Moscow, Russia Restaurants
I haven't been to Russia in several years, but when I was there eating was generally the most exciting time of the day. Not that the food was so good, but rather getting into a place or getting them to bring you food was an experience. elsewhere on the boards I mentioned people waving passports at surly doorkeepers to get into seemingly "closed' restaurants. This happened, maybe still does. The private "co-op" restaurants had better food but were overpriced and awkward. I preferred eating in dining rooms of big hotels (which were HUGE and EMPTY - a strange atmosphere. I agree that Arbat St. area has decent choices. Street stalls were also interesting. FANTASTIC ice cream which comes in various forms, seemingly unknown until the vender opens the box. Worth waiting on line for. Finally, try the kvass from "vending machines" on the street if they are still there. I found it best to avoid the big Soviet style retaurants on the street (usually advertised vigorously at hotels). All in all, quite a trip!
I've never been there... but when my parents went they told me they basically lived on black bread, boiled potatoes, vodka and caviar purchased at the berioszkas (sp?).
Hey, you only live once, right? Malossol has to be -somewhat- cheaper there?
Don't get me wrong, but I dont think Moscow rates real high on the cuisine front.
From a very brief trip two years ago, I have to say there is little to recommend. However, I do recall a club called the Hippo club which was fun and served OK food.
The other area for good Georgian places is the Arbat St area of town which is worth trying. Three that stay in the memory are
A couple of recommendations
1) make sure you get a cab there and back booked by your hotel unless you are with locals who actually just stop anyone passing by and negotiate a fee for taking them where they want to go ( usually twice the norm if they see you are western )
2) Make sure you have Visa as I found it impossible to use Amex or Mastercard
All in all an interesting experience
You are bound to find interesting places to eat there. But, from a trip in 1987, the real surprises were the Central Asian restaurants. I hope the Baku is still on the Tverskaya (main N-S road starting at Lenin's Tomb, looking like Upper West Side Broadway). I would comb the town for any good Azerbaijani food, especially the Kharcho soup (lamb meatball with sour plum in filling, chick peas, cilantro) and a decent plov (pillau) with stewed lamb and fruit. The memory still sends shivers up the otherwise jaded spine:). The Aragvi then was the main Georgian hangout and was good. Georgian cuisine can be amazing - there are probably newer and better supplied places to be found. You may also turn up decent Georgian wines that don't arrive here.