We came across this restaurant while walking through Mersin’s commercial Istiklal street. Maybe it was the crowd outside surrounding the open dessert window or maybe it was the juicy shawarma skewer rotating at the front entrance – whatever it was, we were happy we found it.
Gundogdu Iskender has been around since 1968 with several branches around Turkey, yet it retains a certain “home-y-ness” not found in other chain restaurants.
Walking in, you’re greeted by the manager who works there with his family. They welcomed us warmly into the restaurant with careful attention as we ate for if we needed anything else. We were completely satisfied – especially once we tried the food and hopelessly fell in love with their home-made Ayran yoghurt drink (below):
.. And their Iskender kebap dish! If there’s anything we missed once we returned from Turkey, it was the food we had at this place. Simply delicious! I spent a week in Istanbul and nothing I ate their ever came close to the food we had at Gundogdu Iskender. (I’m getting hungry just writing about it!) Take a look at this tasty dish:
We later found out that this recipe was originally invented by Iskender Efendi back in the 19th century. Read more about it here.
If you live in Qatar, you’re in luck! You can try it out at Iskender Kebab restaurant. If not, then you can try to make it yourself. Try out one of these two recipes and let us know if you liked it as much as we do!
* All photos on the blog are copyright of Loryne Atoui (unless otherwise stated). No illegal use without permission permitted. Kindly reference this website for any online use. *