Kayaköy Cin Bal – The Winter Experience

As regular visitors to this blog are no doubt aware, Cin Bal Restaurant in Kayaköy is one of our favourite places to eat. It’s not simply going out for a meal. Cin Bal, with its kendin pişir, kendin ye (cook it yourself, eat it yourself) approach to dining is an eating experience. Previous posts on Cin Bal have shown photos of the cool, vine-shaded gardens, Ottoman seating areas, barbecues with sizzling meats and cold meze dishes and salads. It’s a memorable way to spend a summer’s evening with a group of friends…and a guaranteed way to impress them.

But what happens in the cold, wet winter months when all of a sudden, sitting outside to laze about on cushions while the meat cooks over hot coals doesn’t seem so appealing? That’s when Cin Bal moves indoors.

Cin Bal Barbecue Restaurant, Kayaköy

You can barbecue indoors in winter at Cin Bal

Aside from the beautifully juicy and tender lamb tandir and the tempting choice of meze dishes, the whole Cin Bal experience centres around the barbecue. The owner of Cin Bal is obviously fully aware of this and so, to keep his restaurant appealing year-round, barbecue chimneys have been built at regular intervals along the outer walls of the building. A couple of brick chimneys in the middle of the room by the central fireplace make for a cosy atmosphere in what could otherwise be a stark room.

Cin Bal Kayaköy Fireplace

A real fire heats the interior of Cin Bal

If you do go to Cin Bal in winter, choose your seating wisely. Wander in and sit down aimlessly and you could find yourself cheffing for both yourself and your friends for the night. They who sit near the little arches in the wall are they who will take charge of the barbecue – unless of course none of you fancy cooking for yourself, in which case, one of the waiters will do it for you (but it’s just not the same if you do that).

Now, another reason we love to go to Cin Bal is because they hang all of their own meat. So this is just a little pointer here to vegetarians and those of you who eat meat but prefer not to think about where your meal has come from. Cin Bal are very proud of their produce and have their hanging meat on full display in a glass fridge for all to see.

Cin Bal Restaurant Lamb

All Cin Bal’s meat is on display in the restaurant

This is part of what makes it Cin Bal for us – but if that’s just not your bag, you might want to choose a seat that doesn’t leave you catching sight of all that meaty loveliness every few minutes. We don’t need to tell you where it is. You can’t miss it!

Don't miss a thing! Subscribe NOW for FREE updates straight to your inbox...

* indicates required


  1. wow…if i went there i might not ever come back. what fun!

  2. ahhhhhh.. the meats look awesome.. i m cooking lamb:)))

  3. It’s my favourite restaurant apart from the Posiedon (which I prefered when Alper ran the bar loved his music choice’s )

  4. @ Jaz: It’s a great place to while away a few hours. We’ll never get bored of going there. 🙂

    @ Yesim: Lovely meat! Mmm, jealous you’re cooking lamb now. 🙂

    @ Laurie: Thanks for your comment! Alper introduced us to some good world music which we still listen to today. A Balkan band called Beirut. Look them up if you liked his music choices. 🙂 We go to Poseidon a lot but just for a drink usually – because we eat at Cin Bal. 😉

  5. Let’s see. Cold outside. Fire inside with food cooking. Sounds perfect.

  6. Cin Bal is one of my favourite place around Fethiye, I love cooking my own lamb outside. I envy you to be able to ccok indoor their lovely meat on your very own fireplace, right at your table. I was wondering if there are a lot of smoke inside from all those fireplaces working at the same time in the winter???
    Suzanne from Montreal under -18C…

  7. Kaya Koyu Walker says

    For those of you that didn’t already know Cin Bal translates as Honey Gin (literally Cin=Gin, Bal=Honey). It’s a drink that the original owner used brew in his spare time.

  8. WOW!
    How much does a plate of all that lamby loveliness cost?

  9. @ Belinda: Sounds okay doesn’t it?! 🙂 We like it anyway.

    @ Suzanne: Glad you enjoyed it when you went. It’s great to have the barbecue right next to you. All of their barbecues are inside chimneys so there is no smoke.

    @ Kaya Koyu Walker: We’ve heard different stories about the origin of the name. We like this one, though.

    @ Vienna: Not super cheap but if you’re in a party, it works out better. Tandir is 55 lira a kilo and the pirzola (lamb chops) are around 35 lira a kilo.

  10. I loved the pictures- made me wish I could dash in and sit down to eat. I think my hubby would love this place. I’m not a big meat eater- but he loves seeing his meat, so he would love the hanging meat 🙂

  11. @ Anjuli: It’s a definite favourite for us and we like to see the meat, too. They cut bits of it off for the lamb tandir.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.