In recent years this former fishing village and surrounding area has been transformed into an opulent destination for the rich and famous. The restaurants below create a link back to that maritime past, taking advantage of the excellent fresh local fish and seafood ingredients and producing world class dishes served stunning locations.
Located in a lush setting filled with bougainvillea and mimosa in the quieter waterfront village of Gümüşlük, Mimoza is a fish restaurant where dining is an art form. Their famous Turkish meze (tapas- like gourmet recipes that go best with raki), seafood and fish dishes are phenomenal. A perennial favourite for all visitors to Bodrum, booking your table in advance is a must. mimozagumusluk.com
There are many fish and seafood restaurants around the peninsula but Kabuk is one of a rare breed in Bodrum. Located on the picturesque Tilkicik Bay, this little gem of a restaurant, designed by its owner and interior designer Özlem Arıkman as a cosy summer terrace, serves dishes made exclusively with crustaceans. Lobster Bisque Soup, Squid Stew, Tagliatelle ai Frutti di Mare, Bouillabaisse, Black Cuttlefish Risotto, Paella and the venue’s signature Kabuk Full House are all recommended dishes. Enjoy the delectable specialities while listening to romantic jazz tunes on a warm summer evening. kabukrestaurant.com
Memedof in the Bodrum Marina has been a local favourite since its opening in 2002. The second branch, Yalıkavak, which opened in 2007, has the perfect seafront location. Both venues are laid-back and casual, but famous for their food and service. They make mezes with fresh local herbs, seabass with artichoke and delicious seafood, especially crustaceans. Book in advance for sunset to ensure an unforgettable view. www.memedof.com
Orfoz is a small establishment with only 42 seats and an impromptu tasting menu featuring the freshest crustaceans along with wine pairing recommendations for each dish. Smoked eel, blue crab, mussels baked in Café de Paris sauce, oysters on the half-shell – you’ll get whatever heavenly delicacy the chef decides to cook up in the kitchen. It’s a must-do Bodrum experience so book well in advance. orfoz.net
In the 10 years since it opened its doors in Yalıkavak, Sait has won an excellent reputation for its ambience, fresh fish dishes and unorthodox specialities such as bulgur wheat pilaf with seafood, sea water soup and grilled calamari. Now, Sait has a branch inside the Palmarina, catering to a bigger crowd in a more luxurious setting. You can enjoy unobstructed views of Yalıkavak bay at the original location, or mingle with the chic crowd at the Palmarina. www.palmarina.com.tr
Black Cod Miso at Nobu
The hottest high end restaurant chain in the world is now in Bodrum’s Palmarina, overlooking the fantastic Yalıkavak bay. With an infinity pool stretching over the sea, it is without doubt one of the most elegant venues in town. Matsuhisa’s new classics such as Black Cod Miso, New Style Salmon, Rock Shrimp, White Fish Tiradito and Matsuhisa Sashimi will be ready for you at Nobu Bodrum. Open for lunch (1-5pm) and dinner (7.30pm until midnight). www.noburestaurants.com