Submitted on: 30 Jul 08

Category: Mediterranean Cuisine,Turkish Cuisine

Restaurant Rating:

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Elena's Review:

Belkahve: A cup of tea with a little history

On a quiet evening in September 1922, Turkish commander-in-chief Mustafa Kemal Pasha stood on top of a hill in a place called Belkahve and viewed Greek-occupied Izmir. He then turned to the armies, waiting below for his orders, and, pointing to the stretch of the Aegean coast at the distance, told them to go “as far as the Mediterranean to regain Turkish lands!”

Belkahve is now a café, located approximately where this historic scene took place. In our crusade of the best eating places in Izmir and whereabouts, we found no better entry point than this.

Belkahve: The outside view

Belkahve: The outside view

First, let’s clarify a point of confusion: on the Izmir-Ankara highway, around the location of Belkahve, you may see two different signs: Belkahve and Mavi Yeşil. Don’t let this puzzle you: these are, essentially, the same eating place! We call it Belkahve because it’s a better-known and more historical name.

Belkahve is a family-friendly place with a playground for children, a summer café overlooking Izmir and an indoors restaurant. The breezy outdoors area provides an especially pleasant venue for a chat and a cup of tea. The only danger is: sometimes it’s gets too comfortable, and, coupled with soft classical music, this place can put you to sleep!

The menu offers a variety of foods: Turkish kebab, pizza, salads. Belkahve also serves a range of soft and alcoholic drinks.

However, our special recommendation for your visit to Belkahve is the famous Turkish dessert kemalpaşa tatlısı, named after no other than Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.

Kemalpasha is a dish of sweet-and-sour cheese cookies, baked for 20 minutes till they acquire a golden color and boiled in syrup. With a cup of Turkish tea, Belkahve’s kemalpaşa tatlısı is exceptional!

How to get there:

Belhahve Cafe & Restaurant

From the city center the best option is to reach by car. First follow the road till Bornova and take the Ankara direction (namely, D300 or E96); on the way to Kemalpasha you will see the 18-meter-tall statue of Atatürk and the famous Belkahve.

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