This restaurant is in a village close to Mudanya. I can tell from the crowd that we have seen over there that it's very famous and popular amongst the locals. I enjoyed the special pide so much and the dessert which was also a sort of pide (tahinli) with molasses and sesame oil. The prices are reasonable and service is very fast. It's a bit difficult to reach the restaurant if you don't have a car, but it's worth trying the delicious pide specialties here.
Favorite Dish: Special pide and tahinli pide
Mavi Boncuk is a guesthouse in Cumalikizik village. You can have a mouth watering brunch here in authentic style in the garden. The semaver which you can brew your own tea is very interesting. You can enjoy homemade jams and other local products in your brunch. Do not forget to ask for some extra gözleme. This guesthouse operates all year long and you can have your brunch indoors too.
Favorite Dish: Brunch with gözleme
I am a big fan of Iskender kebab and I would have sinned if I didn't try it in Bursa where it originally came from. There are many famous places in the city center where you can try it. However, those restaurants are likely to charge you at least twice what you will pay here. I tasted Iskender kebab in many restaurants and this wasn't the best, but for visitors with budget concerns can try Melike Döner. This restaurant also holds the biggest döner kebab record with 2698 kg. It's hard to imagine, but it's true. Of course, you can taste döner kebab instead of Iskender too. I suggest you try sira (pronounced as shira) which is soft drink prepared from grapes to accompany your meal.
Favorite Dish: Iskender kebab
The countryside and villages up the lower slopes of Uludag above the city of Bursa have numerous nice places to eat. One might not expect it, but this rural, thickly forested area has many very nice restaurants with garden terrace seating among shady trees on nice patios, sometimes with views over Bursa itself.
We went to two different ones. One was Tarihi Cinar ("The Historic Plane Tree"), so named because its centrepiece is an ancient, huge sycamore/plane tree (see pictures). The other one we went to was very similar, also nice and had great views and food, but I can't remember the name.
Favorite Dish: Et mangal (grilled meat) is common among these restaurants, and is indeed a common genre of dishes advertised at restaurants in the Turkish countryside in general. One can order the various types of meat and meze, etc., that one desires and grill it right at one's own table on a barbecue under the trees while sipping beer or tea and eating meze. One place, Tarihi Cinar ("The Historical Plane Tree") has a large patio dining area with a stream under a truly massive 600-year old cinar/plane tree. Another at which we ate had a little fountain and stream with water trickling down the rock face in the cliff.
Everywhere you go in Turkey you will find one, if not many, kebab houses. In England these are a delight after a night out on the town, where the large doner is king.
In Turkey they are a veritable feast of fast food and the various ways of having a kebab is sometimes mind blowing, although there are usually plenty of pictures that you can point at to ensure that you get what you want off the menu.
I suppose you can liken a kebab shop in Turkey to a coffee shop in Italy. A simply must do part of the trip.
Favorite Dish: Most lamb kebabs with rice, although the wraps are also excellent. Also chicken is sometimes on the skewer.
Iskander is named after Alexander the Great, but that's where the connection ends. Turkish Iskander is famous and its origins are from Bursa. There are copious restaurants in the area that make it, and a visit would not be complete if you did not sample it.
Favorite Dish: Iskander - slight variations on the general theme. Thinly sliced spiced beef, served on a bed of chopped baked bread, smothered with a tomato sauce and hot butter. Usually has some peppers and yogurt on the side. Simply delicious!!
The old city is on a steep cliff - not a good sign, usually means earth quakes - , called Hisar. At the foot of it runs a small street lined with restaurants. We think they're all family of each other. We ate at one of them Arap Sükrü. Fresh fish is on display and they do not wrong with it. Also good mezze's.
Kalecik serves in a traditional two storey Bursa house with a garden, in the center of the citadel (Tophane / Hisar). Guest are able to have meals from both world and ottoman cuisine. This small and modest restaurant plays music genres of jazz, nujazz, lounge, chill out and world music.
Favorite Dish: Kalecik Han Kebab
It is best to do in the summer and sit outside, but indoor seats are also available in cold periods. The fresh local foods, the clean mountain air and the vistas are wonderful.
I was able to order on occasion my myself, but if you have a local Turk go with you, it will be to your advantage. Many times there are no menus, and simply have to choose from the verbal list given by the staff.
Favorite Dish: All food is good! Its local, which means a lot of meats from the grill and other dishes with a similar Mediterranean flavor.
Visiting Bursa without tasting its most famous speciality - Iskender Kebap - would be sacrilege. Iskender or Bursa kebap is doner kebap (meat roasted on revolving vertical spit) sliced thinly and laid out on chunks of pide (local pizza) bread and covered with specially created tomato souce and melted butter. It's like biting into heart attack itself, but it's all worth it (that is if you survive).
If you want to go for the 'authentic' Bursa kebap, head to Iskender Kebapci who claims to have invented this cholesterol friendly dish. They have a small, cozy, blue-and-white branch along Ataturk Cad near the tourist office, which I think is open during lunch hours only. Iskender's main branch is along Unlu Cad, a pedestrianized street at the tip of Ataturk Cad.
Favorite Dish: Bursa's famous speciality, Iskender kebap.
I have this feeling that Mahfel Mado is the focal point of Bursa's lively café culture. It's a gathering place for yuppies, students, academics, business people, and curious tourists like myself. More than a great place to people watch, the chocolate ice cream here is not bad at all.
Iskender kebap is one of the most famous meat foods of Northwestern Turkey and takes its name from its inventor, Iskender Efendi, who lived in Bursa in the late 19th century.
It is a kind of döner kebab prepared from thinly cut grilled lamb basted with tomato sauce over pieces of pide bread and generously slathered with melted butter and yogurt. Additionally, one cylindrical meatball can be placed on top. It is commonly consumed with sira as a drink to aid digestion. Tomato sauce and boiling butter are sometimes poured over the dish, at the table.
This explanation is from Wikipedia..But just one word for Iskender is DELICIOUS!!
Ulus Pastanesi (Patisserie) is one of the oldest patisserie of Bursa. Oztat family is running this family business. They are in confectionery business since their grand-grand father Ismail Bey. This shop was first opened in 1928 and it is serving on the same address since 1960. If you are interested in discovering such places do not hesitate to stop by this shop which is on the city center just near by the Ulucami.
Favorite Dish: They are producing a special jam made of "anjelik" herb which is only found in Bursa. You can taste this jam only in Ulus Patisserie.
They produce their own chestnut candy and rock candy which is good to carry with you during travels.
I strongly advice yo to visit Cumalikizik Village, if you come to Bursa. This old Ottoman Village at only 10 km east of Bursa keeps its old houses and life style unchanged for almost 600 hundred years. So, you can feel how the rural life was many years ago.
The village became well-known after film makers discovered here to shoot films. Many visitors from all over the country comes to village on the weekends to see the places where their favorite films were shot. The villagers sell hand-crats and local food.
It is a good idea to come to the village and have breakfast one of the very many houses which serve food. My favorite place is Mrs. Sema's place. They offer a rich classical rural breakfast. The family who runs this place is very genial. They have a little nice garden at the back.
Favorite Dish: zeytinyagli yaprak sarma (stuffed grape leavs cooked with olive oil)
Sehir Lokantasi is a place where many local tradesmen around the city center have their lunch since 1975. They cook delicious local food. It . Entering to this restaurant gives the feeling of travelling back to 20-30 years before since its decoration, service style and nothing seems to be changed since many years. Credit card is not accepted. It is not a touristic place, but for those visitors who would like to try such places it is a good option. They give small presents to children and young people such as baloons and chewing gums.
Favorite Dish: milk halva