Lunch is a serious topic in the bustling side-streets of Sirkeci. Close to Sultanahmet, and stuck on the landward side of the the pedestrian bridge crossing over to the Eminönü ferry station, Borsa cafeteria-style trays bring new life to the lunch line.
At Borsa, meaning stock exchange, the meals may be cooked in advance, but it is fried, stewed, boiled, steamed and poached with terrifically high standards and the lokanta style foods breeze out of the door fast enough that each dish stays fresh and hot.
A lokanta is a special kind of Turkish joint which specializes in pre-made, down-home-style, soul food. Usually the fare consists of the Turkic staples like rice (pilav), beans (fasulye), and soup (çorba)… maybe accompanied by a side dish of meat-stuffed eggplant cooked in olive oil (moussaka) or grilled meat balls (köfte).
At Borsa I kept it simple with fasulye pilav, rice & beans, for lunch. For 7.5 lira I was full and satisfied and the whole experience took 20 minutes. In a city the size of Istanbul, and in a busy district so close to the Old City, restaurants are often crowded, so a lokanta can be just thing thing to move people in and out efficiently.
If you tire of busy, over-priced Sultanahmet restaurants, and you want to try some authentic work-man’s meals, jump into this queue and point at whatever looks yummy… pay, eat, and run.
- Don’t Miss: Stewed beans (and free whole-wheat bread next to the register)
- Best Perk: Fast and east
- Average Price: 10tl
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