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Jun 26, 2014 07:44 AM

Kafana/кафана in the East Village

this place doesn't get much mention here, but my second visit here was excellent (first visit was 3 yrs ago)...two varieties of pork and pork/lamb sausage, a tomato/cucumber/feta salad (esp fresh), a smoked trout, good bread and pepper sauce, and an interesting wine list from Eastern Europe...

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  1. That reminds me, I gotta go back for fried smelts, bacon wrapped dates, chicken livers, and drinks. This is a good summertime place to snack and chill.

    1. Yeah, the last time l was there was a couple of years ago, and it impressed me; been meaning to get back ever since. Thanks for the inspiration!

      1. I haven't been there for a while, but I, too, enjoyed the food, drink, and atmosphere.

        1. I have refused to go here, but once chatted with the manager or owner.

          My contention is that it caters to mostly non-Serbian/Croat people.

          I have read good things about it non-the less.

          There are places in the boroughs that are more of the full package, meaning, it is where the locals who derive from Tito's Yugoslavia, eat.

          This is a manhattan board so I cannot reveal where these places are.

          I was unable to go to Serbia 10 years ago, for they barred NATO members from travel, but had a wonderful time in one of their bars, near my friends home in Slovenia. I can almost duplicate that here, almost, the bar scene with all serbians.

          As for food, that is a certainty too, along with Serbian live music, on Saturdays.

          2 Replies
          1. re: jonkyo

            >This is a manhattan board so I cannot reveal where these places are.

            Chowhound has relaxed its restrictions on cross-board posts. When recommendations flow naturally out of a conversation like this one, you should feel free to share them here even if they're from outside Manhattan.

            1. re: squid kun

              For starters, there are quite a few of Montenegrin exclusive (members only) clubs in Astoria, who actually had the flag of Montenegro up during the first days of the fanatical inspiring World Cup. They were tamer places in comparison to the many Brazilian venues in that same area, during the world cup that is.

              On Broadway there was a place, LIC, that called itself Marshalls. It closed, due to ethnic fights, but reopened as Monty. I was in there, and discovered this was Serbian by asking the waitress at the bar, if she was from Balkans, due to her accent.

              She stated Serbia. Then proceeded to tell me that the Serbian food is not on the menu, but ask for it, such as "chivapi". Then she stated Saturday nights they have live Serbian music.

              Marshalls reopened before I arrived to NYC in late 2011, but appearing to look a bi like an Italian restaurant, from the street.

              I happened into it with a friend one weekend, after visiting the Noguchi Museum just west in LIC. What a nice discovery.

              Here is an interesting Op Ed that apparred in the NT Times. in 2012, after I had discovered Marshell's new manifestation, but knew little else.

              I have not been there in since 2012, but it is a so nice and friendly place. (


              That is a good start for this map into Balkan in the Boroughs. It was my introduction. There may be others reading this that can offer information, as well.

              If you wander around Forest Ave, a bit near the Polish Delis, and more, there are Romanian and Montenegrin owned bakery and a cafe. That will give you some clues.

          2. We were introduced to the place by some Serbian friends and have been many times. The gibanica (cheese pie) appetizer is quite good, as is their hot bread "with creamy spread" (Lepinja Sa Kajmakom). They also have a bean stew with smoked baby back ribs which is quite tasty. My personal favorite, being an ethnic Romanian, is their cevapi, a lamb and beef grilled sausage which is essentially the equivalent of Romanian mititei. They also have a good sour cherry pie, when available. The wine list, as you say, is indeed an interesting one, and not expensive I am particularly fond of the Vranac Barrique from Montenegro.
            Also, the mood of the place is pretty festive.