The First Raffles Patisserie Opens at Raffles Istanbul
Wednesday, March 09, 2016
An oasis of relaxed indulgence that reflects the new wave of contemporary sweet craftsmanship in Istanbul
Istanbul has always been a melting pot of cultures, giving rise to a brilliantly diverse food scene. This is particularly true today as the city continues to grow - vibrant, full of energy and innovation - bringing something new and exciting to the gastronomic map almost every other day.
Ever since it opened in 2014, Raffles Istanbul has perfectly embodied this new face of Istanbul. The hotel is at the heart of the gleaming Zorlu Center, where luxury fashion and dining meet, in a next-generation contemporary bazaar. So where better to open a chic new pastry boutique, Raffles Patisserie - on a mission to uphold and honour the heritage and craftsmanship of the old Continental pâtissier and chocolatier - and then to add a sprinkle of Oriental magic on it.
Delicious sweet things from Turkey have always been celebrated - traditional Anatolian confectionery and Ottoman era sweetmeats, influenced by the many countries that became part of its Empire - alongside its distinctive Turkish coffee and coffee house culture. Now both are enjoying a rebirth: traditional pastries are being reinterpreted and new coffee houses, inspired by the surge of interest in artisanal coffee, are giving the time-honoured essence of Turkish culture and hospitality a modern touch.
About the new Raffles Patisserie, Tarek Mourad, General Manager says:
“Confectionary has always been at the heart of Turkish culture, sweet things play a part in every stage of our lives: birth, marriage, religious festivals... Sweet things are symbolic of goodness, kindness and optimism in this land. At Raffles Patisserie, we are not only celebrating the delights of the Orient and the art of classical Continental patisserie – but we have our eyes firmly focussed on the future of our city.”
Raffles Patisserie is a modern-day jewellery box, filled with tempting treasures just waiting to be discovered: gem-like cakes, macaroons and pastries, beautiful ice creams and homemade breads, chocolates and local delicacies. The menu features Turkish specialities as well as European creations – like bridges between East and West, mirroring Istanbul itself, a meeting place for centuries.
The lady in charge is Şule Gündoğan, one of the most accomplished young chef pâtissiers in Turkey (more information below). Under Şule’s watch, Raffles Patisserie will have a team of three full time chefs, working to produce treats that can be eaten at the hotel – or taken home, like precious keepsakes, in elegant pink and grey boxes.
This vibrant addition to Raffles Istanbul is also inspired by the heritage of another Raffles project, the iconic Hotel Europejski in Warsaw, currently being restored by Raffles (planned opening 2017). In the early 20th century, the hotel was famous for its Lourse Confiserie, where the hot topics of the day were discussed over the sweet house specialities – just as they will be at the Raffles Patisserie in Istanbul.
Peter French, President of Raffles Hotels & Resorts says:
“Istanbul is the perfect platform for our first Raffles Patisserie, a seamless blend of old and new, just like the menu that showcases classic and new creations. We hope that the elegant Raffles Patisserie becomes a familiar icon of Raffles. Each hotel will interpret the treasure box in its own way with local touches to the menu, the service and the packaging. But each one will be a place our guests will discover both familiar and exotic treats – and enjoy a moment to themselves.”
HOUSE SPECIALITIES - RAFFLES PATISSERIE AT RAFFLES ISTANBUL
Sour Dough Organic Bread; Chocolate Bread; Dried Fig & Pistachio Bread
White Chocolate Tart; Noix de Cacao; Sacher; Carioca; Bienenstich (Şule’s cake)
White Chocolate Brownie Cheesecake; Flourless Cake; Passion Buche Cake; Mixed Berry Tart; Bienenstich (Şule’s cake)
Black Pepper; Lavender; Fleur de Geisha Tea; Hibiscus; Date
Beetroot; Sage; Mastic; Turkish Coffee; Tomato
Ice-creams and Sorbet:
Pistachio; Mastic; Cinnamon & Walnut
Raffles Istanbul, Zorlu Center, 34340 Istanbul, Turkey
Contact: Mango PR 020 7421 2500
ABOUT ŞULE GÜNDOĞAN
Şule’s considerable experience encompasses senior roles with the Four Seasons hotel company in Istanbul, Egypt and Los Angeles, to Executive Chef of her own successful pastry shop. She has worked as head trainer at the Akademi Istanbul, won awards for her wedding cakes and has appeared on television alongside other leading Turkish chefs. Most recently Şule held the position of Executive Chef for Yummy Cupcakes, the first branch of the company outside the USA. In her spare time, she is writing her first book.
ABOUT RAFFLES HOTELS & RESORTS
Raffles Hotels & Resorts is a luxury hotel brand with an illustrious history dating back to 1887 when the world-renowned Raffles opened its doors in Singapore. Today, the remarkable collection includes twelve extraordinary properties in locations as diverse as Paris, Istanbul, and the Seychelles, with many more in development in exciting destinations such as Warsaw and Jeddah. Whether it’s a secluded resort or a lively city-centre, each Raffles promises an oasis of calm and charm and a compelling mix of cultures and styles, and has its very own story to tell. Part of FRHI Hotels & Resorts, a leading global company that also operates the Fairmont and Swissôtel brands, Raffles is proud to draw on the timeless essence of Raffles – to deliver thoughtful, personal and discreet service to well-travelled guests. For more information or reservations, please visit raffles.com.