Misty-eyed Beyolu old-timers will tell you that in days gone by a meyhane like Yakup 2 used to be so cheap that no one would bother cooking at home or buying the groceries, choosing to dine out at places like this most evenings. Now that Asmalimescit, once a haunt of pimps, ladies (and trannies) of the night and assorted bohemian types, has been hauled up a notch or two, everything’s got a little more refined and foreigners have started dropping in, messing up the local ambience (but lengthening till receipts). Surviving local bohos still frequent the place, using the excuse of eating prodigious quantities of the excellent meze for drinking even more impressive quantities of raki. The seafood-heavy mix of grilled, salt-baked and marinated fish puts the vast majority of Istanbul’s newer, cooler locales to shame. The boisterous background noise and vast selections of food make it particularly amenable to groups, too, provided they book ahead.