Go Slovak! Traditional fare makes a dynamite night out

It's one thing to try Slovakia's national dish, bryndzové halušky - tiny potato dumplings covered with sheep cheese and bacon fat - in a pseudo-Slovak restaurant for tourists, and quite a different experience to dine surrounded by traditional wooden decor, blaring gypsy music and a never-ending flow of wine. Here are five restaurants that try to bring Slovak culinary tradition into the present day: some succeed, while others fail.



It's one thing to try Slovakia's national dish, bryndzové halušky - tiny potato dumplings covered with sheep cheese and bacon fat - in a pseudo-Slovak restaurant for tourists, and quite a different experience to dine surrounded by traditional wooden decor, blaring gypsy music and a never-ending flow of wine. Here are five restaurants that try to bring Slovak culinary tradition into the present day: some succeed, while others fail.


Slovenská reštaurácia - Located near the national theater in the Old Town, this place lays the service and the prices on thick. This may be the only joint in Bratislava that is overstaffed. Food is excellent - especially off the grill - but small portions make one wonder what the grams on the menu really meant. Live accordion and violin music at night. Airy interior with traditional decor makes for a pleasant atmosphere.
Prices: $$$.
Credit Cards: yes.
English menu: yes.
Reservations: yes.
Hviezdoslavovo nám 20, Tel.: 533-4883, Open: 11am-11pm.


Slovenská pivnica- Terrific food. Don't miss the turkey dishes in this cellar across from Tesco department store. The wooden interior and music from Wednesday to Saturday top it off. Don't hang around during the day, as many Mafia-like gorillas crowd the place. Traditional wood décor, music from Wed to Sat top off a well run place.
Prices: $$
CC: yes.
Eng. menu: yes.
Res.: yes.
Dunajská 18 Tel.: 325-465. Open: 11:30am-11pm.


Restaurant Slovakia- A bland place in the unattractive Hotel Nivy near the football stadiums. While the food is fine, good garlic and bean soups, ambience is nil. In summer, try sitting under an umbrella in the parking lot for a good time. The restaurant offers Slovak breakfast, rolls with processed cheese and ham. Yummy.
Prices: $$
CC: yes.
Eng.menu: yes.
Res.: no.
Líščie nivy 3. Tel.: 542-3968. Open: 6:45am-10.30pm.


Pezinská koliba- Don't let the appearance of the uninspiring cuboid building next to the Holiday Inn fool you. This is a great place, all wood inside with sweet dishes like sheep cheese dumplings, or potato pancakes filled with meat and mushrooms. Live music can be loud at times, but the inventive cuisine and delicious Pezinok and Modra wines satisfy.
Prices: $$
CC: yes
Eng.menu: no
Res.: yes.
Bajkalská 24, Tel.: 521-1249. Open: 10am-10pm.


Slovenská reštaurácia- A nice place in the evening around sunset, located near Horský park up on the castle hill. Not many foreigners find this gem, which is part of its charm if you can read the menu. The food is homey, cooked by real Slovak mothers.
Prices: $$
CC:no.
Eng. menu: no
Res.: yes.
Búdkova street 39, Tel.: 372-842 Open: 12am-11pm.

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