There is no perfect visit to this fascinating region if you don't take the time to try its fabulous food, and "Areni Cappadocia," in the heart of the enchanting town of Ürgüp, is the ideal place.
Traditional Anatolian Cuisine, perfectly combining seasonal ingredients that successfully achieve an explosion of flavours in your mouth and spirit.
Like in the ancient Ottoman Cuisine, fresh fruits quince, plum, apple and apricot, spices such as cinnamon, ginger, clove or saffron, dried fruits, like raisins, almonds, peanuts and walnuts blend to enhance the essence of the food.
It's Saturday night; the weather is ideal for dining outside and "Areni Cappadocia" with its beautiful terrace and privileged view, welcomed the commensals with open arms. The service is kind and attentive, and the food sets the mood: Full pleasure.
The menu may seem unknown for foreign eyes; however, "Areni Cappadocia," besides the great food, has a spectacular service.
Waiters will guide you through this dining experience with much sympathy and expertise of their Food & Beverage offerings. Their courteous and personal attention makes all the guests feel unique and valued.
The starters are a selection of dishes based mostly on fresh veggies, combined with cheese, grains, leaves, bathed on the citric sauces, the fusion is impressive, and the results astonishing. Other choices are fresh-baked pastries.
Examples of starters include stuffed artichokes with a cinnamon hint that intensifies the dish's taste or baked mushrooms with eggplant and cheese.
Borek is a baked pastry filled with ground beef, carrot, cinnamon and mint, heavenly delicacies.
"Areni Cappadocia" also has a starters' special, based on meats (lamb, veal, tenderloin or chicken) combined with fresh vegetables, fruits, grains and honey, cooked with style and perfect harmony.
Some examples are the "Testi Kebab," a slow-cooked beef in a tandoor and "Izgara Köfte," grilled meatballs, sauteed vegetables and firik rice.
The variety of main courses is peculiar: grilled beef tongue, tender beets infused with a citric-flavoured, red onion and liver; beef bacon on a vine leaf, among others. Whatever your choice is, you will be delightfully enchanted.
A valuable characteristic of this traditional restaurant is that meals are for sharing; therefore, all the people assembled can savour the different dishes that come to the table.
Another alternative is Areni's homemade pasta selection, an authentic delicatessen. The highlight is the famous "manti," a type of dumpling (popular in most of the Anatolian Region) filled with meat or aubergine and served with yogurt sauce. A real pleasure to the palate.
All these mouth-watering dishes are a perfect match for a seasonal salad that will fascinate your appetite with the intense flavour of their simplicity.
Since this will be an unforgettable life experience, a nice dessert is an excellent way to conclude the night. The table's spotlight will be the famous baklava, sweet dessert pastry made of layers of filo filled with delicious apples and walnuts.
"Areni Cappadocia" is located in a region with a chilly and beautiful winter; however, the indoor seating area is perfect for warm, quiet and peaceful moments.
What drives this team is their commitment to deliver a truly unique dining experience. From the moment you enter the restaurant, you can feel the genuine vibes that float in the ambiance.
All their products are fresh and collected from the near villages or the local farmers market from different towns in Ürgüp and surrounding areas.
The place is spotless; sanitation is above the standard.
"Areni Cappadocia" has a good wine selection from the local winery and the most quality Turkish national alcohol, Raki.
The prices are reasonable, dinner for two people start at 35 euro (drinks not included)
Reservations are highly recommendable since it is one of the most popular restaurants in town.
Guests are welcome to visit the kitchen and any area behind the scene.
"Areni Cappadocia" represents the savoury Turkish culture and its unique identity. The whole experience will be one of the most memorable days of your journey.