DON'T let the dull facade fool you.
photo: Brian Jones
Where: Fajnorovo nábrežie 2
Tel: 02/5263-6777 / Open: 9:00-24:00 (summer), 10:00-22:00 (winter) /
English menu: Yes /
Reservations: Yes /
Rating: 7 out of 10
IT IS unfortunate for the restaurant MS Danubius that it is located in the concrete and smoke-glass building of Osobný Prístav - the place on the banks of the Danube where you buy tickets for boat trips to Vienna and Budapest. It is also unfortunate for hungry passers-by that this appalling edifice hides from them a lovely little restaurant that serves up good food.
Once you get past the building's exterior, the interior and the open-air terrace are a pleasant surprise. The first is highly stylish, and the latter allows you to enjoy the fresh breeze coming from the river. The wooden interior, with sea blue accents, is designed in the shape of a boat, with a large marine bell at the entrance. Whether you choose to dine in the air-conditioned dining room or on the breezy terrace, you will enjoy a rich view of the river.
The starter plates on the menu, with delicacies such as prosciutto with watermelon, are quite expensive. Conversely, the four soups are quite reasonable in price and filling as well. The broccoli cream soup is thick but refreshing. The halászlé, a traditional Hungarian spicy fish soup, is quite tasty, but would be better made with whole spices instead of powdered ones.
The menu offers Slovak and international cuisine, including venison and specialities of the Danube region - many with fitting names, such as the few dishes designed for two people to share: the Blue Danubius (carp in dough made with wine, grilled zander, and catfish in a spicy sauce) and the Golden Danubius (fried chicken breast with blue cheese, pork steak with mushrooms, beef in spicy sauce, and boiled vegetables).
For vegetarians, there are eight meatless dishes, mainly different vegetables baked with cheese on top. The mushrooms filled with blue cheese and baked with eidam works well, but we found the broccoli covered with melted smoked cheese a little hard to chew.
There are 14 different fishes cooked all kinds of ways. Each one we tried was delicious and looked like it had been pulled straight from the Danube that morning. The Danubius trout - breaded, lightly baked, and served on a bed of bits of fried bacon, onions, and mushrooms - has a very soft texture and the different flavours were very well balanced.
Furthermore, the restaurant's many poultry dishes should not be discounted. The fantasy dish called Bratislava Castle - grilled chicken breasts filled with spinach, sheep cheese, and garlic, served with mashed potatoes lightly fried in onions - was simply delicious.
So don't let the exterior put you off eating here. If you wait for sundown the torches and kerosene lamps get lit, and you are in for a romantic evening.
9. Jun 2003 at 0:00 | Zuzana Habšudová