Hi everyone. I just wanted to let you know that I'm a food-lover living in Krakow and if any of you are planning (or even just considering!) visiting this beautiful city, you are more than welcome to ask me any questions about recommendations in Krakow!
I've been to tons of places here from the most expensive to the cheapest but tastiest keilbasa stand you'll ever experience...
Let me know what kind of places you're looking for!
Just had a fabulous weekend in Krakow. Stayed at the Tango House. We had an amazing meal at Ancora. Highly recommended. I got three tapas (omelette, grilled goat cheese, and white bean mousse) while my partner got the goat cheese - smoked pumpkin - beetroot appetizer. All were excellent. The haloumi was very smokey, with an almost ash-like charring. For the "intermezzo" I got the pepper vodka and oyster, while partner got the cucumber-bison grass vodka sorbet. The oyster was unremarkable, but the sorbet was out of this world! We ordered the halibut and salmon for entrees. Both were fabulous. The fish was perfectly cooked in both cases, and had a lot of flavor. The accoutrements were good pairings and really enhanced the experience. For dessert we shared the chocolate-blue cheese souffle. It was nice, but not especially exciting. With two glasses of champagne and two glasses of wine, we came in at 270pln. One of our best meals in a long time.
Other highlights in Krakow included hot beer at Singer, Zapiekanki from Endzior, and a few rounds of Bison Grass Vodka shots at Mechanoff.
We had a plate of pierogi at Zapiecek Polskie Pierogarnie, which were very good. The winter tea was great.
Greatly enjoyed walking around the markets at Plac Nowy, Plac Targowy, and Stary Kleparz. Picked up some excellent bread, and a few pieces of oscypek.
Misses: the Hamsa Hummus Bar in Kazimierz, which served less than impressive hummus and a version of "Yotam Ottolenghi Aubergine" that paled compared to what I make at home. Alchemia seemed nice, but the odor from the smoking section in the back was filling up the rest of the bar.
Overall, a beautiful city. The train to/from the airport was a boon - 20 minutes vs. the hour on the bus. The difference in price was negligible ($2/$4). Can't wait to go back!
A big thank you to everyone who has contributed on this long running thread for Krakow. I spent a recent weekend there and took a lot of advice from this thread.
We enjoyed a ton of pyrogies as we cannot easily get them in our current home town... and in fact managed to fit them into every meal but breakfast (someone needs to come up with a breakfast pyrogi).
We had half our dinner the first night at Zapiecek Polskie Pierogarmie sampling their traditional mix plate and a plate of the Ruskies. The mushroom pyrogi and the meat pyrogies were the real hits from everything we sampled. We then had the other half of dinner across the street at Raj Pyrogi. Raj was not as good as Zapiecek Polski Pierogarmie, theirs were heavier and the fillings less tastey. Raj does get credit for inventiveness as they had a rather significant array of fillings.
We also purchased takeaway pyrogies for home from Zapiecek Polskie Pierogarmie, they will soon be nestled in with some fine Czech kielbasa, sauerkraut and sour cream.
Our last meal was at Wesele, again we ordered up the mixed plate of pyrogi along with some starter soups (mushroom and goose & barley). Excellent pyrogi (especially the potatoe and cheese), outstanding soups but the service was a bit haphazard.
We also enjoyed a few glasses of wine in front of the fire at Singer. This was a great little place, relaxing atmosphere and a good mix of tourists and locals.
No complaints for Krakow, except the long line ups for mulled wine at the Christmas market in the main square... but that's being a bit picky on my part :-)
Off to Krakow next weekend !
Is 'the sausage guy' still at large ?
Please confirm if his sausages are still top quality, and if so where can he/they be found ? !
Also, any other new places opened or bars/food places north of the main square - we are staying on , Jana Kochanowskiego
Making my first trip to Poland and looking for authentic food like my babci used to make. I'd especially LOVE to find a restaurant serving white borscht (barszcz bialy) since it's a staple on my Easter breakfast table. Recipe passed to me from babci and I'd be really interested in tasting it there.
