Best Wineries and Breweries in Istanbul

Travel Tips — By Aysegul Surenkok on June 15, 2011 at 9:39 pm

If the Turkish were to be defined by a type of alcoholic beverage, that would most likely be raki (a.k.a. Greek Ouzo, an arsenic based drink) rather than wine or beer. However, that is not to say that Istanbul lacks in wineries and breweries.

Although, there are not as many wineries and breweries as one may find in Italy, France or United Kingdom; there are a few satisfactory wine and / or beer bars.

[Image By George Chernilevsky (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons]

Corvus Wine and Bites is one of the most recent places (opened about a year ago) that serves Corvus branded wines and finger food. All wines are sold by the glass, therefore one needs not to crack open a bottle each time to taste a different wine. The finger food served are samples of Agean and Mediterranean cuisine. No reservations, walk-in. And, as such, you may have to wait a little bit for the table.

Que Tal is also one of the recently opened places in the Sishane region. It is a tapas bar and a very popular one. Que Tal does not necessarily praise itself as being a winery, however, they are serving a local and organic produce (wine).

Pano is one of the most classic wine bars in the city. It is probably in existence for over 10 years. It has a mixed aura. With its waist-high tables and regular tables (where people sit and order meze -small plates, a.k.a. tapas in the Turkish style- to the middle, it is hard to decipher whether Pano is a sophisticated bar for the intellectual crowd or more like a tavern. In either case, it continues to be very very popular. Pano is located on a side street that cuts across Istiklal Street.

[Image by Bjraki S in Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons]

Despite the few wineries mentioned here (above), breweries in Istanbul are even less. Taps is the best known brewer in the city, as it does indeed brew its own produce. The original Taps was opened in Nisantasi, however its Bebek branch looks much more popular nowadays.

There are few other “beer” bars along the Istiklal (around Nevizade). These places are not necessarily brewers, but they are known as “birahanes”s (beerhouses). Although they also serve cocktails and wine, most people who end up at a beer house, ends up there for the beer and not the wine.

Nevertheless, Istanbul should not be on your list for the upcoming October Fest, as Turkey is not primarily a wine or a beer country.

Tags: beer, Brewers, Wine, Wineries