12:00pm - 9:00pm
135 Enmore Road Enmore 2042


dine at the bar
late night dining
reservations recommended
good date place
notable wine list
Middle Eastern

The façade of Stanbuli still has the salmon-coloured paint and signage from a 1950s hair salon, but inside it’s beautifully tiled and decorated. It looks like a mix between a traditional bathhouse and charming a Mediterranean bar.

It’s by Ibrahim Kasif, a ex-Porteño chef (who’s joined in the business by Porteño’s Joe Valore and Elvis Abrahanowicz) who wanted to get back to his roots. The venue is a meyhane, the equivalent of a tavern or tapas bar.

The first page of the menu is dedicated to raki mezesi, or mixed plates to have with the aniseed-infused Turkish liquor. These include melon, cheese, olives and cured meats. The stuffed mussels are packed with olive-oil-heavy rice fragrant from a pepper and allspice infusion. The pastirma (Turkish cured beef) is made in-house with chilli, garlic, fenugreek and cumin, then air-dried for several weeks.

For longer evenings mix some Turkish beers and wines with a long list of meze plates and charcoal meats. One thing you’re unlikely to find anywhere else in Sydney is the charcoal roasted seftali, a Cypriot-Turk-style lamb and beef kofte wrapped in caul fat (the membrane that surrounds the stomach). The meze ranges from savoury tomato-braised flat beans and smoky eggplant with cucumber and sumac, to pickled octopus and lamb brains with purslane, yoghurt and charcoal grilled olives.