/Son Çare Köftecisi, Antalya

Son Çare Köftecisi, Antalya


Son Çare means “last chance” in Turkish, a name that seems unrelated to a shop selling köfte (grilled meatball) sandwiches. According to the rumor mill, the owner of Son Çare was a very rich man, then suddenly lost all his money. In order to support himself he had to start over. He built a cart and borrowed meat from the butcher and grilled meatballs on the street in Antalya, repaying the meat at the end of every day. Slowly but surely he made a name for himself and was eventually able to rent a small shop near Antalya’s clock tower. After continued success, he launched a larger shop on the cusp of the old city, on the west side of Dönerciler Çarşısı (a large steet food complex). The man had made good on his last chance.

My experience Son Çare was weird. Usually I am the one sticking my camera in people’s faces at restaurants but this time, I was the subject. The server took my drink order (water and ayran, of course) then took out his cell phone and took a picture of me. I asked him what he was doing, but that is about as far as I got. My food related Turkish is flawless but everything else is a mess. If I wasn’t so hungry, I may have argued with him, but I didn’t want to risk losing out on Son Çare’s famous köfte. And hell, if he wanted a picture of a sweaty American on his Nokia, who am I to stop him? In my defense it was 40 degrees at 11pm! Only Italians don’t sweat at that temperature. Fact.

A few awkward moments later, I was beckoned to the salad bar, and a huge köfte sandwich was stuffed into my hands. I was instructed to fill it with whatever I wanted from the salad bar and I set out sprinkling my sandwich with sumac, red pepper flakes, onions, tomatoes, and arugula. While we may have gotten off to a bumpy start, this sandwich made everything better between the server and me. Plus, every time he would come over and ask me which pension I was staying in, I could shove the sandwich in my mouth and politely rebuff him. Overall, a delightful and useful sandwich. With ayran and tea the bill came to 5TL (2.50 euros).

2016-01-07T14:37:53+00:00 August 13th, 2009|Categories: Meat, Turkish Cuisine|7 Comments


  1. onur August 14, 2009 at 7:37 pm - Reply

    son care is very good but you have missed another good place which was very close to Son Care. It is called “Gonlubol”. Lots of delecious kebabs.

    I am trying to put up a website about people’s experiences in Turkey. Would you be interested in publishing this article on my site with a referral back to yours. Let me know what you think. You can reach me via info@iwasinturkey.com

  2. Jessica August 14, 2009 at 10:21 pm - Reply

    Haha I love this post….good info on food and good story to boot.

  3. Travellious.com August 14, 2009 at 10:45 pm - Reply

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  4. Katie August 14, 2009 at 9:48 pm - Reply

    Gonlubol nerede? Antalya’ya 27 Ağustos’de
    gidiyorum! That would be great if you published this post on your site with links back to ParlaFood. Use any post you would like! Afiyet olsun!

  5. Katie August 14, 2009 at 10:24 pm - Reply

    Thanks Jess Im thinking of adding my photo with the owner but I’m afraid to look at it again!

  6. Nonna August 15, 2009 at 2:12 am - Reply

    That looks sooo good

  7. Oburcan September 2, 2009 at 4:53 pm - Reply

    If you are interested in different types kofte,you should come to Ankara.Or for the beginning visit my blog and read Köz Köfte and Üstünel Köftecisi.

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