After a long day strolling down Moscow’s boulevards, climbing to the rooftops of its vast churches, exploring the many halls of its famed galleries, and battling the crowds on Red Square, you will no doubt need something to eat. And you’ll be in for a treat, as Moscow’s gastronomic scene has developed in leaps and bounds over the past few years. Countless new restaurants, from street food stalls to gleaming fine-dining establishments, have sprung up all over the city. But where to go? Here are our recommendations of Moscow’s top 10 restaurants.
The oldest club in the city is also the coolest. With a WW2 bunker as its dance floor and a smashing restaurant serving up the best accompaniments and filling meals to the vodka shots, its no wonder the “ mushroom-eater” club (as it is translated in English) is a firm local favourite. In summer, a wonderful veranda provides a refreshing haven to the sizzling hot air of the dance floor. The stage at the back of the bunker hosts nothing but the best of bands, playing everything from rock to techno.
Starters range from 5- 22 euros, mains 11-55 euros. Wine starts from 10 euros for a glass, 54 euros for a bottle. Tasting menu costs 140 euros.
Location: Smolenskaya Square, 3
Two enormous wooden stoves form the centerpoint of this award-winning restaurant. Just as the stove is one of Russia’s most recognisable and homely symbols, Severiane’s dishes conjure up wholesome tastes of home, like cured salmon with smoked sour cream and aromatic chicken soup. Most of the main dishes are cooked in the stove, creating simple, bold flavours such as Dagestan lamb fillet with celery, or Moroccan octopus. Even the menu descriptions are unfussy. Severiane also has a breakfast menu with delights such as potato rostis with cured salmon, and crab omelette. The aroma from the stoves fills the restaurant, complemented with smoky grey interiors broken here and there by splashes of red, decor as bold and simple as the food.
Starters and soups range between 6-15 euros, mains 10-23 euros, and breakfast 5-10 euros.
Location: Bolshaya Nikitskaya, 12
Legendary chef Aram Mnatsakanov first began his Italian cuisine endeavour in St Petersburg and has since transported his well executed but simple dishes to the capital. Upon reading the menu, you may not be surprised by anything out of the ordinary. But Probka does not set out to surprise or challenge, but to encourage a relaxed and enjoyable meal made with exceptional quality ingredients. Mnatsakanov sources locally where possible, but the rest of the ingredients are from Italy. Dishes include charcuterie with artichokes and truffles, Neapolitan pizza with salmon carpaccio, tagliatelle with duck ragout, and cod with olives and tomatoes. Diners can also enjoy the catch of the day or sharing platters of lamb, beef or octopus. Probka’s decor is characterised by muted pastel and stone with lots of natural light, and in summer a beautiful terrace is opened.
Starters and soups cost between 3.5-21 euros, pizzas and pastas 8-28 euros, meat and fish mains 12.5-36 euros. Wine by the glass starts from 5.5 euros, by the bottle from 28 euros.
Location: Tsvetnoi Boulevard, 2
Considered one of the world’s 50 best restaurants, the Twins Garden is involved in the whole process from seed to plate and aims to renew peoples’ connection to regional food. 70% of ingredients are sourced from the chef Berezutsky brothers’ farm in Kaluga Region. Dishes include dumplings with veal, caviar and black garlic, birch-roasted catfish with carrots and grapefruit, and lamb with pickled pepper and aubergine. A set menu is offered at the chef’s table, proceeds of which go to the dog rescue centre on the farm. In the future, diners will even be able to take seeds home with them to plant their own vegetables. Wine connoisseurs will be in their element: Twin Gardens’ wine list contains over 1000 wines. Decor consists of minimal onyx, leather, wood and metal, with enormous windows and a panoramic veranda providing an unobstructed view over Moscow.
Starters cost from 6-12 euros, mains 7-31 euros. A set menu at the chef’s table costs 114 euros.
Location: Strastnoy Boulevard, 8a
Remy Kitchen Bakery pioneers a fusion of French, Italian, Mediterranian and Far Eastern cuisine, as well as combining a restaurant and bakery under one roof. Remy takes a minimalistic approach to its dishes and you will find no more than five or six ingredients on a plate. Dishes include sashimi of scallops with lemon, chilli and tarragon, lamb shank with cauliflower, chickpeas and mushroom ragout, and sweet potato soup with crab. Remy offers delicious vegetarian dishes such as artichokes with vegetable salsa and yoghurt. Fresh bread and pastries are available to take away. Minimalist furniture, a beautifully tiled floor, and warm green, grey, and gold tones complement the simple but delicious food.
Starters and sides range from 5.5 -16 euros; mains from 11-20 euros.
