Motif Restaurant – Tastes Of Turkey Along Çalış Beach

If you’re someone who knows the Fethiye restaurant scene pretty well, then restaurateurs Nichola and Doğan probably need no introduction. If you’re not familiar with the restaurant scene in our little corner of Turkey, we often write reviews of local bars and eateries. And this article is no exception. This is our review of Nichola and Doğan’s latest venture, Motif Restaurant, along Çalış Beach…

Motif Restaurant, Çalış Beach

Motif Restaurant is along Çalış Beach

Motif Restaurant, Çalış Beach

Opened in the spring of 2019 by Nichola and Doğan, Motif Restaurant was on the immediate radar of local diners. If you’ve run a successful restaurant in the past and then you announce a return with the upcoming opening of Motif Restaurant, you’ve already got a bunch of eager, hungry customers on your hands!

We class ourselves as two of those eager, hungry customers. As with any new restaurant opening, however, we resisted for a short while and gave the team a bit of ‘settling in’ time before we went to sample some of the dishes from the tempting menu.

Rear Garden Area

Motif Restaurant has a relaxed, sheltered area to the rear

Sheltered Garden

Çalış Beach is famous for its welcome, cooling breezes in the summer months. On the day we were at Motif Restaurant, it was springtime, it was sunny but the ‘welcome cooling breeze’ blowing straight off the sea was nothing but a cold wind.

We had the option to sit inside but photos on the Motif Restaurant Facebook page had shown us that there was a sheltered, decked garden area to the rear. No cold winds down here! Just pleasant sunshine and a choice of contemporary and traditional seating. The köşk looked tempting but we kept life simple and opted for a dining table.

Let’s Eat!

Time to peruse the menu and prepare the tastebuds for some flavours of Turkey!

Meze Selections

There’s a large meze choice at Motif Restaurant

Because that’s what people are so happy about with the arrival of Motif Restaurant in this area. It’s a restaurant specialising in Turkish cuisine. And a good number of the dishes on offer are ones you won’t see elsewhere in restaurants along the Çalış Beach promenade.

Motif Restaurant’s tagline is ‘Anadolu Lezzetleri – Traditional Tastes of Turkey’ and the menu has a mix of regional dishes, dishes from the Ottoman kitchen and a good sprinkling of familiar Turkish favourites, too.

We decided to start our meal with some meze choices. Falafel, Gavurdağı Salatası and an aubergine salad. Gavurdağı Salatası – a salad dish from the Gaziantep area of Turkey – is a favourite of mine and this one didn’t disappoint. Especially with some of that lovely bread torn apart and dipped into the juices!

The Big Event

And then the time came for our main meals to arrive. Three diners, three different meals. Well, no point in all ordering the same thing is there? Especially when there is so much to choose from on the menu.

Hatay Flavours

For me, flavours from the Hatay region in Turkey’s southeast.

Motif Restaurant Şato Piliç

Şato piliç is an old favourite of mine

Şato piliç. A large pate of minced chicken stuffed with cheese and pistachio nuts. Chargrilled pepper, tomato and onion. A fresh onion and parsley salad tossed in zesty sumac, tomato bulgur pilaf and a dip of yoghurt and aubergine. Oh, and let’s not forget all those leaves of lavaş bread covered in a light red pepper paste.

Flavours From The Ottoman Kitchen

There was a short discussion regarding this choice of lamb mutancana. Both Barry and I were keen to try it. As I was already torn between this and my eventual choice, I was happy, on this occasion, to sample some of Barry’s when it arrived. Purely for purposes of this article, of course. How can I tell you what food tastes like if I don’t taste it – and photograph it?

Lamb Mutancana At Motif Restaurant

Supremely tender lamb in the lamb mutancana

We’ve been told in the past that the chef at Motif Restaurant is rather particular when it comes to preparing his lamb meat before it’s cooked. Whatever his methods are, what is served to your table is chunks of the most juicy tender lamb. And for this particular Ottoman dish, flavours of the Middle East come into play – bite-sized pieces of succulent lamb are served in a stew with dried fruits, honey and almonds.

If meat dishes with fruit are your thing, this lamb mutancana is a must-try when you go to Motif Restaurant.

Flavours From The Sea

Barry’s mum was with us and she opted for some flavours of the sea with a fish casserole.

Seafood At Motif Restaurant, Çalış

Big juicy chunks of ‘akya’

Served with a side salad and potato wedges, the Mediterranean fish casserole is packed with juicy chunks of ‘akya.’ Amberjack fish or leer fish is a steak-like fish when cooked so it’s perfect for dishes like this and şiş kebabs (also on the menu).

Motif Restaurant & Eyna Hotel

And Motif Restaurant isn’t just a restaurant. As with those other creators of quality kebabs and Turkish dishes in the Çalış area, Babzen Kebab, there are also rooms available at Motif Restaurant.

Eyna Hotel Çalış Beach

Eyna Hotel has rooms with views over the sea at Çalış

Of course we wanted to have a mooch around one of the rooms. This is the first floor room with balcony offering vistas of the Mediterranean and the beach below, through the trees. Not a bad place to sit with your morning brew!

Back To Motif Restaurant

So, if you need a place to lay your head while staying in Çalış, there’s an option for you. But let’s get back to the restaurant side of proceedings…

Motif Restaurant, Çalış Beach

Comfy seating areas at Motif Restaurant

Once you’ve had your fill of all that lovely food, there’s a couple of places where you can relax at Motif Restaurant. As they’re gaining as much of a reputation for their inventive infused gins as they are for their food, you might want to sit back and enjoy a beverage or two whilst you’re there.

We completely forgot about the gin offerings when we were there so we now have a perfect excuse to go back to Motif Restaurant soon and sample more of the menu…and the gin!

Motif Restaurant & Eyna Hotel – Useful Information

  • Motif Restaurant is along Çalış Beach, Fethiye.
  • The kitchen is open for food from 12 midday to 10pm. You can’t reserve seating at the restaurant so you might need to wait for a table on busy evenings.
  • As well as a full menu available all day, there is also a daytime snack menu with wraps, burgers, salads etc.
  • For people with a sweet tooth, there is also a range of desserts on offer.
  • Foods suitable for vegans and vegetarians are highlighted on the restaurant Facebook page.
  • You can keep yourself up to date with goings on at Motif Restaurant by liking their Facebook page.
  • For other ideas about where to feed and water yourself around the area, here’s a list of some of the places to eat and drink in the Fethiye area.

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Comments

  1. Sarah (instagram Saraianz) says

    OMG, thanks so much for this review! I may have found where to have my birthday dinner in September!
    I’m so excited to be returning to Turkey and Fethiye!

  2. Derrick Hargreaves says

    went there a few days ago. really impressed by the unusual menu and by the finished product served.

  3. Emma Chavez says

    I wish I could just wish myself there (like “I Dream of Jeannie” show from the 1970s. The ocean looks so inviting! The dishes look scrumptious! Can you get the recipes?

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