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The belly dancing is always cool to watch.
Photo Credit: guyonthego

Café Istanbul

5450 W Lovers Lane Dallas, TX 75209
Open 11-10, all week
214-902-0919 2 hours
June 2012 All year
$20-49 Dallas Texas
Website Food/Drinks Turkish Restaurants
First review
Cafe Istanbul is a popular Turkish restaurant. It was founded in the 1990s by chef and owner Erol Girgin. A second location in Plano, Texas, opened in 2003. The restaurant has a fairly diverse menu of meat and vegetable dishes. Belly dancers perform on Friday and Saturday night.

The Dallas restaurant is casual to slightly upscale. It is located in a hip shopping area that includes an independent theatre, boutique shops and specialty restaurants. Outdoor seating on the terrace is comfortable in spring or fall but gets too hot in the summer. Indoor seating can get somewhat noisy at night, especially when the belly dancers perform. Prices are slightly above average for food and drinks. Entrees typically range from $14-25. A dinner including a drink and dessert can cost $35-45. Café Istanbul has a decent selection of red and white wines, including Turkish wines. Mixed drinks also are available.

The appetizer falafel was cooked well and was appetizing. The dipping sauce added a nice flavor but the sauce portion was small. Mouthwatering baba ghanoush was excellent; none was left on the plate. Tomato and cucumber salad tasted fresh and zesty with an olive oil and lemon seasoning. For the main course, the vegetable pizza was slightly disappointing. It was lukewarm and the toppings were rather bland. However, the baklava and dry apricot desserts earned high marks. Meat entrees worth trying include hunkar begendi and bursa iskender. Aside from the taste, food presentation and appearance was appealing. Service was quick, attentive and pleasant, and the owner graciously introduced himself and made us feel welcome to stay even after we had finished the meal. Eating at Café Istanbul was enjoyable both for the food and the overall dining experience.
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