FORGETTING time but not good dining.
photo: Ján Svrček
Where: Žilinská 4
Tel: 0903-246 226
Open: restaurant 11:00-22:00, lounge 10:00-24:00
English menu: Yes
Rating: 9 out of 10
I WOULD probably never have come across Preego restaurant if it had not been for a recommendation from a gourmet friend. Hidden at the back of the Slovenský rozhlas (Slovak Radio) building, surrounded by construction sites and parking lots, it keeps you pleasantly surprised from the beginning till the end.
The name of the restaurant sounds very Italian, and therefore I expected a menu dominated by pizza and pasta; this was not to be. The selection of dishes would better be described as Mediterranean, mixing French and Italian style cuisine. It could even be called European, as it includes a Greek salad, grilled oštiepok (Slovak smoked sheep-cheese) and salmon.
Both starters and main dishes include a generous selection of vegetarian food, which is rather exceptional for Bratislava's restaurants. My friend from Stockholm and I decided for two classics with a little extra - chicken breast with mozzarella and basil sauce, and grilled sole with lime sauce. Not only were the meals delicious, but they were presented in a very aesthetic arrangement with fresh vegetables.
The mixed vegetable salad we ordered as a side dish had a very tasty dressing of honey and herbs, but was neutral enough not to dominate the food. The tiramisu I had as a grand finale had just the right amount of liqueur and was topped with whipped cream and a strawberry. The food arrived quickly and we were served by professional waiters - the dream of every restaurant visitor.
Pronounced in Slovak as two words - Pre ego - the name of the restaurant means 'for (your) ego' which is a very fitting name for a place where they serve you marvellous food that is a pleasure for both your stomach and your eyes.
It is refreshing that besides the many different chicken, pork and beef dishes, Preego also offers lamb, rabbit and veal. There are many tempting offers among the desserts as well, but if there is one that sounds irresistible besides my tiramisu, it is the poppy seed parfait. Since the asparagus season is finished for this year, the menu will be enriched with new specialities from next week on.
An important detail about Preego is its interior design. The combination of black and white gives the room a very elegant feeling, and its division into smaller units offers a sense of privacy. The arrangement of the rooms is complemented by statues and fresh flowers. The owners of the restaurant must have had courage to open such an exclusive place away from the city centre, and even more so in this particular location. Because the view from the windows could have been appalling, white curtains have been hung throughout the entire restaurant, cutting down the day light and giving the impression that Preego is a dinner rather than a lunch place. There is something relaxing about forgetting time and the outside world.
The only disturbing element is a large TV screen you see as soon as you enter, which ruins the chill-out atmosphere of the place. Luckily, though, it is not exactly part of the restaurant itself, but in a kind of lounge. While after-work parties in restaurant lounges may take a while to catch on in Bratislava, Preego has a good chance of establishing itself as a hip place within the near future.