I discovered the O!Shipka restaurant thanks to Kristian, a friend I met via CouchSurfing. He took me there to show me a typical Bulgarian restaurant and let me taste some traditional food.
I liked it so much that I went back there at least one more time, with a colleague (who was a narrow-minded Italian, so he didn't appreciate anything).
The downside of this place is that the non-smoking area is upstairs, so you have to cross the smoking area to reach it. Non-smokers don't enjoy many rights in Bulgaria, or at least they didn't in autumn 2010.
Favorite Dish: The first time, I had the salad you see in the photo (potatoes, cheeses, eggs, sour creme) and liked it. Kristian let me taste the ayryan, i.e. a drink made with water, yoghurt and salt (see my Local custom tip for more info). At first, it had a weird taste, but I eventually liked it and later, I got used to buy it at the supermarket.
This place is just special.
I know there are around 6 O!Shipka's in Sofia, but the one on Shipka Street itself is surely the coolest place in Sofia.
O!Shipka is housed in a beautiful building which is accessed from the site via a velvet curtain - inside there are friendly staff, a great menu, and just a great vibe.
For a few levs more, go down to the club where there are DJ's, Bands etc.
Favorite Dish: Tsarigradski Style Meatballs
There are three restaurants named O!Shipka in Sofia. But at most I like this on Boudapest Str.
Favorite Dish: I like "Vegetarian Sache" because it's fresh and cool. And cheap. But you have to be at least three if you want to eat it all.
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