Location: Malaya Bronnaya, 2
Named after a fire-breathing dragon from ancient Russian folk tales, ‘Gorynych’ is an apt name for this restaurant - floral folk motifs line the walls and ceiling, and smoky metal, dark wood and curved stone resemble a dragon’s cave, stocked with huge fire-breathing ovens and open grills. A varied menu including Asian, South American and European influences has been refined by the restaurateurs’ trips around the world. The menu is based on hearty and sophisticated favourites such as spaghetti vongole, Tom Yam soup, and smoked brisket with pickles and jalapenos; diners can even compile their own grilled seafood platter. Gorynych’s menu has extensive vegetarian options and also offers a mouthwatering breakfast section.
Starters cost from 5-16 euros, mains from 7-25 euros. Wine by the glass is from 7 euros, by the bottle from 56 euros.
Location: Rozhdestvensky Boulevard, 1
Head chef Anatoly Kazakov is one of the younger generation’s best chefs, and has joined forces with Vladimir Mukhin to transform modern Russian cuisine in this elegant and fashionable restaurant. Seasonal ingredients from all corners of the country, from the Black Sea to the Far East, are crafted into artfully beautiful and pure-tasting dishes containing no more than four ingredients. Traditional Russian favourites thread themselves through the entire menu, in dishes such as cured trout with sorrels, golden beetroot with coho salmon roe and clam sauce, and veal cutlet with cucumber ketchup. Panoramic windows overlooking Moscow’s Garden Ring give Selfie a cosmopolitan and bustling feel, and the elegant interior almost seems more like a modern art gallery than a restaurant.
Starters cost from 6.5-28 euros, meat and fish mains from 10.5-37 euros. The tasting menu costs 85 euros plus 43 euros for complementary wine. Wines cost from 50 euros for a bottle, 11 for a glass.
Location: Novinsky Boulevard, 31
Located on the top floor of TsUM, Moscow’s opulent department store, Buro Tsum offers luxury fusion cuisine with a gorgeous view over the capital’s cityscape. From delicate flavours to punchy tangy dishes, Buro Tsum’s menu darts around the tastebuds and around the globe. Diners can enjoy tuna carpaccio with lime miso, halloumi with tomato harissa, fillet steak with black chanterelles and truffles, and their meat or fish of choice cooked on the ‘lion grill’; or maybe Russian staples with a twist like borscht and smoked plum, or pike-perch with avocado wasabi. Buro Tsum’s decoration perfectly suits its menu, eclectic but ornate from floor to ceiling, with multiple textures and patterns adorning walls and furniture.
Starters range from 7-19 euros, mains from 8-35 euros.
Location: Petrovka Ulitsa, 2
This new restaurant offering authentic Georgian cuisine was inspired by head restaurateur Andrei Dellos’ travels during his youth. Head chef Mamiya Jojua, and his mother Nana as sous-chef, recreate flavours from their home in Tbilisi. Diners can enjoy warming and hearty Georgian dishes such as lobio (a thick bean soup packed with herbs and spices), khachapuri ajaruli (a bread boat stuffed with suluguni cheese, butter and egg), lamb marinated in hot pepper, garlic, herbs and nuts, or a plentiful range of charcoal-grilled shashlyk dishes. Also on offer are indulgent Georgian desserts and sweet treats. Fully aware that to transport a cuisine from its natural setting will deprive the food of the same essence and life, Kazbek has recreated the atmosphere of a Georgian apartment with a traditional stove, reminiscent of long, lively family meals.
Starters range from 6-14 euros, mains 8-25 euros. Wine by the glass is from 7 euros, bottles from 44 euros.
Location: Ulitsa 1905 Goda, 2
A carnivore’s dream, Max’s Beef for Money is a pretty self explanatory name, and not for the faint hearted - glass cabinets of hanging meat greet you at the entrance and line the walls of the restaurant. Max’s approaches meat in a serious and appreciative way: meat is sourced from the restaurant’s own farm, the restaurant is named after its local butcher, Max, and all parts of the animal from head to tail are used. The menu is kept ascetically short, and steaks are sold in 3 kinds - prime, tenderloin, or alternative cuts - and served as simply as possible, in their own juice and seasoned with salt and pepper. More elaborate starters can be ordered, such as beef tartare with ginger, as well as alternative mains such as bone marrow with truffle or beef cheek with port salsa. The wine list was sourced by restaurant owner Vladimir Basov’s trips around the vineyards of Europe.
Steaks range from 13.5-74 euros, alternative mains from 8-24 euros. Wine starts from 7 euros for a glass, 41 euros for a bottle.
Location: Bolshoi Kozikhinsky, 4
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