What To Drink In Istanbul: A Comprehensive Guide To Drinks In Istanbul

There are many drinks that you can try in Istanbul whether with alcohol or not, whether they are hot or cold. Amongst the hot drinks, black tea and Turkish coffee are the most famous ones. Turkish people drink black tea starting from the early morning alongside their breakfast and continue drinking it throughout the day. The black tea is offered immediately when you are visiting a place such as a shop or even a bank. However, Turks do not drink their tea with milk as the English tend to do. Therefore, you can only find tea with milk in some restaurants and not anywhere else. Turkish coffee, on the other hand, is drunk after meals, typically once a day. It is similar to espresso shot in the sense that it comes in small cups. 

Turkish coffee is dark and bitter, and while drinking, you should keep in mind that you are not supposed to drink till the very end as the coffee grounds accumulate at the bottom.

There are two distinct and unique cold drinks that belong to the Turks. Ayran is a drink made by mixing yoghurt, water and a pinch of salt. For many tourists, it is a different experience to drink something salty, however, for the Turkish people, Ayran is very much loved and drunk alongside meals. Another cold drink is Boza which is fermented bulgur mixed with water and some sugar. Boza is a relatively sour drink due to its fermented nature however, it is again very much loved. Vefa Bozacısı is the oldest place in Istanbul that makes the best boza if you are curious.

When it comes to alcoholic beverages, Rakı is unique to the Turks. It is a

strong drink that is usually consumed by mixing it with water which gives the drink a white look almost similar to milk. Rakı is usually consumed alongside fish by the Turkish people. After the rakı, beer and wine are the most preferred alcoholic beverages in Turkey. The local beer brand that is mostly sold in Turkey is Efes Pilsen which comes in small and big sizes. The wine industry, on the other hand, is an improved one due to local wineries where you can try different, locally made wines.

You should keep in mind that not every cafe or restaurant in Istanbul offers alcoholic beverages if you would like to try them. On the other hand, you can find Turkish black tea and Turkish coffee as well as ayran almost anywhere in Istanbul at any time of the day.


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