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Bratislava International cuisine

Aušpic- You get it all from your seat: the subtle sounds of the Danube rushing by and the romantic sight of the sun setting behind the castle. Its natural setting on the Petržalka bank of the Danube is Aušpic's greatest strength. The service and the food, including shark salad and calamari, are excellent. $$. CC: yes. Eng. menu: yes. Res: yes. Viedenská 24. % 850-916. <11:00-22:00, M-Su.

Casablanca- Ignore the weird crystal art and the ice cream parlor windows: This restaurant at the top of Koliba hill offers up a classy menu and fantastic food. The meals are traditional and very French, but the fish and the wine list have a Moroccan accent. Try the creamy onion tart served on a bed of lettuce (lettuce!); or the smoked salmon or beef medallions in red wine, pepper or mushroom sauces. The prices - like the menu in English, German and French - are Western, but the food makes it money well spent. $$$. CC: Yes. Eng. menu: Yes. Res: Yes. Jeséniova 53. % 371-767. < 12:00-24:00 M-F; 18.00-24.00, Sat, Su.

Čárda Kormorán- Bratislava's best salad bar, with 22 items including fresh crispy lettuce and three different dressings, is reason enough to venture out to this modern restaurant on a lake in Petržalka. The menu is essentially Hungarian with a few other rare items thrown in, such as T-bone steak and roasted cod. With menus available in five languages and a talented Gypsy band laying away, it is easy to get comfortable. $$$. CC: no. Eng. menu: no. Res: yes. Tematinská 7. % 828-252. < 11:30-23:00.

Champion Pizza- There is about enough room for 10 people to squeeze in at the tables, but Champion's strength is delivery service. It isn't Domino-speedy, but its as quick as local delivery gets - expect to wait at least 30 minutes. The delivery service costs 30-50 Sk depending on location. A low-priced variety of pizzas ranging from 520 grams for 45 Sk to 1,910 grams for 195 Sk. They also serve calzones, "big dogs," beer and cola. Sundays bring 10% discounts on pizzas. $. CC: no. Eng. menu: no. Res: no. Komárnická ul. % 522-7395. < 10-22, M-Su.

Chang Cheng- Authentic Chinese dishes and landscape paintings. The fried wantons are excellent. Duck with bamboo shoots, mushrooms in a soy-based sauce. Combination meals give an opportunity to sample every dish, not just hog one for yourself. Peking duck must be ordered a day ahead and serves four. Top off your meal with deep fried bananas, apples or pineapples in honey. The service is impeccable. CC: yes. Eng. menu: yes. Res: yes. Palisády 59.% 322-157 or 322-161 < 11:00 - 23:30 M-Su.

Chez David- This kosher restaurant has been approved by the highest authority - religious. While Bratislava's local rabbi has blessed this place for adhering to strict religious principles, it also toes the line on cleanliness, attention and fresh food. From the home-made hummus to roasted salmon in asparagus sauce, it's hard to go wrong ordering from the menu, which humors you with Yiddish jokes in Slovak, German and English. Watch the cover charge of 27 Sk per person and keep in mind that it is closed on the Sabbath (Fri. evening and all Sat.). $$. CC: yes. Eng. menu: yes. Res. yes. Zámocká 13. % 316-943 or 313-824. < 11:30-16:00, 18:00-22:00 M-Th, Su. 11:30-16:00 Fri.

Corleone Pizzeria- The namesake restaurant moved their pizza operations to a nice, yet more casual spot around the corner. The service is quick and the thin, wide pizzas will fill up a hungry stomach. We highly recommend the loaded vegetarian pizza. Arched roofs create a pleasant atmosphere, especially for smokers. $. Eng. menu: yes. Res: yes. Hviezdoslavovo nám. < 10:00-22:00, M-Su.

Delfín- Decked out with Doric columns and limbless statues, this Greek restaurant has a true Athenian touch. But despite a few staples like real feta cheese, the menu is less than Olympian and you could run to Marathon and back by the time your food is served. $. Eng. menu: no. Res: yes. Ružová dolina 18. % 683-58. < 10:00-22:00, M-Su.

IKEA Restaurant- This place won't redefine anyone's eating habits, but it's just what you might expect from IKEA. Immaculately clean, simply laid out and well-marked. Self-serve roast beef or ham and cheese sandwiches are fresh, though lacking in the taste department. The smoked salmon sandwiches are a special treat. The fresh salad at 10 Sk is crisp and tasty, and the two choices of dressings are free. There's also a choice of the day served by a cook sporting a white, puffy hat. Drop off the children at the day care center at the store and then grab a bite to eat. $. CC: no Eng. menu: no. Res: no. Tomášikova ul. 48.