Otherwise, looking for pierogies, golumpki, pork, kielbasa - traditional Polish fare. We're staying in old town but will travel for good food! Thanks for any suggestions.
we had a nice dinner last night at Gospoda u Zdzicha...a "folk" restaurant on the south side of the Market Hall square (Rynek Glowny 24)...a 'hound-ish sort of place, seemed to us: borscht, dumplings, sour soup, goulash-with-potato pancakes (really, what did Europeans DO for food before 1500?)...beer...mix of twenty-, thirty-something locals, a family or two, some tourists...country decore on the walls, simple tables, chairs, booths...didn't cost $40 US for two, if memory serves...comforting, recommended
i'm going to Krakow for a wedding in september and i'm so exicted!
any new updates on food. outside of the wedding it looks like i'll have 2 full days and an additional 2 mornings to explore. could you give me recommendations? i LOVE polish food - the kielbasa stand is definitely on my list. i'd also love to try any other traditional and modern polish restaurants, hole in the walls, stands etc.
Definitely get to the kielbasa van! I ended up going there twice while I was in Krakow, just for the experience. Also had a great meal at Wesele, at the southeast corner of the main square, the address is Rynek Glowny 10. I believe the name means "wedding" in Polish, so a meal there might be appropriate given your circumstances. Good pierogies at Zapiecek Polskie Pierogarnie, Ul. Slawkowska 32. Good, basic Polish fare (stuffed cabbage, sausages, etc.) at U Stasi, Ul. Mikolajska 16. My best advice is to have mushroom soup whenever possible. I never cared for it here at home, but it came with the first meal I had in Krakow, and after that I ordered it every time I saw it on a menu. Wonderful. Good eating.
I plan to be in Krakow in three weeks. I am intrigued by the kielbasa van guys and plan to seek them out. The last posts place their location In front of Hala Targova, on Grzegorzecka, opposite Blich. Is this still accurate? Also, beside CK Browar, are there any brewpubs in the Old Town/Kazmierz area? Thanks.
Hi, Roygbiv, my husband and I will be in Krakow for three nights in February. We would like to eat in one very nice restaurant and the other meals in more casual and inexpensive places. We would like local food and local/non-touristy ambiance. We are staying at the Hotel Wentzl at Rynek Glowny.
I know I've posted about this place before: it is right around the corner form the very touristy ul. seroka in the Jewish Quarter. All the tourists eat at one of the cafes right on the busy tourist street. They pay elevated prices for food that is not as good.
If you go at lunch time, they have a shockingly inexpensive lunch special. This is where the Poles eat and pay Polish prices.
We are having a family bat mitzvah celebration in Krakow in Aug. of 2010. Do you have any recommendations of someplace fun for dinner in Kazimerz, with klezmer music, to celebrate on a Sat. night? I know many of places in Kazimierz are Disneyesque, but was hoping you might have a spot that you thought was fun and had decent food. Both Alchemia and Singer seem more club-like than restaurant. Looking for a spot for about 15 people. Would Ariel be my best bet? Also, any recs for a family luncheon on Sat. in Kazimierz?
Thanks so much for your help.
I guess Klezmer Hois would be the obvious answer. The food is very expensive (for Krakow) and not particularly good (the gefilte fish falls on the sweet side of the 'gefilte fish line'), but with such a large menu I am sure there are some decent things to eat. And food is usually a secondary concern when a Bat Mitzvah comes into play.
I usually recommend Restauracjy Galicia, around the corner from Klezmer Hois, and it does have a downstairs level (the brick cellar they show on their home page) that I suppose would be good for a party. I don't believe they regularly have Klezmer music, so you'd probably have to arrange soemthing.
I'm off to Krakow next week for a week, for the third time this year. I've been to a lot of the lovely restaurants mentioned in this thread like Miod Malina, Singer, Rubensteins, Szara, Klezmer Hois, Ariel etc., but this time I want to try a wee bit further outside of the main areas.
I'm staying in an apartment on Szeroka, Kazimierz this time so I'd especially like to hear about any interesting bars or restaurants in the Podgorze area. I'm travelling alone so not really looking for romantic, etc., more lively, friendly places are more my scene.
If anyone could give me some hints they'd be greatly appreciated.
Went to Miod Malina yesterday- had a wonderful carpaccio. Very nice place, have to come back for more . I also had some nice and very refreshing Tokay from a barrel at the Camelot-still my favorite hang-out place in Krakow after all these years...I always come back for some tokay, sometimes also a salad at lunchtime or a nice piece of szarlotka
with ice cream (apple tart).
