Never underestimate the cultural significance of Turkish tea & Turkish coffee ;
Not only Turks are the fifth largest producers of tea worldwide; they are also the planet’s top consumers per capita. It is brewed very strong, then mixed with hot water and served in a slim-waisted, elegantly curved glass.
We always want to serve you tea or coffee to make you feel comfortable ; in our way, we want to express a warm and amicable “welcome”.
Shopkeepers, business people, bankers, families often offer guests or customers a Turkish tea, as a sign of friendship and hospitality.
Our first stop is Hazzopulo Passage, inaugurated in the late 19th century, it is an old meeting point where the intellectual crowd used to get together to share ideas. This is the place where you will taste Turkish coffee & tea revisited in the Byzantine way.
Pattiserie de Pera
After that, we will pass through the rear gate of the passage and walk to the ‘Pattiserie de Pera’. This time you will experience a habit that was once fashionable; afternoon tea with live piano music in a magical atmosphere. Imagine yourself in a hall with domes, embroidery on the walls and giant windows which reflect the hotel’s legendary grandiosity while sipping a classical Turkish tea.
Finally we are moving to a newer and trendier habit; a third wave coffee shops which are taking roots in Istanbul’s coffee culture by the end of 2011 and become a serious competitor to the former Turkish Coffee tradition. We will invite you to scent these new and readapted aromas.
We begin our tour with an authentic tea house located just a few meters away from Dolmabahce Palace, right on the shores of the Bosphorus. This latter is one of the most surprising things about Istanbul; you don’t need to be weatlhy to enjoy the breathtaking view, you can sit at a humble tea house and watch the boats making their way along the Bosphorus while you delicately drink your tea.
Dolmabahce Tea House
From the dock next to Dolmabahce Tea House, you will jump on a ferry and cross the Bosphorus to reach the Asian side. While sailing, you will have 20 minutes to feed the gulls with ‘simit’ – yes the gulls are vegetarian in Istanbul and prefer the Tukish bagel called ‘simit’ instead of fresh fish ! So it is a tradition to share your bagel with gulls while enjoying a freshly brewed tea during the cruise.
Once you arrive at Kadikoy, which is considered as the biggest and oldest neighbourhoods of the Asian side of Istanbul, you will walk through the fish market and reach the authentic coffee shops which prepare the Turkish coffee at the most traditional way ;in copper pots and on wood fire. We will let you savour this gustatory experience in this trendy & popular area.