“Katie Parla’s Istanbul” available on the App Store!

Istanbul is deliciously overwhelming and I visit every chance I get, seeking out the best meat, offal, markets and pickles the city has to offer. You can find all my recommendations for food and drink in my app “Katie Parla’s Istanbul” available in the App Store. Here are some highlights:

Asmalı Cavit: A meyhane in Beyoğlu and one of the best places in the neighborhood for a traditional meal of mezes and raki. Asmalımescit Cad. No:16/D – Beyoğlu.

Kaymakçı Pando: Another Istanbul institution, this Beşiktaş breakfast spot serves kaymak (clotted cream made with buffalo’s milk) with honey and bread. Köyiçi Meydanı Sokak – Beşiktaş.

Tarihi Karaköy Balıkçısı: Tucked away on a back street amongst vendors selling hardware and scuba gear, Tarihi Karaköy Balikcisi may very well be the best fish restaurant in town. Go at lunch when Maharrem Usta is working the charcoal. Tersane Cad. Kardeşim Sok. No:45/A – Karaköy – website.

Kantin: Owned by my close friend chef Şemsa Denizsel (who has been called the Alice Waters of Turkey), Kantin uses fresh, seasonal, meticulously sourced ingredients to create both traditional and creative dishes. Open until 8pm. No reservations Akkavak Sokak 30 – Nişantaşı – website.

Mikla: Chef Mehmet Gürs’ “New Anatolian” restaurant in the Marmara Pera Hotel continues to set the standard in Istanbul’s fine dining scene.

Adana Oçakbaşı: Simply the best place in Istanbul for grilled sweetbreads and Adana kebab. Bozkurt Mh. Bay Sungur Sokak – Kurtuluş.

Kenan Usta Ocakbaşı: This grill house near Taksim does the best külbastı (charcoal-grilled marinated beef) in town. If you have one grilled meat dish in all of Istanbul, it should be this one.

Pideban Sarıyer: Stellar Black Sea style pide. The long and narrow closed ground meat pide is to die for. Bahçeköy Cad. No:1 (Shell arkası) – Sarıyer.

Fatih Karadeniz Pidecisi. Probably the best pide in town. Buyukkaraman Cad. No.57 – Fatih.