There has been a lot of buzz on Instagram about Istanbul Hawaii, a fairly new restaurant in the Kaka’ako area that serves Turkish cuisine. Located at the bottom of the Anaha Condos and across the street from Whole Foods Market, Istanbul is serving up some delicious and satisfying food.
I went for lunch with 2 friends on a Sunday, and we were delighted by the interior of the restaurant with its high ceilings and pretty decor. We were seated inside, but there was also quite a bit of outdoor seating available.
We ordered the Meze Platter which included humus, muhammara (roasted bell pepper, walnut, cinnamon, Turkish EVO), babaganush (smoked Waimanalo eggplant and black garlic), su borek (traditional filo with fresh cheese and Ma’o parsley), spanakopita, peynir and karpuz (Turkish feta, cured olives, watermelon, and aged balsamic) with pita. This is a great platter to start with if you’ve got a party of 3 or more. You can get a taste of almost all the meze on the menu, and it’s also vegetarian friendly.
2 of us ordered the Imam Bayildi, a Waimanalo eggplant topped with a Ho Farm tomato reduction, Turkish feta, extra virgin olive oil, and pomegranate seeds. It was served with a side of saffron pilav and yogurt sauce. It was delicious, and I was surprised at how filling it was.
Finally, my other friend had the lamb shish. I’m not a meat eater, but I’ve heard from other people that the lamb here is excellent. Our friend said her lamb was indeed delicious.
We each ordered a different drink, and agreed that they were all refreshing and flavorful.
Overall, the food and drinks were tasty. The service was excellent and the ambiance was beautiful and comfortable. I would definitely go to Istanbul again and highly recommend it for your next lunch date with friends.
- 1108 AUAHI ST, STE 152
Honolulu, Hawaii 96814
- Go to their website and make reservations online
- Lots of parking in the Ward parking lots (behind by Nordstrom Rack or across the street at Whole Foods)