Also discovered a new med style restaurant called Mezze. Nice concept - you choose a few mezze (4zl each) quite a few choices, you pick, they bring to the table. After that I ordered fresh, grilled sardines-very nice, just like in pain just olive oil and lemon juice. Nice short menu, the place is located on Sw. Tomasza st, corner od Sw. Krzyza (Old Town).
Here's a little update on the sausage guy. He's not exactly under the bridge anymore, but rather right behind the bridge in a blue truck; in front of the truck sit a few huge grills and a line of hungry customers. They cost 7 zl each and consist of a foot long kielbasa, a roll and some honey mustard. I think the honey mustard destroys the sublime flavor of the sausage, which has a rather herbal taste, so do try the sausage plain before you hit the honey mustard sauce. Going to try a newer place tonight, the Pod Baranem, which has been getting some great reviews on Trip Advisor (normally not my favorite site for eating reviews), BUT they seem to have the best wild game selection in town. Wesele the following night. Will report back on both.
Here's the promised review of Pod Baranem. I'll not be reviewing Wesele because PB was so good, I'm going to go there again tomorrow, my last night in Krakow. PB has an excellent wild game menu, and it's truly wild game, not the farm-raised stuff they call "wild" in the states. The atmosphere is fancy-country, the sort of rooms you mighy expect at an elegant hunting lodge. Service was very attentive and this was a place that attracted both tourists and locals; not too many places in the Old City can make that claim. I liked that the location was a bit off the main drag and seemed to beckon discriminating diners rather than folks just wandering around looking for a place with an empty table. The house Italian red wine is decent and good value at only around $4 per 6 oz glass. We both split a delicious stuffed cabbage appetizer (large enough for a main course for one) with mushroom sauce, then I tried the excellent wild boar tenderloin in hunter sauce, with local Rowan berries on the side (an unusual berry that grows in the US, but is not commonly found on restaurant menus) and the wife enjoyed goulash-stuffed potato pancakes. The spinach side I had with the boar was the best I've ever eaten and the house dessert (apple pie with whipped cream, vanilla sauce and strawberry ice cream) was very good. Check out some of the other reviews on Trip Advisor and Cracow-Life.com.
Although our last trip to Krakow was in the summer of 2001, these restaurants are still listed and were VERY good.....and inexpensive. All are within walking distance in the Market Square. The two times we went for Polish "peasant" food, we traveled out of the city.
Cherubino ul. Tomasza 15
Atmospheric cherub-bedecked restaurant
Da Pietro Rynek Glowny 17
Traditional Italian on the Market Square
Metropolitan ul. Slawkowska 3
Best breakfasts around - and great service
Paese ul. Poselska 24
Corsica in Cracow!
Last night we went to Wesele, and the meal was quite nice: chicken liver and apple appetizer, cold cucumber soup (thick and yogurty and refreshing) and a giant plate of mixed perogi- potato and cheese, meat, and mushroom sauerkraut topped with bacon. There were 8 of us and the total was around 125 euro. Unbelievably reasonable compared to Berlin or Paris. Good exchange rate, i guess.
Before we wen t to Wesele we stopped at Miod Malina but the table situation was bad for our large group. I think the menus are similar as they are owned by the same people, but if I had my choice I would have gone here- the atmosphere was more intimate and romantic despite its busy nature.
So far, so good Krakow! I've got 3 more days of eating and I'm looking forward to it all of it.
Last night went to Orient Ekpress. A charming concept and beautiful garden in the back of the house, but the food ranged from uninspired to neglected. I had the trout wrapped in bacon with kasha, and while it tasted delicious, was completely raw in the middle. Not rare, raw. It could have been fantastic if someone had paid attention to what they were doing, and I guess that's why I was so disappointed. Plus, I was hungry and wanted to eat more than half my dinner. Those who had beefsteak found it to be too rare and yet dry at the same time. For dessert the berry perogi looked interesting, but we had to pass. In all, a disappointment, considering this was our last chance to freely choose where we were going to eat.
After dinner we went on to Ariel in Kazimierz (sp?) to join another group, and was also not impressed with the food outside of the freshly friend piroski. General atmosphere and service was grim, although the Klezmer music and vodka made up for it.
On the main square we stopped at Miyako for a light lunch of sushi and soup earlier in the day, and it was just fine. Totally functional for the purpose, and sitting at the square was quite nice.
Tonight, late dinner after the Film music festival concert. Will report :)
I wrote up this review when I got back in Oct. but will pop in the Krakow info again (also went to Berlin) in case it's helpful. Our "big" meal at Wesele was fine but not a big deal.
