NOT OUR PICK

Cozy atmosphere can't salvage dinner at the Pyramid Club

It is always an interesting experience trying to guess from its name what a Slovak restaurant will look like inside. When some friends invited my husband and I for dinner at the "Pyramid Club," just for a second I pictured attentive waiters bringing unimaginable delicacies to tables along the Nile River. But I've found it is unwise to approach a dining experience in this country with preconceptions, as the Pyramid Club proved once again.
Archaeologists stand a better chance of finding a new pharaoh's tomb than customers have of locating this place. Try walking along Trnava's bustling pedestrian street from the center toward the train station, and keeping your eye out for a blue neon sign in an alley.

Address: Vajanského 22, 917 00 Trnava
Hours: Daily 11-23.
Cuisine: Slovak
Prices: Sk Sk
Reservations: Yes
English menu: No (Pictures)
Credit Cards: No
Recommended: Go for the comfy chairs, but skip the food.

It is always an interesting experience trying to guess from its name what a Slovak restaurant will look like inside. When some friends invited my husband and I for dinner at the "Pyramid Club," just for a second I pictured attentive waiters bringing unimaginable delicacies to tables along the Nile River. But I've found it is unwise to approach a dining experience in this country with preconceptions, as the Pyramid Club proved once again.

Archaeologists stand a better chance of finding a new pharaoh's tomb than customers have of locating this place. Try walking along Trnava's bustling pedestrian street from the center toward the train station, and keeping your eye out for a blue neon sign in an alley.

Adjoining an uneven, pot-holed parking lot is the bland concrete building which houses the restaurant. Still cheerful - mind you, many restaurants in Slovakia are deceiving from the outside - we descended some stairs into a surprisingly warm atmosphere. Soft blue neon seemed to bathe the room in a calming glow.

Comfy navy chairs were a nice change from the stiff wooden ones found in our other favorite haunts in Trnava. After sinking down and ordering drinks, I took in the atmosphere. This was a little difficult since the light on the table was too bright, making it seem like a desk. Other than that, though, I liked the contrast of a corrugated aluminum ceiling with plush cloth chairs and wooden tables - certainly unique.

The menu had pictures displaying the food, which is great for non-Slovak speakers. At first look, the food seemed quite appealing with a decent selection of pork, turkey, and beef dishes. No fried cheese here! The pepper steak grabbed my attention until I noticed the odd grey color of the sauce. Instead, we decided on a shish kebab with rice and Risotto with vegetables and pork.

Dinner arrived in about 20 minutes, not too much of a yawner for Slovakia. The food, however, raised some eyebrows, and those not in awe but shock. The pictures, to put it mildly, were a bit better presented. The risotto was half-heartedly dumped on the plate with the little pickled garnish practically falling over the rim.

The kebabs, on closer examination, had been deep fried. Deep fried pork on a stick, with bits of onion and bacon. I struggled to get the meat off my skewer, hands greasy, and the meat stiff. Even the curry rice that came with it couldn't salvage the meal. It was plain steamed white rice with chili powder dusted on top.

The pork was dry, overcooked, quite unpalatable. I tasted my husband's risotto and squirmed when I imagined what any good Italian would think of this poor imitation.

The radio-station background music (thumpy thumpy thumpy) didn't help the over-all mood at our table. We decided to skip dessert and coffee and hurry home. Dinner for four, without appetizers, dessert or tip came to 560 Sk - not much of a bargain for the little food we could stomach.

Still, I would recommend going to the Pyramid Club for drinks and a comfortable atmosphere to talk among friends. Skip the food.

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