Spojka call themselves a restaurant serving “food that makes sense” and we are partial to that. They also claim that they want to connect people over food, be they vegetarians, vegans, or meat lovers. Which we find very practical because so many people have various dietary restrictions now that it only makes sense that there are places where everyone can enjoy good food at the same time.
Just like many other restaurants and bistros, Spojka has its own bread. But: They also have a creative and mindful confectioner that makes desserts that are different – there does not have to be sugar in them, and they can taste like you are not used to. Also, both of their chefs have their own gardens where they grow vegetables that is used in the restaurant – aren’t these great reasons to visit?
Výtoň is a part of Prague just at the riverbank. Just off the famous Náplavka that is another place that the farmer’s markets made into a favourite spot. We happily welcome new shops and spots in this area.
Not just food
Café Louis is a place run by people who love France. They offer coffee and food that can be deemed international, but the extra touch are the products: French cosmetics and for instance this savoury-sweet thing that makes you mouth water even by looking at its cover: Petits caramels à la fleur de sel. We love sweet/savoury combos and the salty salamer and its variations that the French are so very capable of is a star. Drop in for a quick lunch and give this little spot a try!
Jiřák (or “Náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad if you want the whole proper name nobody uses in conversations) has been blooming in the past few years. First, there were the farmer’s markets, and slowly but surely, new cafés and shops have started to pop up all around this big square.
The Sweet Treat
The Donut Shop is a nice, simple concept that works perfectly here. Whereas many cafés and bistros that you can encounter here offer a wide selection of things to eat, this one just has donuts. But what donuts! This family run establishment says they want “to add a taste of heaven to your day” and we tend to believe them. The base they use is a traditional one from a grandma’s archive but they keep coming up with new recipes and variations, so you keep coming back for more.
“Each batch of donuts are made in-store using local, flavor-packed ingredients and our menu is constantly changing with the seasons. We also offer at least four different vegan options daily,” says the family. That is a commendable thing!
Assaggio is specializing in Tuscany cuisine. They of course utilize the Czech ingredients too, so if they get hold of great local mushrooms in Autumn they serve wonderful funghi dishes.
You can also enjoy a good bread they offer and have a crostini with black cabbage, burrata and with a toasted almond or two… Or the tasty panna cotta with a raspberry? Or please just a glass of wine, maybe a wonderful organic one? Your choice. Simplicity is the key and it is good news that we can have this pleasant, authentic place smack dab in the middle of Vinohrady.
Petřín is the romantic hill above Prague where lovers go to spend lush evenings, or mothers stroll with their new babies. Also, there is a big lookout tower right at the top (resembling the much bigger Eiffel Tower), a famous labyrinth, and, since recently, a nice looking café.
The rebuilt charm
Enough of history, let’s go inside. This former substation (a thing that deals with electricity and such) has been rebuilt in a very stylish way and became a café with an industrial charm that nods to its surrounding in several ways (its staircases are a design answer to the said tower, for instance).
Apart from the inevitable coffee they proudly serve light, fresh dishes from local ingredients. You can have a sandwich (on homemade bread!), a wrap or a dessert, all top quality and with a marvellous view of Prague. The approach of the idea of the café is very contemporary, students are invited to use this place to study and generally everyone is welcome in this pretty place. We are fans.
Breakfasts and brunches have become a big thing in Prague. You go with your lover, you go with your coworkers, you go with a client. The breakfast is important for your health, and in the right setting it can become also an enormous pleasure.
Small but pretty
The original Marthy’s Kitchen is a cozy bistro just off Náměstí Míru, and there is another at the riverbank (Smetanovo nábřeží) if you love looking at the water.
The idea is to serve French-inspired breakfast food and also lunches, so you can sample their waffles or crépes in the morning, and a lunch later on… or come much later and have tapas and good wine.
They serve their own pastries and try to make you feel as good as possible. We like their concept overall but the breakfast concept is our favourite!
As we reported earlier bellevue is one of Prague’s top luxury restaurants. Their style was always about a kind of luxury that is elegant, nice and solid.
A culinary star
It has been in business for the impressive 22 years. You might have heard (or even seen) it is closing… but worry. Not. They are going to reopen mere 50 metres away. So you swim, sorry, walk a bit and in a few days – on February 3 to be precise – you can see a new, fresh, but still elegant and adult Bellevue. The new place will be located at Karolíny Světlé 34 and they have a new chef: Nicolas Decherchi, who is a culinary star: He – very quickly – got two Michelin stars for the Paloma restaurant in the town of Mougins at the French riviera and also worked in Průhopnice near Prague, so he knows what the Prague gourmets like. Bellevue is still part of the renowned Zátiší Group that now comprises three spots. The Bellevue, V Zátiší and Mlýnec. We like them all…
Address: Smetana Hotel, Karolíny Světlé 34, Praha 1
Ramen is a small miracle of the Japanese cuisine: A hearty, satisfying, rich soup full of noodles, meat, herbs, and other more or less exotic ingredients, topped with an inviting egg. You need to have the right noodles and a very strong stock to enjoy the slurp-y, lovely goodness, and we are happy to report that yet another pretty spot has appeared on the ramen map of Prague.
Just take the tram
Takumi is near to everything: A few tram stops from the main railway station or Wenceslas Square, at the prosaic but useful Senovážnné square there is the newest addition to the Prague ramen scene. If you are new to ramen please do not feel overwhelmed and ask, or just choose what feels good. A richer. Meatier version, or perhaps something with pea snaps and more on the light side? A lot of the ultra-healthy miso and seaweed, or rather a piece of pork? The choice is yours, and you will be tempted to try other options soon!
Ah, Asian food. Fresh and full of flavors, with satisfying sauces and heavenly herbs. Served in pretty pottery and eaten with chopsticks. The Nest is run by a couple that loves this type of dining and Prague food lovers seem happy to discover what they have to offer.
Coffee, or pho?
The Nest is a place as good for breakfast (coffee, fresh pastries) as for lunch or a light casual dinner (the typical Vietnamese dishes such as the Bun Bo Nam Bo or Pho Bo, or a meat toast which is as inviting as you think, or the popular buddha bowl that is on their lunch menu). There is never enough of these places and Prague slowly but surely becomes a city that is super rich in Asian (fusion) restaurants. Good for everyone!
YOLO stands for “you only live once” and this youthful slogan is the epitome of hedonism. At the YOLO Karlín though, they approach this in a more thoughtful way: they serve good, healthy breakfasts and lunches for the growing community of office workers and creatives in the karlín district who want to eat good.
Old School Baby
Classic Czech dishes such as “koprovka” are stars of this show but the kind people behind YOLO come up with new and less usual dishes too. The rules are proper food, no unnecessary chemical additives, no “empty” dishes ie food of poor nutritional value. Your lunch does not have to be a rushed event where you inhale some fried stuff and run back: after all, you do not live twice, do you?