Jadran Grill- Mediterranean-style food, specializing in kebobs and gyros. Friendly service ad big portions make it worthwhile. If you miss MTV, come here and check out the corner television, where it's always playing. $$. CC: yes Eng. menu: yes. Res: yes. Rybná brána 5. % 10:00-20:30 M-Su.

Jasmin- The owners of this Chinese restaurant have taken a successful formula in Vienna and seamlessly applied it to Bratislava's tastes. Attentive and enthusiastic service combine with delicious cooking, a comfortable atmosphere and a great location to make this one of the city's best values. $$$. CC: yes Eng. menu: yes. Res: yes. Židovská 7. % 531-5182. 11:30-23:00 M-Su.

La Mamma- Easily accessible behind Istropolis. Start with the fresh salad bar, then go for a pizza, ravioli formaggi e panna, or spaghetti bolognese. Compliment it all with wine. Avoid the grilled cutlet. $$. Eng. menu: no. Res: yes. Škultétyho 10. % 271-938. < 11:00-22:00.

Lankai- The Orient fit into a central European wine cellar. Decorations give a Chinese air, but the food reminds you this is neither Beijing nor even Chinatown. Definitely a good place to satisfy that craving for lo mein or a cup of Chinese tea. $$. Eng. menu: yes. Res: no. Obchodná 42. % 332-074. < 11:00-22:00.

Little Caesar's- Without a doubt, the quickest pizza in town worth mentioning is here, nestled on Kmart's ground floor. The fast food chain's pizza and "crazy chlieb" are predictably tasty, if a bit pricey at 40 Sk for a cheap slice. Other options include salads, sandwiches and cookies. $. CC: no. Eng. menu: yes. Res: no. Kamenné nám. 1. < 8-20:00, M-Su.

Los Bandidos- Along the railroad tracks, behind a huge inflated cactus stands this Mexican-style joint. The thatch-roofed and Polynesian-looking decor make for an odd atmosphere. Try the omlette as a starter. The beans are spicy, but the rest of the food is not. Tacos are a misnomer for ketchup on placky. Podkolibská 1. $$. Eng. menu: no. Res: no. < 11:00-5:00.

Music Café Hysteria- A Tex-Mex restaurant, the food is tasty but amounts vary with who is in the kitchen. The margaritas are the best ones in town. Two pool tables and a lively crowd, dancing is not unheard of here. This is a little tricky to find - follow the signs to the Chinese restaurant in Zimný Štadión. $$. CC: no. Eng. menu: yes. Res: yes. Odbojárov 9. < 11:00-2:00 Su-Th, 11:00-5:00 F-Sa.

Orient- Pre-or post-meal gambling at this Greek restaurant. Prime location for people-watching. $$. Eng. menu: yes. Res: no. Nám. SNP 8. % 321-741. < 9:00-24:00.

Pizza Bolero- Bolero offers late-night snackers their only real delivery option after 10 p.m. The pizzas are a bit small and overpriced, ranging from 72 to 182 Sk for pizzas that measure only 28 or 32 cm in diameter. Delivery and pizza boxes are free, but you'll have to slice the pizza yourself. Bolero also delivers turkey, spaghetti, French fries and extras like cigarettes, rum and brandy. $$. CC: no. Eng. menu: no. Res: no. Starohajská cesta 35. % 5811-600. <10:00-2:00, M-Su.

Pizzeria Ciao- Genuine Italian thin-crust pizza, cooked in a wood-burning oven with real tomato sauce, as well as pasta, a varied salad bar, and hefty desserts that make a nice change from palacinky. Service can be slow but the food is worth the wait. $$. CC: no. Eng. menu: no. Res: yes. Trnavská Cesta 37. % 212-109. <11:00-24:00.

Pizzeria Romantica- A hidden treasure below Kramare - 200 meters from Patronka bus station. A large pizza is less than 100 Sk and you can combine any toppings. Ask for the Emil Special (double cheese, ham, salami, onions, fresh mushrooms, oregano and a taste of garlic). Among the best-kept secrets in the country. Brnianská ul. $$. Eng. menu: no. Res: no. < 11:00-22:30.

