Hours:Daily 6:00 - 22:30
English menu:Yes (and German)
Credit Cards:Visa, Euro, MC, AmEx
Many people avoid hotel restaurants because they worry that they will be tourist traps or overpriced. This is definitely not so with the Botel Grácia, located on the Danube River on the road by the river leading west out of Bratislava. It has also been a long time since we have seen such an imaginative and tempting menu.
It appears that the excellent dining room at the Botel Grácia is a well-kept secret as there were only two other parties the evening we were there. The restaurant seats 50, and the pretty dťcor and pleasant table settings are done in blue and violet hues accented by romantic lighting.
The restaurant serves an impressive variety of seafood, fresh water fish and meat. The seafood and fish include shark (cooked with mushrooms, it is the most expensive seafood dish on the menu at 235 Sk), octopus, shrimp, pike, trout, carp and calamari (the least expensive seafood dish at 78 Sk). The meats include turkey dishes (ranging from 115 to 142 Sk), beef specialities (95-176 Sk), veal concoctions (117-132 Sk) and pork fare (91-146 Sk).
The least expensive dish on the menu is fried mushrooms (51 Sk). Unfortunately, it and the mixed salad with egg (68 Sk) are the only choices for vegetarians. The Chateaubriand Grácia is the most expensive meal (at 309 Sk) served with sour cream and mushrooms.
The unusual array of dishes and full descriptions made it difficult to choose what we would eat that evening. The rybacia polievka (fish soup - 44 Sk) was not available, so we tried the polievka faraón (garlic soup - 33 Sk). We wished it had been more garlicky. An interesting appetizer, however, was the Banan Escambray (34 Sk), a banana wrapped in ham with melted smoked cheese and ketchup. We tasted it to be adventurous, but were pleasantly surprised how good it was!
Madeline tried the teľacie rezne s lososom (132 Sk), two tender pieces of veal served with smoked salmon and mandarin orange slices, another winning combination. Her dining companion had the roštenka sandberg (95 Sk), a large, juicy piece of beef in a mouth-watering sauce composed of very fresh mushrooms, sausage and bacon in a barbecue-style sauce.
The portions were generous, and the service was excellent. But we had no room for dessert. Dinner need not be more expensive here than anywhere else in the city. Our meals cost 225 Sk each and included an appetizer or soup, a main course, and wine.
Paul Zendzian and Madeline Vadkerty are the authors of Bon Appetit, Dobrú Chuť, Bratislava!, which is available at select bookstores and news stands.
20. Nov 1996 at 0:00 | Paul Zendzian and Madeline Vadkerty