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Kráter - nice food, shame about the atmosphere

Bratislava boasts a wealth of conservative Slovak-style pubs and nightspots, but few real alternatives to the norm. Kráter, a recently-opened mixture of pub, café and disco, is an interesting exception. But although the food is great and served late, Kráter attracts a few too many annoying 'alternative' clients to its 'alternative' schtick.
Located the shadow of the Slovenská Sporiteľňa bank on Vysoká Street , Kráter is an airy and trendy hangout only a few steps from the Hviezda and Tatra cinemas and the Nová Scéna theatre. With a kitchen that serves meals until 3 in the morning, Kráter is a convenient place to get a bite after an outing.


Kráter - Café interior, designed by architect Roman Hájek and the A.E.F.H Architects group.
Courtesy of Kráter

Address: Vysoká 14, 07-317-408
Prices: Sk SK
Cusine:International
English menu: Yes
Reservations: Recommended
Hours:Cafe: Su-Thur 9:30-03:00; Pub: from 18:00; Fri-Sat 9:30-005:00
Credit Cards: No
Recommended: Yes


Bratislava boasts a wealth of conservative Slovak-style pubs and nightspots, but few real alternatives to the norm. Kráter, a recently-opened mixture of pub, café and disco, is an interesting exception. But although the food is great and served late, Kráter attracts a few too many annoying 'alternative' clients to its 'alternative' schtick.

Located the shadow of the Slovenská Sporiteľňa bank on Vysoká Street , Kráter is an airy and trendy hangout only a few steps from the Hviezda and Tatra cinemas and the Nová Scéna theatre. With a kitchen that serves meals until 3 in the morning, Kráter is a convenient place to get a bite after an outing.

The 'café' section is the first thing that greets you as you walk in to Kráter. The room is simply laid out with bare tables , chairs and small blue lamps. The bar strives for a functionalist feel, with lots of glass and shiny metal.

An ultra-modern mirrored stairway leads down to the pub section, which hosts live concerts twice a week and a disco every night. On Saturday nights, the place is packed with people watching the 'adult entertainment' on offer, usually a late night striptease. The clientele is mostly thirty-ish beer drinkers who weigh each other up with frankly evaluative stares. One of Kráter's greatest attractions is its food. The menu is surprisingly cheap and by the endof October it caters to those with a taste for something out of the ordinary like ostrich meat and snails. For starters, try the "Billy Ocean"prawn salad for 58 Sk or the "Onion Kiss" French onion soup with egg and toast for 25 Sk.

The menu (and its tedious pop music wordgames) moves on to staples like "Dinner with Tina" turkey breats with ham, cheese and fruit for 103Sk, or the "James Brown" turkey steak with figs for 102 Sk. You might also check out the six vegetarian meals or the "Chumbawamba" Mexican spicy beefsteak for 149 Sk. As far as meals for two go, the "Genesis" platter, which includes stuffed turkey breasts, sirloin fillet and pork chops with fruit, rice and french fries (386 Sk) is a winner. Another knockout from the "Greatest Hits" (otherwise 'Grejtst hits') section of the menu is the chicken sauté in white wine, cream and mushrooms for 97 Sk.

Although the meat meals come with a salad garnish known as "obloha" - a mix of corn, peas, tomatoes and sauerkraut - these vegetable portions are rather small, and you may want to order one of Kráter's fresh salads like the "Banket," a mixed salad with slices of ham and chicken bathed in cream for 97 Sk.

Despite the great food, Kráter still manages to raise the hackles of guests sensitive to the company in which they drink. The service staff is sloppy and disinterested for the most part, while many of those they serve are wanna-be trendsetters. In the end, Kráter is great as a change of pace from smoky pubs with yellow walls, but a few nights there will probably send you running back to your usual hangout with a fresh appreciation for its time-tested charms.

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