Pizzeria Umbria- This popular, cheap pizzeria offers a variety of pizzas on fluffy crust. The average price for a pizza is 47 Sk and it fills your belly. You won't be stuffed, but you won't be broke either. Located across from Hotel Kyjev, near Kmart. $. CC: no. Eng. menu: no. Res: no. Špitálaksa 31. < 10-22, M-Sa; 15-22 Su.

Pressbourg- An Alsacian chef gives this Hotel Danube restaurant a savory blend of French-German cuisine. Harp or guitar players mellow the mood in the evenings. Variety and presentation are strong suits here. Asparagus puff pastry and roast pheasant on sauerkraut with smoked bacon and deep-fried grapes are among the most delectable offerings. Save room for sorbet or iced nougat stuffed with cherries. $$$. CC: yes. Eng. menu: yes. Res: no. Rybné nám. 1. % 5340-000. < 12:00-15:00, 18:30-22:30 M-Sa.

Sole Mio- Possibly the snazziest sign in town features the illusion of a flaming oven. Inside this pizzeria, pies are prepped and cooked on a conveyor belt, which makes for cheap entertanment. Usually crowded for lunch, the place often has as many eaters standing as sitting. $. CC: no. Eng. menu: no. Res: no. Grösslingova ul. < 10:00-20:00

Spaghetti & Co. - You would be hard-pressed to find a more convenient place for a pre- or post-opera dinner. The menu is extensive, offering dozens of choices. With any selection, you can count on quality and freshness. If you order a small glass of wine, it will come in a quarter-liter caraffe. The spinach is out of this world. $$$. CC: yes. Eng. menu: yes. Res: yes. Gorkého 1. % 332-303. <

Tirolská Izba- One of the city's best finds. Start with the fabulously creamy mushroom soup and then go with he Turkey shishkabob with pineapples and peaches. If you have a large grop or are in a hurry, be sure to make a reservation. $$. Eng. menu: no. Res: yes. Záhradnícka 73. % 526-5903. <11:00-22:00, M-Sa.

Tokyo- Take a trip to the Orient by sampling sushi and swilling sake. But watch out: the rice wine will knock the stuffing out of your wallet. Impressively authentic Japanese food, such as the tempura (fried fish and vegetables), yaki soba (noodle soup). On special occasions, order a round of sake (rice wine) in the straw-matted back room. The service here is impeccably courteous. $$$. CC: yes. Eng menu: yes. Res: no. Stromová 16. % 375-406. < 11:00-22:30.

Twisteak House- If, when you here "meat and potatos" you don't conjure up images of pork and halušky, this relatively recently opened restaurant will be a welcome oasis. For a juicy side of beef complimented by a baked spud and a hearty helping of veggies, venture down by the Danube, below the Parliament building. This past spring, the successful fish restaurant Rybarský Cech joined forces with Radio Twist to open a spiffy steak restaurant. Prices are higher than average but not exorbitant, with most entrees hovering around 175 Sk. Don't let the less than eager wait staff discourage you, Twisteak is definitely worth a try. $$$. Eng menu: yes. Res: no. Žižkova 1. % 5313-049, 5311-873. < 11:00-23:00.

U Korvína- Real Italian food at Slovak prices: there's even parmesan on the table. There are three options for seating: skip the dull front room with the bar and blaring T.V. and head instead for the intimate courtyard patio out back or for dank, brick-walled wine cellar (which has heated benches in the winter). Some of the pasta must be homemade - try any of the spinach tortellini variations, all around 100 Sk - and all of it is good. The thin-crust pizzas can be disappointing and small. If you get a table, linger over an Italian espresso. $$. CC: no. Eng. menu: no. Res: yes. Banskobystrická 18. % 5334-000.

U Mamičky- Balkan food cooked to order on a charcoal grill. Great steaks and šopsky (Mediterranean with sheep cheese) salad. Excellent English-speaking service. Pricey by Slovak standards, but worth every crown. A bottle of wine from the archives for 600+ Sk. $$$. CC: yes. Eng. menu: no. Res: yes. Michalská 9. % 334-618. < 11:30-23:00.

Umag- Good, wide, thin-crust pizzas with a Croatian coastal flair. The calzone comes with anchovies and an egg. Service is polite, attentive, and swift. A highlight is that the downstairs has separate smoking and non-smoking rooms. Located between the Ministries of Finance and Transportation, Umag gets its share of government lunch-goers. We recommend the Pizza Bratislava with corn (it's better than you'd think), mushrooms, and klobasa. $$. Eng. menu: no. Res: no. Žilinská ul. < 11:00-22:30.

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