Ortaköy is lovely. It includes every amazing thing a person can ask for: the sea scenery, a breathtaking mosque, yummy kumpir, adorable cats and dogs, cozy places, and great people (See “Ortaköy”). I am lucky because I spent my first year in Istanbul in Ortaköy and walked through every inch of it.
Most nights, except for a few times that I cooked in my dorm and created a mess, I ate out. That is why I decided to prepare a “Where to Eat in Ortaköy” list for you. Although I have only five places on my list, Ortaköy definitely has many more.
Balkan Halk Lokantası
The one and only Balkan Halk Lokantası… Believe me when I say it is a hidden treasure. The majority of my meals were from Balkan Lokantası (See “Balkan Halk Lokantası”). They have your typical Turkish traditional home food for an affordable price. They offer many options (including red meat, white meat, and meatless). All of their food is so delicious and fresh that it can even fulfill your yearning for your mother’s food.
Also, because of their incredible food, it is a great place to take your friends. When I brought one of my friends to Balkan Lokantası, it quickly became one of our go-to places in Ortaköy (we had many conversations and laughed under the tree). My friend even went there by herself and took her friends there. Balkan Lokantası makes you an addict. :)
If you go there, do not leave without tasting their kabak tatlısı (English: Turkish pumpkin dessert). For me, it is a must-taste.
“Balkan Halk Lokantası”
Balıkçı Zeki is where my father and I eat when he comes to Ortaköy. They go fishing daily and their cook is very well. In my opinion, they are the most successful seafood restaurant in Ortaköy.
Their place is tiny but it makes it intimate. The place is decorated in a blue and white concept which is not surprising since they are a seafood restaurant.
The House Cafe
The House Cafe has the best Bosphorus view (See “The House Cafe - View”). Even only for the view, you can go there. I mostly brought my guests to drink tea or coffee and at the same time enjoy the view. Every guest I have brought has appreciated it.
On this list, The House Cafe is the only place serving alcohol. If you want to drink, The House is for you. Also, they have a variety of options when it comes to food. Their portion size is a little bit small. But their food is always fresh. Especially, their salads and cakes. Their food is pretty pricey. Of course, you are paying for the view.
If your guests are important to you or if you feel fancy, you should go to The House.
"The House Cafe - View”
Bond Coffee Co
Bond has a different place in my heart. If a person I know came to Ortaköy, I would take them to Bond for dinner and then a coffee. Their interior design and backyard are very pleasant, thus I have spent most of my time there (See “Bond Backyard”). Their staff is friendly and welcoming as well.
Their coffee is very delicious, and they are trying to add more options. Every time I visit them, they have something new on their menu. Their soup, mantı, pesto pasta, and brownie are incredibly tasty. The soup’s portion is huge and very filling. But I could not say the same with their mantı and pesto pasta; their portion sizes are small.
Bond is a great place to study as well. During my prep year, I studied for exams, did my homework, completed my projects, and even had an interview here.
Bonus: Coffee Time Now
Coffee Time Now is the bonus on my list. I could not finish this list without mentioning it. It is small compared to other cafes in Ortaköy and has an intimate feeling. Its lighting, design, staff, and cat make it a perfect place to drink your coffee. It has an outdoor place and a mezzanine. The cat is generally in the mezzanine ;). I promise that you will become a regular in a short time.
Hopefully, this article has helped you decide on a place to eat in Ortaköy. If you give a shot at one of these places, you can mention your experience in the comments section. Or if you have a secret discovery that I am not aware of in Ortaköy, let me know!
Balkan Halk Lokantası. Kahvaltılık, www.kahvaltilik.com/mekanlar/details/4e1c1a926284102ec1998cfb. Accessed 9 July 2022.
Bond Backyard. it.foursquare.com/v/bond-coffee-co/59749ecd35811b1c183708e1. Accessed 9 July 2022.
The House Cafe - View. Gezenti Anne, gezentianne.com/tag/ortakoy-restoranlari/. Accessed 9 July 2022.
Ortaköy. gezilecekyerlertr.com/ortakoy-gezilecek-yerler/. Accessed 9 July 2022.