We'll go into more detail about the Kemeraltı area of Izmir in a later post, but if you've ever been to Istanbul, it's easy to compare the streets around Kemeraltı to a more compact version of the surrounding alleyways of Kapalı Çarşısı (the Grand Bazaar). Perfect for aimless wanderings. Not so perfect when you're on a mission to find something in particular...and the first time we visited Kemeraltı, we were on a mission to find something in particular.
We'd been told that Turkish coffee is served around here. That's obviously nothing unusual, being that we're in Turkey and all, but around Kemeraltı, they prepare a special type of Turkish coffee: Fincanda Pişen Türk Kahvesi. We've written in the past about how to make Turkish coffee using a cezve to boil the coffee. But Izmir is different. Fincanda Pişen Türk Kahvesi means 'Turkish coffee boiled in the cup' - and we were told it was a must-try.
Turkish coffee in Kemeraltı, IzmirAfter much zig-zagging through a maze of crowded streets and, on one occasion, actually ending up back where we started, we finally stumbled across the welcome sight of Ömer Usta Kahveci - a place serving the Turkish coffee prepared, heated and served in the cup. We were thirsty, a tad disorientated and grateful for the sit down.
The waiter came over and it was then that I committed a sacrilegious act. I ordered a can of Diet Coke in the emporium of a master of the preparation of Turkish coffee. I was thirsty. Barry dutifully ordered his Turkish coffee - medium sweetness (orta) and in a medium-sized cup - and we awaited its arrival expectantly. The cup, coffee inside, is placed over the coals and heated, so when it arrived it was hot!
Perfect combination - Turkish coffee and lokumSo, is the fincanda pişen Türk kahvesi any different to a normal Turkish coffee? Well, Barry's verdict is it's the best he's ever had. On sight, the coffee looked thick - almost like a rich chocolate mousse - but when you took a sip (after the cup had cooled a little) the coffee was smooth and sweet.
Not being a big lover of Turkish coffee, I had to agree with Barry. It was very drinkable and the side-serving of Turkish Delight complimented the coffee perfectly. As for the medium-sized cup, there was also a large one on offer as well as small. We'll opt for small next time - Barry was pretty wired for a couple of hours afterwards as we continued our explorations of Kemeraltı. We can only imagine the effects of a large one...
Are you a fan of Turkish coffee? Have you ever tried this Izmir version?