A delicate sensation of taste

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Delicate design – Chestnut, black rice, wrapped with hamsi anchovy fish

“When I was a child I would do complicated Turkish dishes and my mum would think I had bought the food from outside.” Chef Pınar Taşdemir

It is clear that as time passed, Pınar’s natural ability for cuisine has only increased. She now owns and operates Fumée restaurant sidled along and facing the Bosphorous currents in Kuruçeşme.

Fumée is a venue that has had a story circulated in almost every magazine.

So what is it about this restaurant that has Istanbul talking. Must be the food…? the location…?

I was invited, with four of Istanbul’s leading Turkish lifestyle/food bloggers, to explore the sophistication of Fumée’s gourmet restaurant.

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Need to show off Istanbul? Ambassadors flying in from Ankara? Company CEO’s arriving into Istanbul for meetings? Wedding anniversary? Romantic evening out?

Fumée is your key to schmooze and impress.

One must be ‘in the know’ about this restaurant. They refer to these kind of gems as ‘hidden’ or as Istanbul secrets.

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Celery root w’ passion flower, green apple & gooseberry

Find the narrow path that leads from the road to a door that will take you on a ‘sophisticated dining adventure’.

It is a journey with a delicate sensation of taste.

The word ‘delicate’ is one I identified with while enjoying Fumée. Pınar has mastered the art of delicate delectable cooking.

The menu offers light, fresh, tangy citrus flavours with gourmet ingredients and unique contrasts.

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Lamb tandoori w’ Damson plum & persian rice

But, Pınar’s ability to extend beyond the usual and perhaps redefine the art of the Turkish Mediterranean style is not an experimentation to be different nor to make a name as a chef. Pınar does it simply because the flavours work.

Flavours such as her chestnut, black rice wrapped with hamsi anchovy fish design.

A salmon that retains its deep pink and moisture like no other restaurant.

Her almond paste pastry with lavender ice-cream.

Lavender? Yes, lavender… follow my lead and place your order.

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Smoked salmon, fried zucchini patty & asparagus

Online there is only an internet homepage. This had me intrigued, like a magician not revealing how their trick is done.

I wanted desperately to know how the magician disappears behind a cloth or rather what Fumée is like beyond an internet screen page.

The venue uses the idea of ‘deep’ to convey class and style; deep purple lounge cushions, deep green plant leaves, deep grey cement flooring, lightbulbs hanging with deep red electrical cable. This is complimented with crisp white chair cushions and natural brown wood tones. Art work gives splashes of vibrant red and yellow. The result – slick lines and elite imagery.

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Green beans w’ garden sorrel sauce – peas, blackberry, hazelnuts, asparagus & sorrel leaves

And then there is the view, which itself doesn’t need any explanation or embelishment. It is what it is… incredible.

It may not be common practice in Turkey to have a female chef, especially one that controls the business and kitchen environment.

Perhaps that is why the pamphlet addresses the Fumée restaurant as a ‘she’, which is only fitting as the menu has the delicacy and design of a brave, skilled, intelligent female.

I normally offer a menu suggestion. Do you want my suggestion? Open the menu, the two pages you see… that’s my suggestion.

Written by Sheldon Heyes

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Beetroot w’ goats cheese – dill, onion chives, cress leaves & iced almonds

Fumée enjoyed its first summer this year when it opened in May 2014. (One can only imagine what it would be like dining on their open balcony during the warmer months, especially at nights when the colours of dusk hang over the view of Asia.)

The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

It is a little hidden and could be tricky to find from the street as there is no sign on the road. It is behind the Macro Centre on Muallim Nazi Caddesi No: 64 down a narrow path heading towards the Bosphorous.

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Duck confit, confit potatoes, plum sauce & green salad


Muallim Nazi Cd No: 64, Kuruçeşme, Istanbul

0212 257 02 93


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Leading lifesyle/food bloggers out in force

Cem karakus, Tat Dedektifi, Gurukafa, Lokantalarim


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About Sheldon Heyes
Lifestyle writer for Turkey - I will prepare you for Istanbul. I will show you my city. Stemming from an Australian media background I have been in Istanbul since 2012. With a foreign heart and a writer's pen I have since embraced, danced, swallowed and mumbled the Turkish culture, music, food and language. Currently - Read by thousands of passengers zooming across the globe at 38,000 feet with Turkish Airlines inflight magazine 'Skylife'. Freelance contributor at The Guide Istanbul Magazine. Online guest posts with www.yabangee.com. Freelance journalist published online at www.gallipoligames.com. And... thanks to popstar and musician Mehmet Erdem, having a bit of cultural fun and flair appearing in the Turkish video clip - 'Aşkımız Bitecek'. Past contributions - Istanbul Timeout and Home Art Istanbul magazine.

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