BIZNOTE: Original owner wants to bring back Ephesus Restaurant

Six months ago, we reported on the closure of Ephesus Restaurant (5245 California SW), which had previously been taken over by new ownership that changed the menu from Turkish to Greek. Now, its original owner wants to bring back the original Ephesus. We learned this after a tip from Mark that someone was painting inside the building. We went over and found Hasan Ocak, who told us his plan is to reopen the restaurant he founded in 1995. The space needs a lot of work, though, he said – noting he’s already made six dump runs with debris – so he’s not sure about a timeline.

34 Replies to "BIZNOTE: Original owner wants to bring back Ephesus Restaurant"

  • Chuck February 18, 2024 (1:29 pm)

    Wow.  This is great news.  One of my WS favorites.   It was never the same once Hasan left.   Looking forward to the reopening!

  • April February 18, 2024 (1:31 pm)

    Yes!!!! This makes me so happy. 💜

  • Savannah February 18, 2024 (1:39 pm)

    My family and I would be absolutely THRILLED if the original Ephesus came back! We miss it terribly as do a lot of our relatives whom we used to take there when in town.Yes oh yes … bring it back! Pleaaassseee.

  • WS Guy February 18, 2024 (1:58 pm)


  • Michael Waldo February 18, 2024 (2:23 pm)

    What wonderful news! We used to eat there as least once a month. Our go to place for special occasions. Did not enjoy either of the other ones that followed , the Turkish and the Greek.Stopped going long ago.Welcome back Hasan! Now hire some good people so you don’t have to work so hard.

    • KBear February 18, 2024 (4:47 pm)

      Not sure what you mean, Michael. The original Ephesus WAS Turkish food. 

  • LG February 18, 2024 (2:29 pm)

    Such great news! Loved this place back in the day. Never tried it with the new owner but happy to have the original back!

  • Cid February 18, 2024 (2:32 pm)

    So happy to hear this! Had many wonderful meals there. Even had my birthday party with family and friends on the top floor. 

  • Suzanne February 18, 2024 (2:34 pm)


  • olive February 18, 2024 (2:55 pm)

    Welcome back to a classic!

    I believe Hasan Ocak is the property owner, so he should get a huge break on the lease and won’t have to contend with  increases so often blamed for restaurant closures.

  • Phil February 18, 2024 (3:33 pm)

    Great news, we have been great friends of Hasan for many years and can’t wait to enjoy another excellent meal.  

  • ferryboat February 18, 2024 (3:51 pm)

    Best news of 2024!!!

  • WSCurmudgeon February 18, 2024 (3:55 pm)

    Thomas Wolfe’s 1940 novel “You Can’t Go Home Again” cautions against trying to return to past “edens.”

    • SC February 18, 2024 (4:23 pm)

      Username checks out 

      • B February 19, 2024 (1:58 pm)

        @SC – hands down: Best. Response. On WSB. Ever.

  • Joan February 18, 2024 (5:31 pm)

    Good news! I am excited about a different ethnic restaurant.

  • Just wondering February 18, 2024 (10:18 pm)

    We will be there!  And I will give Hasan my usual hug!

  • John February 19, 2024 (12:45 am)

    Godspeed with bringing it back and wishing the owner well that it’s not too much of a headache. It was an absolute shame what the people who took over did to that place

  • Kanakitty February 19, 2024 (6:03 am)

    BEST NEWS EVER!!!! Can’t wait :) 

  • Brent Fosso February 19, 2024 (9:24 am)

    That is potentially great news. We live just a short walk away, and had some very nice meals there on the view deck 2nd floor.

  • BDJ February 19, 2024 (10:33 am)

    Yipee. It used to be great food. So glad to hear Hasan will be back!

  • Robin February 19, 2024 (10:52 am)

    Yeees!! Once Patlican Salatasi left the menu (presumably when the original owner went), so did my interest. I want to eat a bathtub’s worth of that stuff. This is great news!

  • CW February 19, 2024 (2:35 pm)

    Wow!  I really  hope this comes to fruition.  We celebrated my dad’s 100th birthday at Ephesus as it was a favorite restaurant of his.  Loved the red pepper dip with pita.

  • Mark B February 19, 2024 (6:04 pm)

    Good luck to Mr. Ocak and eagerly awaiting visiting the classic when it reopens.  We stopped visiting the Greek iteration after a couple of unenjoyable experiences. 

  • Beatrice February 19, 2024 (6:46 pm)

    We celebrated Pete’s 80th birthday with family and friends, 36 of us,  before  Ephesus’ closing.   Both food and service there were superb.  Do come back, Ephesus!

  • YubabMooba February 20, 2024 (8:03 am)

    If the owner reads this, why not try a more casual but authentic Turkish kebab place? Adana, Iskender, Çöp Şiş, Doner. All of it would be great! 

  • Eric February 20, 2024 (9:34 am)

    We celebrated my wife’s 50th birthday there and it was awesome! Can’t wait to see you back Hasan. 

  • WS4life February 20, 2024 (11:33 am)

    This made me so happy, I can’t wait!  I miss that flat bread and the esme!  Chicken kabobs and rice!  Soooo good!

  • RayWest February 20, 2024 (4:24 pm)

    Very good news! I always loved the original Ephesus, and was very disappointed by the change over to “Greek.”  

  • Jens February 20, 2024 (7:16 pm)

    So exciting!  Can’t wait – Bruschetta ❣️❣️Thank you Hasan!

  • Dave February 20, 2024 (10:43 pm)

    Excited to hear that Ephesus may return.  Fond memories of many fine meals there.

  • Michael February 21, 2024 (9:01 am)

    Yes! Bring back that fresh baked flat bread please!

  • Kristen February 21, 2024 (9:28 am)

    Best news ever! Hasan puts his heart into every dish, we’ve missed him!

  • Lisa Plymate February 21, 2024 (8:31 pm)

    Fantastic!  We’ve missed it so much!!!  Please do return, and bring back your original recipes.  West Seattle isn’t the same without Ephesus!

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