Sunday, July 17, 2011

Bagarasi - Good Food in a Pastoral Setting

This is a family establishment that is run by Ummuhan and Ismail Girgin.  It is best to arrive for the first time with someone who knows the area well since, the restaurant is situated, discreetly, by a quaint cottage in the middle of tangerine groves.  Reservations are a must; they have only about 8-10 tables and will only take one reservation for the evening.  Ummuhan hanim has won awards with her innovative approach to traditional Mediterranean and local dishes like her leeks in olive oil cooked with plums and "Kitir Manti" (Crunchy Turkish Ravioli).  There is a wonderful array of mezes consisting of the freshest of the local herbs and vegetables.  Last year, when we could find the fortitude to go on to the main meal after the delicious mezes, we had tried and loved her "Kofte" (Turkish meatballs) and lamb chops; this year I tried the sea-bass grilled in salt and thought it was excellent.

Everything about this place is magical from the bucolic atmosphere to the nostalgic Turkish music they play to the husband and wife team that treat each and every one of their customers like old friends.  I was especially thrilled when I ran into them at the Ortakent Bazaar where they were loading up on fresh vegetables; it was a  wonderful moment of connecting over love of local flavors.

Bagarasi Restaurant
Pinarli Caddesi No: 59
Bitez - BODRUM
Tel:  0252 363 7693
        0555 260 6251
    0535 686 9690

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