I absolutely ADORE this photo I took of D. Not only is he one good lookin' hunka hunka burnin' love, but that glowing mosque backdrop? I die!
One of the great things about our Mediterranean cruise was that we had an overnight in Istanbul. This meant that we stayed docked at our port near Old Town and could hop off the boat at any time of the night to go out and continue exploring Istanbul. Instead of eating on the ship in the dining room for yet another night, we opted to take full advantage of the extra time in this incredible city. A big group of us, who I met through the Cruise Critic forums, decided to venture out to a restaurant that was recommend on one of our tours. It was just around the corner from where our ship was docked, so it made getting there a super easy task. After a busy day of touring, this place was just what we needed to unwind.
Fasuli Restaurant came highly recommended because of its prime location and spectacular rooftop dining views. Once we found our spot on the roof, overlooking our ship, a fun strip of hookah bars, and a breathtaking mosque, we dove into our menus to try and decipher Turkish cuisine. Almost everyone in our party ordered the meat plate that included a grilled lamb shank, grilled chicken, and some out-of-this-world Turkish meatballs that had me drooling like a rabid animal. The delicious meat selections were also served with basmati rice and some kind of mashed parsnip and potato mixture with chili sauce, which was also pretty heavenly. In addition to our meat plates, we also ordered a wide array of side dishes. D and I had the pleasure of trying a Black Sea specialty called Mihlama (also known as Kuymak), a yummy concoction of corn flour, gobs of butter, and yellow sheep's cheese. It reminded me a lot of a polenta/fondue type thing. A Turkish polenta fondue, if you will. We were dipping our bread into it by the handfuls. We also tried a bit of their famous Fasuli Fasulye (beans in a rich red gravy). I researched them after we came home and it turns out, Fasuli's beans are among the top 5 beaneries in Istanbul! What luck we have! :) After dining on some of Istanbul's traditional dishes, we made our way back to the ship for a few night caps at the Sunset Bar. While the views atop the roof of Fasuli's were great, you can't beat a cocktail and the Istanbul skyline from a beauitful ship. Friends, if you ever find yourselves docked in Istanbul, make the short walk over to Fasuli's and prepare for a feast! Tell them Casey sent you!