Named after the Bosphorus's bobbing cormorants, Karaköy's most popular cafe opened in June 2011. Julius Meinl, the Austrian coffee brand, created Karabatak as an office and hole-in-the-wall training cafe. Customers enjoyed Viennese coffee and cakes at extremely reasonable prices. Word quickly spread. The menu remains very limited (try the cappuccino-like weiner melange and the Sachertorte) but the space has grown. The vintage decor includes a converted tractor/bar. Upstairs is a quiet room with free Wi-Fi.
Housed in the Ottoman Bank (built in 1892), in the heart of the cultural quarter of Galata, the not-for-profit SALT Galata is a contemporary art gallery, workshop space and location for great talks, screenings and programmes. There are also SALT galleries in Beyoğlu and Ankara.
Unter is located right at the corner of The Karakoy Turkish Orthodox Virgin Mary Church, in a 3 story stone building from 1960s. Istanbul's first true gastro-pub is open late into the night, attracting urban upmarket locals with street style parties regardless of the season, being a great place to hang out with one of their great cocktails.
Located in the period French shopping arcade (Fransız Pasajı), kagithane means literally "house of paper". It's concept store full of quirky paper objects and souvenirs inspired by Istanbul's cats, street signs, fish and architecture. Always good for gift searching, the creative line includes coasters printed with traditional Turkish motifs, caricature postcards, and wrapping paper featuring sesame-encrustedsimit bread rolls and triangles of cream cheese.
In its earlier days Souq was a monthly pop-up bazaar spilling out on the streets, every time revolving around a different theme. The concept was so beloved by locals & visitors alike, that we are now lucky enough to find an exquisitely curated selection of mostly local products all week long in our neighbourhood. If you are into eclectic, hip, young brands or just looking for a different kind of souvenir stop by and may be have a chat with the fashionable founder Yaprak Aras.
Housed in a quiet backstreet in Karaköy, this moody, dark pub/eatery features some serious design elements worthwhile. Two floors of a lounge bar-cum-restaurant-cum-club have been carved out of a handsome neo-classical building, which was once a printing press. House music predominates.