Day 13 Turkey – The money shot and best lamb of life!

Our last full day in Turkey started early again because I wanted to get some great shots of the hot air balloons over Cappadocia. As I headed over to the hotel terrace, I could already see them starting to inflate in the distance.

…and then slowly the sky started to fill with balloons. It was an incredible sight to see.

Today we would be moving to the Museum Hotel. As we had some time to kill before check in, we decided to go to the Kaymakli Underground city which was about 30 minutes by car from the hotel.

TIP: The underground city is basically a network of caves. Get there right when it opens. A lot of the spaces are small and tight, and if there are large groups there, its not the ideal situation, especially if you are claustrophobic!

After the underground city, we headed back to Goreme for lunch. Our guide from the previous day had recommended Wood Fire BBQ as the owner was a butcher and very passionate about his meat. We decided to give it a try, and I’m glad we did. The food was delicious.

We had the ribeye and a testi kebap. The steak was cooked perfectly, well seasoned, and very tender.

Service was good too and I would recommend this place. After lunch we headed to Uchisar where the Museum Hotel is located.

Upon arrival, our room was not ready so we hung out on the terrace and enjoyed the views. The service in the outdoor areas can be improved. We were told that a server would come by to take our orders, but none came. After finding one, our drinks came but we never saw another service staff again until our room was ready.

Another hiccup was with the rooms. We had booked the Eflatun Imperial Suite. However, shortly after booking, we were notified that that room was actually unavailable, and we would be placed in the Imperial Pool Suite. This is a room with a pool in the living room! However, when we were shown to our room, it turned out to be the original room. Anyway, it was disappointing, but the actual room was still pretty amazing…except for the bathroom. The concept of the hotel is that you are staying in a museum with each room being unique and filled with artifacts. It did certainly feel that way.

I felt like I was a character in Aladdin! The details in the room were very cool, and despite the flaws in the bathroom, I preferred this hotel over the Sultan Cave Suites. Here is the view from our balcony.

As mentioned above, the only thing I didn’t like was the bathroom. It did not match the details in the rest of the room. For example, the shower was a small cramped plastic unit that was not spotlessly clean. There was brown along the bottom of the shower. To me, the bathroom is one of the first things I look at when deciding whether to book a hotel. I try to find pics from travelers on Tripadvisor. It needs to be spotless. The layout of this bathroom was odd too because the room was massive, but the toilet was crammed in next to the shower. All of this would be unacceptable at any hotel, but especially so for a hotel at this level (the hotel proudly states that it is the only Relais and Chateaux hotel in Turkey).

Dinner – Lil’a: For dinner we went to the hotel’s restaurant Lil’a. Not because it was at the hotel, but because our research indicated that this was a really good restaurant. It was incredible. We started with some bread and salad.

…and then one of the top 5 potato dishes I’ve ever had…they were perfectly seasoned, had an amazing burst of flavor from the herbs and were crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. I still have it on my list of things to try to re-create when I get some time. Truly spectacular (try googling Cappadocia Potatoes Casserole). Many thanks to our fabulous server for recommending this dish.

For our main, another mind blowing dish. The lamb shoulder.

The sauce was out of this world. The consistency was thick like honey after being reduced for so long and the flavors were incredible. The lamb itself was so tender and delicious. Top 3 lambs of all time for sure! For dessert, our server gave us some free baklava.

Overall, this was a fantastic meal. Service was amazing as was the food. Highly highly recommended. As the evening came to a close, we were provided a surprise. The hotel owner gave us a beautiful box as a gift for pointing out the ways the hotel could be improved. A very nice gesture. Tomorrow, flying out to Paris for the Dior fashion show…

1 thought on “Day 13 Turkey – The money shot and best lamb of life!”

  1. incomparable view with the balloon bonanza! i see you enjoyed breakfast while enjoying the balloons. great exchange at the conclusion!
    The potatoes look so plain, I wonder what kind of recipe made it so good

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