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“Awful”
1 of 5 bubbles Review of Refik

Refik
Ranked #870 of 13,399 Restaurants in Istanbul
Cuisines: Mediterranean, Turkish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Child-friendly
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, After-hours, Reservations, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Neighbourhood: Beyoglu
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
66 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Awful”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 March 2014

We fancied on the last night of our stay, venturing into the new town for dinner and were recommended this restaurant by the hotel.
Never, have I walked out of a restaurant before, but this one - we did.
It is obviously a very popular restaurant amongst locals - the restaurant was full - but only of locals.
The service was diabolical - we were put in a corner and, i think, because were english and no-one could speak english very well, we were then ignored.
Eventually we ordered wine and three mezze dishes for starters all of which were fine, although had obviously been hanging around on the plates for a while,,,,,there were no flatbreads, only french bread - which doesn't eally go with mezze....then the 'main courses' arrived....they looked like children's meals!!!
We had ordered two chicken shish, a lamb shish and a red mullet - we expected them, as in most turkish restaurants to come with rice etc. (although we had asked for one without rice.
We were wrong...the chicken (and lamb) shish consisted of very small pieces of chicken (and lamb) that had obviously just been cooked in an oven with no marinade - certainly not grilled on skewers - and they came with three small cold potato wedges, nothing else. As for the red mullet - a largish fish - this came as a plate with 5 goldfish on it - deep fried in batter.
That was it...we asked to see the manager, offered to pay for the wine and mezze starters but said we weren't paying for the mains.
He was not happy at all, but we gave 100 lire and left.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Jo T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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129 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    45
    27
    18
    15
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Piacenza, Italy
Level Contributor
32 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Good food, but expensive”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 March 2014

I was part of a group of 10 people havong dinner at Refik. The food was really good (I had lamb chops, but friends who had fish also confirmed it). The service was quite fast and kind, the location is really pictoresque and the place itself looks like a typical restaurant, with old posters on the walls. The onl problem we had was with price: i paid 55£ for a starter, the main dish, raki and water. You can find quality food for less, in istanbul.

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank CamiCami988
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Indiana
Level Contributor
55 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Classic Lokanta”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 November 2013

With the easing of requirements to display images of the grand old man in retail locations, the current administration has given me a new rule on which to judge lokantas: don't go into one without a prominent Ataturk portrait. Refik proudly displays theirs with a great collection of ephemera from their years in business.

We were seated upstairs with a couple of other parties in an otherwise empty restaurant. Service was great, the dishes good but unremarkable lokanta fare, and the atmosphere comfortable. Leaving the restaurant afterwards, we passed through a downstairs packed with local families having a great time.

The biggest drawbacks to the Refik are slightly smaller portions, slightly elevated prices, and yabangis segregated from Turks when seated.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank almostidaho
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
48 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Just ok”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 July 2013 via mobile

Our hotel recommended Refik for dinner - really disappointing. Their is no ambiance and the food is mediocre at best. With so many places to eat in this part of Istanbul, I would skip it.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank pfk721
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
170 reviews
122 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Fabulous and Characterful Locantesi”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 July 2013

What an unpretentious but fabulous place this is. The walls are adorned with pictures and newspaper clippings re the owner and the left leaning cognoscenti of Istanbul over several decades.
The welcome is warm.
The food.......AAAAHHHHHH
We had gorgeous Meze's (especially the giant white beans, the green beans, the tarama and the hot shrimps. Then the very best place of small fish i've ever enjoyed. Baby Mackerel served a la whitebait but the most perfect, crisp and gorgeous ever. Not a gramme of fish left on the plate! Apparently the Chicken shish was excellent too!
The night improved by meeting a lovely American/Danish couple and by some of the best kahve of our trip.
Highly reccomended.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank TedHeath
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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