Aegean island. Varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot, Syrah, and Cabernet Franc are grown on the vineyard but, more importantly, local grapes Çavuş, Vasilaki, Kuntra and Karalahana are also protected and grown. At Corvus Wine & Bite, you can taste all the flavorful blends of this boutique vineyard’s grapes; really some of the best wine you can find in Turkey. And, if you’re a bit hungry, the menu – featuring homemade bread, jams and cheeses – goes together perfectly with a glass (or two) of wine.
Corvus Wine & Bite, Şair Nedim Caddesi No. 5, Akaretler, Beşiktaş, Istanbul, Turkey, +90 212 260 54 70
Sensus Wine & Cheese Boutique
Bar, Wine Bar, Wine Seller, Wine, Turkish
One of the best places to get a pretty comprehensive view of what wine Turkey has to offer, Sensus
combines the concepts of wine bar and restaurant. Once you make your way down the stairs into the cellar-like space, you’ll quickly notice the abundant amount of available wines that take over almost all of the wall space. Apart from the few international options, Sensus focuses on local productions, with hundreds of different wines of select origin and grape variety. If you’d like to try some wine on the spot, make sure to also try some of their cheeses, also exclusively from Turkey. You can also just drop in to buy a few bottles to take home.