I met a friend for lunch at “Masa” restaurant which is in “Istinye Park” (one of the newest and most beautiful mall in Istanbul) where I had a beef salad…. Under the heat you cannot eat anything else believe me. Masa is one of the happening spots for lunch since it opened. Off course when I went, due to the heat and people on vacation, it wasn’t that busy. The fun part of it ? Even in winter people sit at the terrace with the heaters so they can smoke and enjoy lunch :)

You don’t go to Turkey and not see a fortune teller. It is one of the most fun rituals, normally they read the coffee cup, but this time I went to see a lady who reads on tea leaves.

Once my lunch done, I went to see the fortune teller, who off course told me that I will get married soon. Damn if they were all right, I would be married at least 10 times, and have a dozen of kids by now… I was more worried about my present than my future. Her house was so hot that I was afraid to pass out and not be able to go to my next big appointment: “Zuma” for drinks and dinner !!!

“Zuma” is a restaurant where they serve contemporary Japanese cuisine. It has several locations in the world such as London, Hong Kong, Dubai, Miami and Istanbul… And as all the locations it is great for happy hour, and happens to be located adjacent to my hotel’s restaurant in Ortakoy (I am sure by now you understand why I always stay at Radisson Hotel)

After the Istanbul traffic, we were really happy to sit by the Bosphorus and enjoy our drinks. When we finally hit the table, we ordered some sushis and few other things. The service was great except the French speaking girl who was placing people. You know the kind who are paid to be unpleasant, who believes that because they hold the reservation book, they rule the world??? Thanks god, the waiting staff was lovely so we forgot her until we left where she didn’t even say good night. They should seriously send her to a smiling school…

The crowd was a mixture of Istanbul socialists and tourists, the food was good but honestly I don’t really get the fuzz about this restaurant. Especially when I saw the bill we received… I agree that it is a hip place and sushis are expensive, but unless you put gold on them, I don’t see any reason to pay 500 USD for five maki sushi, literally two meat skewers, five shrimps tempura and a bottle of rose….

So beside the welcoming stuff, and the price… yes it is well located, and has a good crowd. But personally I prefer to go to fish restaurant and enjoy my food and the service and not feel that I have been ripped of. Anyway my company was great again, and we continued our night in Beyoglu, at 45’lik.

“45’lik” is a bar in Beyoglu that exist for the last 15 years. It became famous with the movie “Issiz Adam” which portrays the life of those whose lives have been isolated by modern lifestyles. It is also filled with food, mothers, old songs, and love. All Turkey cried over the impossible love of the two main characters that used to meet at the 45’lik bar and listened to the old Turkish songs. This bar is still full of people who just go for the pleasure of listening old Turkish songs and have a great walk on memory lane. I remembered my childhood, and sang so loud that lost my voice :)

It is my discovery of this trip and a perfect way to finish another glorious day in Istanbul…