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Eating well and not too much

Eating well and not too much


restaurant has gotten five facelifts since those early days. Cosmo used to be a separate restaurant, but now is just a private room upstairs. Try escargots Provençal as a starter, then move on to the pheasant breast with kumquat sauce or one of the substantial salads. There are great desserts. Service is also great, but a bit more continuity in the décor, please. The small balcony has pleasant tables.

the uneducated among the Russian expat community). It is worth sitting at one of the tables in the cellar, preferably at one of the inner ones where you feel as if you are being served in a comfortable cave, away from the troubles of the world. The restaurant is run by an immigrant lady from Azerbaijan, who speaks excellent Hungarian by now (but still with a charming accent).

Gundel See Walk Four, page 232–233.

Modern, Atypical Budapest Places, Where We Will Not Necessarily Gain 10 Pounds in 4 Days

Three Traditional, “shirtsleeve” Restaurants whith a mixed clientele, and good value Rosenstein VIII. Mosonyi utca 3.,, open Monday to Saturday noon to 11 p.m., closed in August. This restaurant is a favourite among Budapest’s gourmets, and is between a railway station and a police barracks. Located far from any of the city’s other good restaurants, its location is an improbable one. It is favoured by media people and the Budapest gourmands who hate salads and love rich, traditional Hungarian dishes in big portions. The latter smile at the faux elegance of the place. The menu is reliable and chef/owner Tibor Rosenstein is a master of Hungarian and Jewish specialties. His family serves the food. Kisbudagyöngye III. Kenyeres utca 34.,, open Monday to Saturday noon to midnight. The “Small Pearl of Buda” opened in 1990 and is the successor of a well-known place that was shabby, but charming. The décor is a cross between post-modern and fin-de-siècle. It seems as if the designer ransacked low-quality antique shops and the Ecseri flea market in order to panel the walls with cupboard sides and doors, pieces of drawers, and hardwood of all kinds, tints and patterns. The mixture adds up to an elegant, intimate atmosphere. The menu, which pleasingly has few misprints, features Hungarian and international dishes. Booking is essential.

Café Kör V. Sas utca 17.,, open Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. This intimate place is now a Budapest classic. Kör means “circle”, but it is no coincidence that it also hints at the French word coeur, which means “heart”. It looks and feels like a French bistro, one that has been here for a century (a compliment that is hard to give in present-day Budapest). Located on a small side street near the Basilica, the daily specials are written on a blackboard. Avoid the place at early-lunch-time, when it is full of mostly junior diplomats from the nearby American Embassy. Real insiders – like professors from the Central European University with their egghead friends or guests from abroad – come later. Café Kör is one of my all-time favourites. I always order fish here. Arcade XII. Kiss János altábornagy utca 38.,, open Tuesday to Sunday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. According to the otherwise ultra-picky Wittman Boys (who used to be the restaurant reviewers for Hungary’s biggest daily newspaper, Népszabadság), this restaurant is “overwhelming happiness, a continuous state of agitation, constantly reproduced creative energies…” This compliment is no small feat. The place is a singularly high-quality, reasonably priced restaurant with a style of its own, pretty much the only one in Buda. It serves adventurous, international, modern cuisine and is a favourite of the art world. It was established in January 2001 and is a younger sister of Café Kör in Pest.

Marquis de Salade VI. Hajós utca 43.,, open daily 11 a.m. to midnight. Originally, this place was just a salad bar that opened after the Changes of 1989-1990. Later it was transformed into one of the city’s more adventurous restaurants. East meets West in the menu here, or rather, Paris meets the Caucasus. The extensive menu is also in Russian (and the place has not been ruined by

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2011.04.20. 15:50:07

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András Török's Budapest: A Critical Guide  

The Celebrated Insider's Guide, upgraded many times, probably the deepest and funnieast and truest portrait of any major European city. With...

András Török's Budapest: A Critical Guide  

The Celebrated Insider's Guide, upgraded many times, probably the deepest and funnieast and truest portrait of any major European city. With...

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