I made up for the lack of real food in Krakow starting with chicken cutlets w/ mushrooms and a side of cabbage at Cucina u. Dorotny on Miodowa St. down from our Kazimierz Hotel. Smalll homey place, no smoking allowed thankfully. A. had potato pancakes with goulash in between, lots of food for about 25 pln. A nice lunch of pork schnitzl w/ a side of cucumber, carrots and cabbage in a small popular lunch place, Gospoda Koko on Golebia for about 13. After the long trip to Auschwitz we stopped at CK Browar on Podwale where I thought A. would appreciate their home brewed beers. We had more pancakes w/ goulash, this had a much sweeter sauce and not quite as good (and more money). We found the kielbasa guy by the bridge around Diens and got a huge sausage w/ roll for a good price. also hit Chlopskie Jadio on Jana St., a very rustic looking spot with home cooking. I went with their lunch special of cabbage/pork soup, goulash and apple dessert for I think 19pln. The dessert wasn't great but the rest was good. Even better was the fried potato, hard boiled egg and bacon dish A. got, those potatoes were amazing. Big hunks of bread served with a spread and lard w/ bits of bacon, good stuff. An order of traditional pierogies at Zapiecek was filling but I prefer them sautéed more. Our slightly nicer dinner was at Wesele on the Placa Rowny where they serve lots of game. I went with goose which had a more beefy taste than I expected. The sauce with it was a little too sweet tho. All these places make you order sides, I went with dumplings and A went with fried potatoes w/ his pork dish in mustard/apple sauce. That was good but not too exciting. The dessert that was described as like apple strudel had no strudel and was just okay. Very sweet waiter, maybe the best service we had on the trip. Also ended up with an unplanned niceer dinner at Amarone in the Pod Roza Hotel. It was the nice glassware that lured me in, wanted a nice glass of wine which was about 15pln. We split a salad of greens and rababit liver, which had a prosciutto feel about it. The fresh greens were good and also split an app of pasta stuffed with leeks in a creamy sauce. Very nice, and fairly expensive. Wish we'd dressed up more for it. Huge nice space but pretty quiet on a Thurs. nite and fairly morose service. My one straight out hot dog from a little window on Dluga was disappointing, no snap to that thing at all. And have to say, the paczki donuts weren't too exciting (better at the mom n pop shops over here) but ice cream cones were good and less than $1 all over the place including a great coffee one from Slodki Wentzl.
Cafes and bars in Krakow: too many to mention. In Kazimierz, I loved Lokator and Moment. Also Miejsce, B Side and Alchimia. Fuego and Propaganda were okay and La Habana in Kaz. and Café Botanica in old town looked cool. In the old town, I loved the cafes Gotebia 3 which was super funky and cozy and Cztery across the street with its psychedelic look. We had a very nice and expensive dessert and latte at Rest. Pod Krzyzkiem in the square, worth every penny and good service. The doner wasn't as good as in Berlin, not sure what the big deal about the zapiekanka is, I shouldn't have let him talk me into putting ketchup on it. Apartment 14 in Kaz. had fancy cocktails, we took advantage of the happy hour and got a cosmo and a capirhina like drink. Got a martini at Martini on Marka St., which had no cocktail list and seemed to be more of a sports bar. Stopped in the metal bar Tower Pub a few times, once for a show. Also on Grodska down a hallway was Popularny where they played heavy duty metal but that didn't stop them from throwing on some Meatloaf.
Thanks for this detailed post Very interesting! I have to disagree with you about Chlopskie Jadlo, though. To me, it is a theme restaurant with food that only approximates the rustic cooking of Malopolska. Out of Krakow, there are so many REAL rustic places that do this kind of food but better, especially in Zakopane.
RE: Cucina u. Dorotny on Miodowa St. (not sure if Dorotny or Doroty) -from an SF chowhounder
I just had lunch there, since it is just around the corner from the flat we are staying in. The house special potato pancake with tomato based goulash sandwiched in the middle is absolutely delish... we went with 3 other locals & we all had it since it is THE BEST according to them (and they say they have had a lot of bad ones in their lifetime). The portion is huge even by big American Chowhounders standards & we likes to eats. A bargatin at 14 Zlty.
