Monthly Archives: October 2011
After spending a week on the Gullet in Turkish waters we headed to Istanbul for 4 days of eating and exploring. After a very crazy ride into the city in the worst traffic you could imagine we arrived at the Ciragan Palace Kempinski Hotel on the Bosphorus. The location on the water is beautiful the traffic in this area is terrible.
Dinner the first night was at Sunset Bar and Grill a view of both bridges and the entire city across the Bosphorus. The food was a B but the service and view were an A+. They eat later in Turkey so if you arrive before 8 most places are very quiet.
The next morning we met our guide Anka Benli and headed out to see the Blue Mosque and The Basilica Cistern before we had lunch and of course the Grand Bazaar was waiting for us. Anka can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or www.ankabenli.com , Anka has been the guide for many well know American chefs and personalities, including Martha Stewart, and Anothony while he was filming No Reservations. After a lunch at Hotel Yesii EV in the garden restuarant called Sera we headed to the rug shop. The owner Recep Sefer is well respected and we were shown amazing rugs of every kind. Go to www.orienthandmadecarpets.com, location is Nuruosmaniye Caddesi #68 in the main bazaar. Of course I bought a beautiful carpet for a new bedroom in our Sun Valley house. After more shopping we headed back to the hotel to rest and get ready for dinner.
Dinner was at a fish reataurant called Eftalya, www.eftalya.net . We shared plates of tomatoes and onions, fish balls, large local prawns grilled to perfection and then the waiter presented a huge fresh local white fish that they grilled and served at the table. the fish has a simple olive oil and lemon squeezed over. We were the only tourists since it seems to be a true local place. Be sure to go after 9pm for a fun active meal.
The next morning we met Guzin Yalin, Guzine is very involved it everything to do with food, food products and cusine in Turkey.
After coffee and a quick conversation sitting on the Bosphorus in an area called Bebek. We had lunch next to the spice market at a Kabob place called “Hamdi”. Guzin explained about the flat bread called Lahmacun with meat or herbs and Simit, a bread covered in sesame seeds and baked. I learned so much in just one morning I look forward to our next meeting. Thank you to all the people tha made our short visit in Istanbul a perfect beginning to a long friendship with the city and new friends.
After many months of planning we were joined by 10 friends on a beautiful gullet in Turkey for a week of cruising. Our yacht was chartered through— bluefunyachting.com, the name of the boat was Caner IV. The boat was fashioned after the old style sail boat called a Gullet. Caner IV is 128 feet long with 6 beautiful staterooms and was only 3 years old. (Our boat and crew)
We picked the boat up in Bodrum, Turkey and headed out for 7 days of swimming, eating, and exploring. The food was so fresh and our chef created 3 full meals a day. We never ate a meal off the boat since you could not have found a better meal or service any place.
After each person would rise to sunshine we looked forward to breakfast at 9am the outside table was covered with platters of fresh fruit, tomatoes, peeled of course, cucumbers, olives and the freshest yogurt and cheese. After breakfast we would find our places on the deck for a cruise to the next bay for swimming and reading.
Our course was charted by our captain and we would move to a different port, bay, each day. We would swim in the 85 degree water and then get ready for a perfect lunch each day at 2pm. We had bought our wine in Bodrum and found that many of the local Turkish wines were not bad. Lunch was usually started with a toast of local rose’ and a few bottles of local beer.
We did anchor one morning and go to a small village in Selimiye Bay. We went to the local market where the crew loaded up on tomatoes, peaches and feta cheese while the ladies did a little shopping at a shop called Ayna, www.aynabutik.com,. We all bought wonderful cotton dresses that the owner had created., not expensive and we had so much fun wearing them for dinner that night. (white night)
Dinner was started with the traditional mezes, 5 or 7 platters of starters, okra stewed in tomatoes, beans many different ways, kebabs and often flaky pastries filled with meats, cheeses and grains, hummus is so flavorful and smooth with plenty of olive oil ready to be scooped up. The main course would follow, always a huge green salad loaded with fresh parsley and different types of greens. The chef had a grill set up on the back of the boat and grilled fish, steak and chicken with lemon as the main course. Perfect dessert and fresh fruit ended another perfect day.
After 7 days we pulled up anchor on the last morning and headed to land. Thc crew pulled into the private dock at the Kempinski Hotel Barbaros Bay just out side of Bodrum. The hotel was great but after so many amazing meals on the boat, no one was happy about the food at the hotel. I will publish a few recipes in the recipe section that I know you will all enjoy.