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“Best fish restaurant and the view is a bonus”

Cihangir Doga BalIk Akarsu
Ranked #6,731 of 13,594 Restaurants in Istanbul
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Austin, Texas
Level 5 Contributor
92 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Best fish restaurant and the view is a bonus”
Reviewed June 13, 2012

A friend of a friend recommended Doga Balik to us as his favorite fish restaurant in Istanbul. Since this fellow lives there, we took his advice and found this small restaurant in the Cihangir section down the street from Taksim Square. It is located on the top (7th) floor of the Zurich hotel and has a stunning view of the water. We went at lunch time, so it was not crowded. This restaurant has a glorious meze buffet with about 2 dozen offerings. Then there is the main feature and that is a selection of the freshest fish. We selected the actual piece of fish that was to be our meal from the display case. Not only did we select the type of fish, but also the size of the portion. Prices are based on the type of fish and size of fhe piece. While it was being prepared we enjoyed the meze.
Everything was excellent and quite moderately priced.

  • Visited July 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank MargaretL377
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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15 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Berlin, Germany
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“terrible arrogant service”
Reviewed May 15, 2012

I went there on my last day on the recommendation of Lonely Planet and trip advisor !!
The waiter was uninterested in us, arrogant and the food was expensive and OK but nothing
special. On top, considering what a clean city Istanbul is the toilets where not cleaned there considering the high price tag of the place.

  • Visited May 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Kennylikesfood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
86 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“Disappointed, charged the "yabanci" price”
Reviewed July 29, 2011

I was excited to visit this restaurant after reading about it and the chef in a new cookbook, "Turquoise: A chef's travels in Turkey," last year. I had just moved to Istanbul and received this book as a gift. The authors talked about how the chef used many herbs/greens from his native homeland along the Aegean Sea and focused on fish. Perfect!

Or so I thought!

On May 28, I had made reservations for my in-laws, my husband and myself. When we arrived, they didn't have a reservation for us, but finally accommodated us with a table in the corner. First annoying thing - no menus! We finally had to ask how to order. Just go up to the "buffet" of greens and mezes and pick what you want. We weren't told that we were charged by per plate and how much the staff thought we put on our plate. 15-20 TL per plate later on the bill. The English wasn't the greatest, and my Turkish is okay.

Secondly, smoking in restaurants is not allowed in Istanbul. However, there were several tables nearby where people were smoking, esp. 2 ladies that seemed like they just lit up one cigarette after another. Although a few windows were opened to allow the smoke out. This certainly wasn't an outdoor terrace environment!

Thirdly, we were told to pick a fish, but weren't told the price. I should have known better by now, but didn't think it would ever cost the amount we were charged. I normally pay 7 to 12 TL per kilo for deniz levrek (sea bass) at the fish markets here. Final cost on our bill: 160 TL!

Overall, Doga Balik was just a disappointing experience. Here I was trying to impress my in-laws on their first night in Istanbul, and then this happens. Never again!

  • Visited May 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank gerberagirl76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stockholm, Sweden
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Rip off for tourists”
Reviewed June 17, 2011

Having received a good review in the Lonely Planet, this restaurant has obviously started to take advantage of tourists - providing poor service and overpriced food before they finally throw the bill on your table (before you have asked for it!). Food is nicely cooked but very plain and seriously overpriced. Locals seem to be treated differently which made us strongly suspect that the owners don't actually want tourists there.

  • Visited June 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank CeciliaM_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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