We also started with the tomato soup. Very tasty and you can really taste the homemade rustic touch on this soup. NOT like any other tomato soup I've had. It included these lovely delicate eggy - spatzle like noodles. Our hosts insisted that this a very good soup indeed. A meal in itself probably for some but we had our pancakes coming. This was also a bargain at 4 Zlty.
We also had a ldrink that probably most would not try. It was described as a
compote (or cooked down fruits)into a syrup & then made into a beautiful red drink... not to sweet but seemed like something only the locals knew about. Try it.
I can't wait to go back & try the cutlets & the dessert pancakes... good thing I have the rest of this month to try everything.... YUM!
Just got back from Krakow, want to emphasize how unbelievably good (and cheap) Cucina u Doroty is. We ended up eating three meals there during our week because we wanted to try as many things as possible. Tried the tomato and sour rye soup, both delicious. Pierogies, potato pancakes, golampkies, all amazing. My wife and I never spent more than 45 pln total (about $15) for a meal that could have easily fed 4. If you told me we had to eat there everyday of the trip it would have been ok, definitely best traditional Polish food on the trip.
hey! sorry guys. i haven't had much time lately to check up on the chow boards, though i'm still happy to help all of you!
re: new sausage guys... there IS one new one i noticed last week! they are on the corner of miodowa and starowislna right across the pathway that goes to szeroka (main tourist street in kazimierz). haven't tasted it yet, but it looks like a potentially nice bit of street meat to me.
btw - does anybody know if i can turn on notifications so i get a mail when someone posts on this thread?
I'd like to take you up on your generous offer to share some of your favourite spots. I'm visiting Krakow at the end of February for five days. I'd be very interested on any recommendations you would have for a first-time visitor. I'm hoping to push the boat out on a least one night as a birthday treat. Mostly, I'm interested in trying all that can in the time I'm here. Just reading some of the suggestions in this thread alone has really whetted my appetite. Would you have a top 5 or something similiar?
With many thanks in advance . . .
I've been visiting Krakow for the past week or so and have tried a bunch of restaurants in the area. everyone's been right on the money about the overall restaurant quality. I've noticed that the produce and overall freshness of the food has been to a really high standard, although the portion size is often a little more than I'm used to (being from NYC).
I tried Miod Malina pretty early on and it was fantastic! I started with the wild mushrooms in the cream sauce (these were delicious, but definitely a dish for 2 or more people to share as a starter). I also had the duck which, although very good, wasn't much to crow about. The wait staff was helpful and the decor was warm and inviting. My boyfriend's pork chop was excellent.
Another one of my favorites was the Oriental Ekspres. This restaurant is very romantic and the food is delicious. Try the duck with cinnamon and anise star or the salmon with mango. It's a great place to try when you are interested in trying something with more of an international feel than the traditional Polish offerings and standbys. The restaurant has a few booths inside that are set up to look like the inside of a private train car, complete with vintage luggage overhead and deep red velvet bolsters lining each bench.
I also tried Zapiecek Polskie Pierogarmie (Ulica Slawkowska 32). Both the meat and the sour cabbage and mushroom pierogies were tasty. They had a nice firm outer pocket with a savory mash of peppery ground beef inside. The warm sour cabbage filling was equally delicious with seasonal wild mushrooms that you could only imagine had simmered over low heat with onions and prunes.
The Camelot Cafe in the old town was great too. They have a great selection of sandwiches and coffee/tea beverages. It's located in this little enclave off a quiet street not far from the square. The atmosphere was very familiar to an outdoor cafe in NY or in Paris. Free WiFi too.
But the absolute best meal that I had in Krakow was the meal at the Italian restaurant across the street from Camelot called Amarone. It was pretty expensive, but it was well worth it for a romantic evening. We enjoyed every dish from the Parma ham with melon, the scallop with pesto (beautiful presentation inside of a shell), the eggplant with rabbit ragout and goat cheese salad, the cheese plate (although, the wait staff was unable to tell us the names of the cheeses included) with the pear sauce (delicious!!) and the raspberry tart with milk flavored ice cream. This restaurant was fantastic, had a great wine list, and even had live piano on the evening that we visited.
Krakow is truly a great place for a foodie visit. I'm looking forward to chasing down that kielbasa man tonight! Thanks!
