Hungry in Hungary
This post is potentially not helpful because… Every single restaurant I tried in Budapest was delicious. I am convinced that you can stroll into any restaurant in the city and be satisfied with their culinary concoctions. BUT in case I was simply lucky, here are the places that I tried and loved.
I’m a vegetarian who occasionally consumes seafood (Pescatarians FTW!). I was pleasantly surprised at all of the vegetarian and vegan choices that Budapest had to offer!
New York Café
The Yums: hot lemonade & Hungarian sacher torta (chocolate cake)
The only restaurant that I planned was this gem, a tourist attraction and local sweet spot. This cafe is more famous for its golden, baroque interior than it is its dessert, and that’s saying something! As I stood in line for a table, tourists entered for moments only to snap a photo and leave. I personally wanted to experience the luxurious atmosphere provided by delicate murals and a private pianist, so I had a drink and a cake. Here’s a shout out to the waiter who served me their signature hot lemonade with red pepper flakes when he realized a sore throat had stolen my voice– the Hungarian people were so kind! He also suggested the Hungarian sacher torta, the cake pictured below.
Bocadillo café – Astoria
The Yums: strawberry soup, veggie burger, sweet potato chips
When I sat down by myself at 10pm on a Friday night, I had no idea that I was about to eat the best veggie burger I’ve ever had in my life! (And I’ve had a lot of veggie burgers!) Here at Bocadillo I ordered a chilled strawberry soup as a starter. My main course was their garden veggie burger served on a pretzel bun with sweet potato chips on the side.
Istanbul Kebab – District VIII
The Yums: falafel and veggies
I arrived in Budapest late on a Thursday night, craving some real food after a day of travel and airport food. My airbnb host suggested this kebab joint in the neighborhood. I had falafel and a veggie plate of tomato, feta, and olive, plus a Fanta to drink, all for the Hungarian equivalent of 5 euros. The portions were large, the food was fresh, and the meal was so cheap. If I was a local, I would totally hit up that spot weekly!
Platz Budapest – Across from St. Stephen’s Basilica
The Yums: grilled goat cheese salad and homemade fuscilli with shrimp and clams
My friend and I were skeptical when choosing a restaurant in the center of a touristic neighborhood. Annnnnd then we were pleasantly surprised! If anything, I think Platz is a hipster haven. Reclaimed wood lines the walls, and flowers climb up the stairs. Lit by a combination of natural light, custom made bottle lights, and fairy lights, Platz is a destination for craft beer, coffee, wine, and juice. According to their website at least. But according to me, it’s a great place for food too!
Café Gottier – Gellert neighborhood
The Yums: apple garden cappuccino and smoked salmon sandwich
After having just expolored the gorgeous Gellert Hill (Budapest itinerary coming up next!), I needed some fuel to recover from the great climb to the top. I had passed by the cafe on my way through the neighborhood and made a mental note that it looked quaint and quiet. When I entered the cafe upon my return, I immediately noticed it was themed in the style of Alice in Wonderland! There were murals and photos from the story, and some menu items were Carroll-themed as well. I ordered their apple garden cappuccino, which was super unique. I’ve had many flavored coffee drinks, but never apple. I had to have it. I enjoyed that while waiting for my smoked salmon sandwich. A weird combo on my part, but oh well!
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