On the recommendation of AFAR contributing writer Matt Gross, I made sure to eat a meal at Ciya when I was in Istanbul last summer. One afternoon, I dragged my travel companions—a German, a Turk, and two New Yorkers—to Kadikoy, a neighborhood on the Asian side of the Bosphorus. Everyone was cranky and hungry by the time we found it, but I knew the second we walked in, the trek was worth it. The chef, Musa Daðdeviren, comes from eastern Turkey, and his dishes reflect the diverse traditions of the region. We shared many small plates we picked from the counters at the front: fresh salads flavored with seeds and unusual herbs, stewed beans, perfectly tender eggplant, Turkish meatballs, and hot pide bread. For dessert, we tried candied pumpkin, which had a taffy-like texture like nothing I've ever tasted. I could eat there every day.