Am in Krakow now and had a fantastic pierogie lunch at Vincenta. We shared the Ruskie pierogies (cottage cheese, potatoes, onions), Emperor's (lamb, rosemary and thyme), Cottage cheese (sweet) and the fruit palette (15 assorted fruit pierogies). All were amazing, especially the Emperor's! Have one more day here which means 2 more meals. Where exactly is the kielbasa stand? Also, any other suggestions for an affordable meal(<40 PLN pp) would be appreciated! Dined at a milk bar (amazing potato pancakes!) and a Jewish klezmer restaurant (Klezmer Hois - disappointing).
Also, went into McDonald's in Old Town to check out the basement architecture. Probably the most romantic and beautiful (!!!) McDonald's I've ever been in!
Lastly, I wasn't involved in planning this trip and am deeply saddened to learn that I will be leaving before the pierogie festival...:(
I was in Krakow about 3-4 weeks ago and had an excellent Thai meal at Honai in Kazimierz. I had sesame-covered shrimp for an appetizer and beef red curry for an entree. It was expensive, but worth it. On the way there from Czestochowa I had an excellent meal at a restaurant in a small town that you go through to get to Auschwitz. I was in Poland for 5 days and never had one bad meal. All the food was good in every restaurant I tried. I live on the German-Polish border and Gubin, PL has some good restaurants too.
just a quick correction - the restaurant is called Horai, and for those interested in visiting it's on Plac Wolnica in Kazimierz. Indeed quite nice Asian food (for Polish standards at least), but avoid the sushi... the noodle bowls are quite good though! you can see they have an idea of what they're doing :)
I've been visiting Kraków periodically since the late 1980s, and it is one of my favorite cities. Among the fancier restaurants in the old town, I have had some fine meals at Restauracja Pod Aniołami, Hawełka, and their beautiful room upstairs, Restauracja Tetmajerowska. I have not been to Wierzynek in years, but if you're only going to Kraków once, it's someplace to see. Among more moderately priced restaurants for traditional Polish food, I quite like Chłopskie Jadło.
I keep meaning to try that kiełbasa guy under the bridge, who is legendary, but I haven't gotten there yet. Next time!
I'll have to try Singer next visit, because I'd be interested to know where the good zapiekanki are nowadays. In the waning years of Communism, zapiekanki were the most popular street food. There were stands where they sauteed onions and garlic fresh and they were served on a thin split ficelle with cheese and a kind of spicy ketchup, and everybody ate them. In recent years zapiekanki have been displaced by shawarma stands locally called "kebab." So a few years ago I ordered a zapiekanka from one of the few remaining zapiekanki stands (they seem to have become an anachronism), and the guy took out what looked like a Stouffer's french bread pizza from a plastic bag in the freezer and heated it up for me in a microwave oven, leading me to conclude that almost every aspect of life has improved in Poland with the return of democracy, with the exception of zapiekanki.
re: David A. Goldfarb
well yes it definitely depends where you're getting your zapiekanka! it's true that with all those modern things like microwaves popping up in eastern europe in the last 20 years, good food has been harder to track down. but you'll be glad to know that if you go to a proper zapiekanka joint (such as the ones on plac nowy) you're almost always getting a baguette that's been in an actual oven, rather than a microwave ;)
depending on the place, you will get either a frozen baguette to start with, or a premade, more home-made style one. there is actually one zapiekanka/kebab place on Florianska Street (i wish i remembered the address... or even the name!) which serves the most home-made tasting ones.
zapiekanka always come as a baguette with mushrooms and cheese on top to start with. then you can add any combo of toppings that you like.
endzior is definitely a nice choice... but beware of the queues! i've had to stand for over half and hour at this one... definitely not worth it in my book.
Well, I will try Wesele, thanks for the suggestion.
Regarding Kazimierz- yeah, it's mostly about bars. Singer is the cutest, with all the Singer sewing machines acting as tables. Also, on Plac Nowy there is this famous place called Endzior, quite an institution for rustic food lovers out there. I also ate only once in a restaurant in Kazimierz- it was at the Ariel restaurant, decent food, Jewish in origin.
As far as Old Town (Mikolajska st)area goes try, if you haven't already, a little place called U Stasi. The food is homemade, the real deal, and I guarantee you will never see so many professors and students from the Jagiellonian University anywhere else!
by request, here is some useful info for vegetarians and just veggie-lovers like myself!
first of all, get used to the fact that you will have to settle for stuff you are not necessarily used to - vegetarian food is often differently interpreted here. instead of getting leafy lettuce-based salads (lettuce is not really common here... and forget about fresh spinach leaves altogether) expect dishes such as:
1. cabbage based meals - either cooked or raw (smells bad, tastes fine!)
