Being one of the most cosmopolitan cities in Turkey, Istanbul is filled with cultural variety when it comes to the service industry. One of the most prominent examples of such establishments is the various concept cafés in the city with a range that extends from cosy to borderline kitsch. While some of them are inspired by local elements, others are based on more global concepts, but all of them are offering a unique experience and a strong atmosphere.
Here are 6 of these concepts cafés in Istanbul that we think would be totally worth your while to visit.
Café Naftalin K.
First on the list is a place that will take you back in time. An extension of a very old antique and vintage shop in Balat called Naftalin Antique Shop, Naftalin K. is situated right across the street with the same design elements that would make an antique shop magical. All decorations, as well as furniture, are vintage and antique. The name Naftalin itself means mothball, which is used to protect antiques. The cosy café is home to many cats, fed by the lovely couple who own the place. The “K.” in the café’s name comes from various Turkish words that the owners hold dear to and coincidentally starts with a K, such as kedi, kitap, kahve, Kafka (cat, book, coffee, Kafka respectively).
Walter’s Coffee Roastery
Here’s a prime example of a concept café with an original and global idea: this coffee shop is based on the famous TV series Breaking Bad. The whole place is adorned with conceptual elements from the hit show, with a brewery space that looks like a chemistry lab, baristas with iconic yellow protective lab suits from the show, and test tubes instead of coffee mugs.
You can get a detailed view and info about Walter’s Coffee Roastery by clicking the below link:https://walterscoffee.com/
Minoa Books & Coffee
A place out of fantastic novels, Minoa is covered with books all around on its multiple floors. The coffee shop is filled with both new and old books of all genres, as well as comic books. You can enjoy your coffee while reading different books and choosing your favourites to purchase; it is worth noting that there are many books in English and other languages also.
You can check the details of Minoa Books & Coffee via the below link: https://minoa.com/en/
Mendel’s Café & Chocolatier
Mendel’s has a very unique and heartwarming story. Coming from a long line of dessert chefs, cousins Atahan and Emre are from the south-eastern town Mardin. One day, while going through their grandfather’s recipe book, they find a photograph of their grandfather alongside a foreigner, the photo is signed: “to my friend. Mendel”. Taking this souvenir and sentiment to the heart, they create Mendel’s Café & Chocolatier with their family recipes. The cosy coffee shop is a wonderful place to enjoy some unique chocolate desserts and delicious coffee.
You can check Mendel’s Café & Chocolatier and find out more about it by clicking the below link: https://mendels.com.tr
POW! is heaven for comic book enthusiasts. Mainly a comic book and action figure shop with an extensive range of products that includes books in multiple languages, the place also has a bakery and coffee shop. You can have a wonderful time while reading comics and enjoying the delicacies if you’re a fan of the comics world.
You can visit POW!’s website to see their inventory as well as other detailed info about the shop: https://shop.pow.com.tr/
Living Karma Café & Juice Bar
As a healthy food and beverage focused concept café, Living Karma serves delicacies with all-natural ingredients as well as unique juice mixes. So much so that they grow their own vegetables in the garden and exclusively use them to make various fresh drinks and food. There’s also a shopping section in the café with unique accessories and ornaments that go along with the nature concept.
Frequently asked questions
What is the most convenient transport within Istanbul to see all coffee shops and rest of the attractions?
Booking from a private transfer company would be the most comfortable way to travel within Istanbul and see all attractions. You can also book one of the private tours: Full-Day Sightseeing, Half-Day Sightseeing, and Sightseeing at Night in Istanbul, which will allow you to travel with ease, let you pick your own destinations, and follow the most convenient route between attractions.
What airport would be the best to see the coffee shops and attractions?
While most of these coffee shops are on the European side of Istanbul and the closest airport is Istanbul Airport, you can easily reach them from Sabiha Gokcen Airport by using a private transfer service.