NICE DRIVEWAY! AN OCCASIONAL COLUMN ON LIFE IN SLOVAKIA

In praise of the jedáleň

Some level of disbelief greets my reports that Slovaks typically dine out on a hearty two-course meal every weekday lunchtime.

Fried cheese has outlived socialism. Some restaurants serve it as the only vegetari-an meal. Fried cheese has outlived socialism. Some restaurants serve it as the only vegetari-an meal. (Source: Kuchárska kniha, Ľudmila Dullová-Horecká - Libor Vozár, vydavateľstvo Osveta, 1983) )

Friends and relatives in western Europe often seem reluctant to believe my positive reports from Slovakia.

Take summer. That it is reliably – sometimes oppressively – hot here from June to September seems not to compute with a popular western image of eastern Europe as somehow eternally snowbound.

Much of Slovakia has been basking in a heatwave since early June. Britain meanwhile has been suffering from storms, floods and temperatures that have struggled to reach double figures.

Yet when I tell relatives in the UK that you could now sleep here with all the windows open – were it not for the current tropical plague of mosquitoes – all I get is an ‘Oh yeah?’

Dining out

A similar level of disbelief greets reports that Slovaks typically dine out on a hearty two-course meal every weekday lunchtime (most Brits are reduced to gulping down a supermarket sandwich at their desk).

In fact, ‘dine out’ is to over-sell the experience very slightly. Most Slovak lunchtime meals are obtained at what is effectively a self-service canteen, or jedáleň.

The rest of this article is premium content at Spectator.sk
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on Spectator.sk
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on Sme.sk and Korzar.sk

Get daily Slovak news directly to your inbox

The processing of personal data is subject to our Privacy Policy and the Cookie Policy. Before submitting your e-mail address, please make sure to acquaint yourself with these documents.

Top stories

National court drama intensifies as polls raise alarm

The first week of the Kuciak murder trial saw key witnesses take the stand while polls do not rule out a far-right victory in February.

Peter Toth

Haščák said the message he got from Kočner was not about Kuciak

Two people have already been punished in the murder case.

Penta financial group partner Jaroslav Haščák was called forward to the court because of a message Kočner had sent to him prior to the Kuciak murder

President Čaputová: The path of hatred leads to tragedies and crimes

The president and the prime minister commemorated the inhabitants of Ostrý Grúň and Kľak killed during WWII.

The commemorative event in the village of Kľak.

Effects of global changes will depend on the policies Slovakia implements

The speed of transformation requires us to plan ahead and be prepared.

Graduates from vocational schools are needed.