So, you’re in Bucharest and your stomach pangs are striking within you and all you can think about is food. However, you have a dilemma, which is what exactly do you want to eat? Well, don’t worry as I’ve been eating my way through the cafes and restaurants of Bucharest so that I can report back to you on four of the best places to eat. However, each of these places is the best for the type of food and experience that it can offer. Now, as you’re dying to eat right now, scroll over to the part of the article that addresses exactly what type of food and experience you want and get yourself over to that restaurant.
You want to try traditional Romanian food? Go to Caru cu Bere
Love, love, love. Now that’s the only adjective that I can use to describe Caru cu Bere and I’m confident that you will agree with me if you visit this Romanian heaven. Its name, “Caru cu Bere” translates to “beer cart”, but I must tell you that it’s not only a place for beer but rather for the best Romanian food that you could ever sample in the city. Located at Strada Stavropoleos 5, București, 030081, Caru cu Bere is the oldest restaurant in Romania and was established in 1879 by the Mircea family. Today, it even has its own dedicated souvenir shop within it.
The interior of the restaurant is exquisite as it has vaulted ceilings and complex decorations surrounding the walls, such as gold leaf coverings and truly ornate woodwork. To add to the beautiful interior is the fantastic entertainment that is available to all guests during the lunch and dinner service, which includes folk dancing and violinists. The A3 menu has an extensive array of options to choose from and the waiters are more than happy to walk you through the items and recommend which ones go best together. Recommended dishes include the Romanian cheese platter for 48.50 RON (12.00 USD), the warm homemade bread for 7.00 RON (2.00 USD), the delightful polenta for 6.00 RON (2.00 USD) and the hearty braised cabbage for 9.90 RON (3.00 USD). There are too many other items to list, so just go there; it’s too good to miss if you want authentic and traditional Romanian food!
You want to have a healthy dining experience only? Go to Restaurant Aubergine
Located at Strada Smârdan 33, București, 030073, Restaurant Aubergine looks small from the outside but is actually enormous once you step inside its little doors and this is one place that is a heavyweight on serving up healthy food with bold flavours. Please trust me when I tell you that it does not get any better than this delightful eatery when you’re looking for fresh and healthy dishes.
Restaurant Aubergine has two floors with three unique and distinctive dining sections; each represents eclectic and original décor to the maximum. Unlike the popular restaurants, bars and nightlife that surround it, Restaurant Aubergine breaks away from its wild party neighbourhood spirit and provides a sophisticated and calm environment in which to devour good food.
Its extensive menu bellows healthy Mediterranean food with an Israeli infusion and is categorised into starters, salads, soups, pastas, mains and sides, so it’s easy to work your way around. Recommended dishes include the falafels on a bed of hummus with a gorgeously diced side salad for 23 RON (5 USD), the black pearl lentil salad with pomegranate and fresh veggies, costing 26 RON (6 USD) as well as the aubergine pasta with eggplant, kalamata olives, sundried tomatoes, zucchini and carrot, costing 30 RON (7 USD). Wholesome, nutritious and absolutely delicious food awaits you at Restaurant Aubergine.
You fancy some sweet treats in a fine dining setting? Go to the Victoria Club
The Victoria Club is based within the Grand Hotel Continental and is located at 56, Victory Avenue, București, 010083 and my goodness, it is one rather charming decadent dining establishment. You will see grandness and opulence with a touch of comfort running throughout it if you visit.
The décor of the Victoria Club is very plush and sophisticated with its gleaming white walls, tiled floor and crystal chandeliers; the seating is also of the fanciest leather armchairs that you will ever find from Bucharest to Brasov. The interior has a very British feel to it, so you won’t be surprised to hear that it offers a sweet treat that the Brits adore so very much: cream tea and my gosh, the cream tea is highly recommended. Get yourself some warm scones and sweet delicacies accompanied by a wide variety of teas from which you can choose. A cream tea experience at the Victoria Club is utterly magnificent and as you can see from the photograph, it’s quite the pleasurable affair. The cost for a cream tea experience starts at 39 RON (10 USD) per person which is a remarkable bargain in my view. Served between 3 pm–6 pm, I would advise you to check your watch right now and get yourself over there.
You want some international dishes with flair? Go to Bazaar Lounge & Club
Aha, you want some hearty international food in a lively atmosphere, then go no further than the Bazaar Lounge & Club at 10 Covaci Street, București, 30096. It’s a rather large dining establishment, with two floors and differently designed seating areas, to suit your comfort and is quite the newbie in Old Town Bucharest as it only opened in 2013 (compared to Caru cu Bere). Purple, pink and blue feature highly in respect to the lighting in the evenings and the occasional live music, including acoustic, creates a fun and playful vibe to keep your spirits up whilst you wait for the tasty food.
Ornaments, plants and other accessories are dotted about throughout the place. The very cool and quirky interior does make for a lovely atmosphere, which primarily tends to be locals enjoying their hard earned money with their family and friends. The menu is a large A3 page and includes mainly international dishes with a few traditional Romanian items to choose from. Recommended dishes include creamy green soup for 14 RON (4 USD), their legendary shiny jacket potatoes for a shocking 14 RON (4 USD) only, gnocchi with arugula pesto for 21 RON (5 USD), onion rings for 11 RON (3 USD) and some generous cheesy nachos with guacamole, salsa and sour cream for 22 RON (6 USD). It’s like travelling the world through one meal at Bazaar Lounge & Club.
Oh, where to go? My advice is try them all!
If you managed to reach the end of this review and unlike most the readers that I envisaged, were not dying to have something to eat just yet, then I would have to say that if you’re in Bucharest for a few days, I would thoroughly recommend that you try each of these dining establishments. As I’ve shown you, they’re all very different but they do have one thing in common which is delicious food and generous portions! Satisfy your culinary curiosity for Romanian food at Caru cu Bere; have something light, healthy and full of goodness at Restaurant Aubergine; treat yourself to a special cream tea at the Victoria Club and finally enjoy an evening of international food at the remarkable Bazaar Lounge & Club.
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