ASPAVA – Ankara’s Gift To The World!
One can never completely explore a place without having tasted food that is unique to it! That is exactly what we will do in this post, explore a restaurant whose style is unique to Ankara. The idea came to me when many of you readers asked me to do a post exploring the food scene in Ankara. What better way to do it than explore ASPAVA, more importantly, explore one of the first ASPAVA in the world? There are many ASPAVAs’ popping up not only around Turkey but the entire world, however, it was Ankara that gave birth to it. Before we go ahead, let me answer the 2 most frequently asked questions that people have when they are being introduced to ASPAVA.
What does ASPAVA stand for?
“Allah Sağlık Para Afiyet Versin Amin” (May Allah Give Health, Money and Welfare. Amen.).
What makes an ASPAVA different from other restaurants?
It’s their style that makes them different. An ASPAVA makes sure that their customers are stuffed with food and satisfied regardless of what they may have ordered. They do this by loading the table with side dishes absolutely free of cost (called “ikram”)! Appetizers, sweet dishes and tea are all on the house and you can also ask for a refill. Another thing that sets an ASPAVA aside from other restaurents is that it has to be open 24/7.
Since we have that out of the way, let’s return to exploring Ankara. I wanted you to feel as though we were out exploring Ankara’s food scene together, so I decided to switch things a little and tell you the story of my exploration in the form of a photo essay. You are about to see what I saw, unfortunately, you will not be able to taste the amazing food that I devoured. Unless, through this post, I am able to convince you to visit an ASPAVA and experience the delicious food yourself. Out exploring ASPAVA, I turned into those annoying people who snap pictures of their food every 2 minutes. However, this was different, it was for a noble cause! Or at least that’s how I kept reassuring myself, and I am actually turning into one of those people that I so enjoy making fun of. I suggest that you do not torture yourself by viewing these pictures while you are hungry! You can click on the picture if you are curious to know more about a particular dish. It will direct you to a page where you can find detailed information regarding how it is prepared. Finally, you can find the location of the ASPAVA that I visited, towards the end of this post. Let’s jump right in to the pictures I took while exploring Ankara!
I was not going to end this post without letting you know how much I spent at the ASPAVA! Not as much as you might have imagined. The Beyti cost me just 22 ₺ ( around 6.25 $). The cheapest main course on the menu was lahmacun and it would cost you 10 ₺ (around 2.84 $). The fact that one could eat so much for that amount is simply mindblowing. I plan on becoming a weekly customer like Ömer too! I’ll just have to spend twice the time at the gym…
Don’t forget to send me a message if you do end up going to an ASPAVA because of this post!
I hope you enjoyed the photo essay and like always keep sending in your suggestions and feedback.