Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Two Stores

The Askaroz Fish Store: In fact, this entry should have been written by our retired blogger Adil, because he first mentioned this place. However, as we explained earlier, he gave up writing long time ago. The ‘starchitect’ of the future nowadays deals with trendy projects. We hope he will get his pen back and join us soon.

Askoroz Fish  Store (Old One)
The Askaroz Fish Store is probably the only answer to this question: “Where can we eat inexpensive and fine fish in Beyoglu?” Although alcohol is not served, it is possible to order your meal from another venue, just in front of the fish store, called Divers Club which provides a rich menu of alcoholic drinks (The building looks like bricked English apartment buildings).

We started with fish soup. We were a little bit bothered because it was limpid. However, it was tasty. It seemed boneless fish gave off the smell well. It is just fine to order at least half a portion for a good start, especially in cold days. There are multiple fish options. Red mullet is wonderful if it is the season. They cut haddock into thin slices. Sardines and anchovies are fried on pan. I haven’t tried any big fish but several customers were eating grilled ones. The personnel were warm-blooded and cheerful.

Another good thing here is that they serve a fresh and generous salad. The salad seemed as it were double portion. The price is reasonable as well. The place is rather simple and spit-and-sawdust. There are only three tables inside. Fish is served on paper covered plastic plates.

Two portion fish (horse-mackerel, sardines or anchovy), a king size salad, fish soup and coke cost 25 Liras. It is impossible to find such a cost-effective place in Beyoglu. In case you order some raki in Divers Club, then you will be overjoyed. The Askaroz Fish Store is located on the far end of Süslü Saksi Street.

P.S. After I wrote this entry, the store was moved 20 metres further, to a larger place. It is no longer that spit-and-sawdust (this expression always gets my dander up) but food is still tasty.
Dönerci Şahin Usta: This chapter should be written by Imerhan because he was constantly pigging out there when he was an economics student at the University of Istanbul. Nevertheless, it is not possible to make him write anything while he has so many ups and downs these days.

Şahin Usta is located just in front of the of Grand Bazaar’s Gate of Swordsmen (Kılıççılar Kapısı). The store is no larger than 6 square metres but there is always a long line to buy döner. Only two types of products are served here: bread and pita sandwich. We tried döner with pita. Usta filled pita with döner. Inside, there are tomatoes, onions and pickles if you wish.

He wrapped pita and rolled it with a paper. It is costly, 10 Liras but döner is magnificent. If you do not prefer döner as dry as possible (just like me), then you may not like Şahin Usta but if you are after ‘pure’ meat, it is worth trying, at least once! The other exit of the Beyazid Campus (University of Istanbul), there is a kiosk called Sebil Büfe, which also only sells döner sandwich. It was literarily an historical ‘kiosk’. This place can be a good option for ‘pure döner addicts’. I think one problem with both places is that they do not prefer to use sauces. Döner without sauce is too dry and it gets cold too quickly. However, I appreciate the fact that they only sell döner, it is amazing that they only specialized on döner (not toasted sandwich or kebab).

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