2. chopped salads - usually with cabbage, raw veggies, beans, pulses etc, maybe some couscous, rice, or cold pasta thrown in - served in either a vinaigrette sauce or a mayonnaise-based sauce
3. other common veggie dishes: quiche, cooked tofu in a curry sauce (polish version i.e. lame and not very spicy at all ;) or tomato sauce, lasagna, crepes (a polish speciality!)
4. vegetarian food to look out for in normal polish restaurants:
your best friends will be soups (poles love em!). just watch out as some soups, such as "zurek" - a white sour rye soup, are traditionally served with sausage and boiled egg. also look out for pierogi which are mostly served with vegetarian fillings such potatoes, white cheese, cabbage, mushrooms, and best of all - fresh fruit! yumm!
if you want to avoid meat related stuff altogether, make sure you get your pierogi with sour cream or just butter, as often they are served with bits of bacon or skwarki - small bits of fried... lard? i'm not sure how to describe it :)
as for particular vegetarian restaurants in krakow you've got:
Chimera - an amazing salad bar with a great outdoor patio and cellar
Vega - has a few locations, great vegetarian cheap restaurant
Greenway - very similar to above!
Momo - vegetarian, vegan, organic, yummmyy
hope that helps! enjoy :)
well actually the milk bars are not as dirt cheap as they used to be and i haven't been to one in ages! but the one i used to always go to was the one on grodzka near poselska street. it's decent! just stick to the vegetarian menu, as i don't always trust those scary ladies in the back to handle their meat very carefully! ;)
Are you talking about the guy that sells grilled sausages under the bridge, late at night?
I ate them last year, and they were amazing!
Anything new that's worth trying in the Old Town area? I am planning to go to the Jarema restaurant, specializing in the east of the border cuisine. Any other suggestions?
haha yeah you got the right sausage guy! it's the best after a late night in the clubs on wielopole ;)
to be honest i've never even heard of Jarema, but after a quick google just now i think i remember a friend telling me about it, and that it was quite nice! i just have bad memories of restaurants on plac matejki as the one and only time i had some polish food on that square, a homeless guy sitting right behind me started unloading his previous meal very loudly and violently just feet away from me!! gross!! i was totally put off my pierogi!! :)
anyway, new in the old town i would suggest checking out Wesele. If you've heard of or been to Miod Malina on Grodzka, you'll be happy to know that because of the massive tourist takeover there (and rightly so, miod malina rocks) the owners decided to expand onto the main Market Square. unlike miod malina though, wesele serves only polish food (miod malina has italian too) in a rustic environment. if you know the play or even the movie "wesele" by wyspianski, you'll be interested to know that it really influenced the decor!
another unique place, though not in the Old Town but in Kazimierz, is Pierogi u Vincenta - a fantastic pierogi joint with a great menu of the usuals plus some new and more experimental ingredients (i heard they used to even serve pierogi with chocolate inside!!?). cool van gogh inspired decor too :)
just opened a new location on bozego ciala - check it out :)
hope this helps!
well, in general kazimierz is more of a place to go to relax in those pseudo-bohemian cafes and bars :) but there are a few things you have to check out there, food-wise, apart from the pierogies at Vincent's!:
- zapiekankas on plac nowy! a zapiekanka is a kind of pizza baguette. it's not terribly polish, but i have to admit it's some of the best late night junk food i've ever had!! there are a few places on that square that serve it - make sure to check it out with: onion and garlic sauce, plain (mushrooms + ketchup is plain here!) with chives, or my fave - spinach and oscypek (polish smoked sheeps cheese!). you can get that one at Bar Ha-Ha on the south side of the square. there's also a sausage stand there that is not half-bad!
in kazimierz you also have that Momo organic/vegan restaurant i mention below in the vegetarian post.
otherwise, here there is nothing that original that you can't have elsewhere in the world - steaks, italian, sushi, etc etc
there is one place i keep meaning to try, but to be honest it's kind of pricey for me :)
a new cuban restaurant called buena vista - it looks pretty good!
now apart from that in kazimierz, you have to visit at least two of the best and most typically-kazimierz bars/cafes here:
if you go to singer and then go have a zapiekanka... well then you can consider yourself a local ;)