a table with a view and a kitchen filled with love

nicole - .gunseliruzgar comNicole
Bogazkesen Cad. Tomtom Kaptan Sk, No:18
Beyoglu, Istanbul 34433
+90 212 292 4467

Contemporary Mediterranean cuisine: €€€€
Chef de Cuisine: Kaan Sakarya
Chef Pâtissie: Aylin Yazıcıoğlu
Reservation recommendednicole-logo

This is all about contemporary dining on the highest level. I knew that Nicole only offered set menus, but even if the reviews only praise … I could never prepare myself so such a flavorful mystery culinary tour as my Christmas Eve 2014.taksi

Of course, my evening started with a mad taxi ride, my driver didn’t speak one word of English, but he did when I left the car. He honestly didn’t have a clue where we were going. He stopped and asked the police, other taxi drivers, pedestrians … and …
It was like being in the roller-coaster going up and down the extremely narrow backstreets.
He got me there in time and when I left the car he had learned to say; Oh my God!!!!

Nicole - culinarybackstreets com

If you’re thinking of having a flavorful evening too …. Tell the driver that you’re going to the Italian Embassy,

Nicole is situated on the top floor of the beautiful design Hotel Tomtom Suites – The Best of Small Luxury Hotel in Istanbul.

When arriving, I was welcomed by the young restaurant manager and I suppose he didn’t know how to handle that a woman was dining alone. So he gave me a very sweet compliment that I’m too pretty to eat alone.

They had given me the prime table in the restaurant … at first I felt I was misplaced, but after a couple of minutes sitting at the table I enjoyed it and the view was just stunning. I had Istanbul in in all its amazing lights by my feet.nicole-fahrigediz com

After being served my vodka & tonic was it time to look at their two menus and I decided to go for the “Nicole” menu, because I wanted to try the Beef Cheek.

Menu Nicole
WELCOME amuse-bouches
STEAK TATARE salmon roe, dill
SHRIMP carrots, tangerine
RED MULLET fennel, saffron
CAULIFLOWER hazelnut, parsley
QUAIL & DUCK PIE red cabbage, rosehip
SMOKED BEEF CHEEK green lentils, leek

They are also offering pairing wines with their menu, but with the evening before at “Gile” and how “happy” I was leaving – to get a new glass of wine with every course felt very dangerous.

The restaurant manager said he would choose suitable wines for me – I wish I had written down the name of the wines, they were absolutely superb and I didn’t save the bill.

Every dish that was put in front of me was so beautiful presented and so the flavor was so settled and well combined. Everything was in perfect harmony.nicole - theguideistanbul com

My senses really liked everything that was served – Cauliflower with hazelnuts, another dainty combination.

The Quail & Duck Pie was just utterly superb – not a pie person, mostly because of the pastry, but this pastry was just melting in my mouth.

Never eaten Beef Cheek before, slightly smoked – what a wonderful piece of meat so tender and it was a very mild dish – nothing overpowering there and I love lentils, a such a well-balanced dish.

Then it was time for the “Sweet Endings” – and I had the honor to meet Aylin, the pudding girl. *smile – to make my Christmas Eve special she served me a glass of Kir Royal on the behalf of the restaurant together with her Beetroot sorbet with Ginger Cream.

That sorbet I was one of the best things I ever eat …. I could have a big bowl of it for breakfast the following morning. That was just “heavenly”- when that ginger flavor kicked in.Nicole dish - theguideistanbul com

I got 3 desserts, if I include the sorbet, my second sweet ending was Pomelo, pink grapfruit, clementine, orange and Dilek Alble cake…. The last was another exquisite surprise; warm and chilled chocolate mousse.

Aylin told me that she has only been a Chef Pâtissie for 10 years and are schooled in Paris. She started when she was 37 and she just loves her job. That was so noticeable in her work too – full of passion.

She is married to Kaan, Chef de Cuisine, what powerful couple and so very talent.

To sum up my evening at “Nicole” – SIMPLY THE BEST, but there was one little thing that annoyed me and that was that my first dish was presented before I had finished my pre-dinner drink. Even the sun has spots. So many restaurants make that little mistake – so Nicole is in very good company.nicole - evening view - nicole.facebook

The bill came to 350Lira/152$/£100/129€/1220SEK include little extra tip (the restaurant adds service to the bill – which I like) – and I departed very happily from my money.

It’s going to be very difficult for another restaurant (anywhere) to beat that experience, but we will see what Hong Kong and Japan can come up with in April.

“People who love to eat are always the best people”
Julia Childtomtom suites - lac.visaluxuryhotels com

Images provided by and thanks to:
Gallery 1; nicole-facebook/theguideistanbul.com/hotspots-mekanist.net
Gallery 2; nicole-facebook/tripadvisor.com/timeoutistanbul.com
Gallery 3; thehedonista.com/tripadvisor.com/theguideistanbul.com/tripadvisor.co.uk

15 thoughts on “a table with a view and a kitchen filled with love

  1. Not the cheapest meal but it all looked delightful. I wish you had named all the dishes in your pictures, it would be nice to know what was what. What a wonderful way to spend Christmas.

    • Jo, I know … but it’s only Christmas once per year, so I had my spending pants on 2 nights.
      It’s not my images. I use professional images for my reviews. A bad image can give the wrong impression of a great dish.
      I try to use the restaurants own images if possible.
      I don’t have a clue what the dishes are … on images. I only had the small canapes and the warm chocolate mousse with the chilled white. Best Christmas I had for years. Jo, thanks for your lovely comment

    • DIA, it’s a fantastic restaurant – Istanbul has quite a few of top class places – so there are so many left to enjoy!
      Going back in the beginning of June – and then there will be more eating adventure. But I couldn’t eat food like this every day.

  2. Heaven’s above! I’m full and I never ate a morsel 🙂 🙂
    There I sat with my choice of glasses, just gazing at the view. I forgot to eat! 🙂
    Hope you’re having fun planning Japan, Vivi. And that you’re well?

    • Hugs ….. today for breakfast have I experienced both snow fall and thunder???????!!!!!!!!
      The portions were not that big – so you would manage it all – and the view is fantastic, but the food would be fantastic even in a basement.
      Yes, my Japan trip is getting – working on a blog update just now.

    • Sylvia, the food would be fantastic in a basement too.
      Lovely evening, but I couldn’t eat food like this every day – but a couple of times per year during my travel. *smile

  3. What a fabulous meal – I like the sound of the beef cheek and lentils and as for the desserts, well, I’ve always been a pudding girl! Wonderful views to go with a wonderful experience.

    • Suzanne, once in a while I love to go for that little extra and both the times in Istanbul – so fantastic meals and experiences. There is quite many restaurants in Istanbul with great views and quite a few is top scored restaurants.

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