Cafes/Bars/Pubs, Moscow

3.5 out of 5 stars 43 Reviews

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  • Cafes/Bars/Pubs
    by Muscovite
  • VT meeting June 03, 2014
    VT meeting June 03, 2014
    by Muscovite
  • Starbucks at Frunzenskaya Youth Palace
    Starbucks at Frunzenskaya Youth Palace
    by Muscovite
  • johngayton's Profile Photo

    Shokoladnitsa: A Bit Girlie But I Wasn't Complaining ;-)

    by johngayton Written Nov 25, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Shokoladnitsa (La Belle Chocolatiere) these days is a large, and very successful Russian chain of cafes with branches all over the country, including dozens in Moscow. It was here that we had a very pleasant VT mini-meet in June 2014, at the branch on Zubovsky Blvd, over the bridge from Gorky Park.

    As cafes go this was OK. The main room was bright, modernly-furnished and spotlessly clean. The menu is suitably cosmopolitan with a range of coffees and other beverages, snacky stuff and gooey cakes. Service seemed a bit off-hand but the place was very busy and it did take a while for our little group to assemble - so maybe the staff can be forgiven for taking their time to finally come and get our order.

    The company, though, were a delight - it's not often I get such a bevy of beauties all to myself. And the best bit was that my beer was the cheapest thing on the menu - HA!

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    • Women's Travel

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    Chelsea Gastropub: Fish and Chips!

    by johngayton Written Nov 15, 2014

    The Chelsea "Gastropub" sets itself out as an English boozer, complete with a proper bar serving imported English beers and rather incongruously a plush dining room with leather chairs, chandelier-style uplights, framed photos of Margaret Thatcher and Queen Elizabeth II and big-screen televisions.

    Sadly it just doesn't work.

    This is a place that should have employed me as a consultant. They have obviously spent a lot of money on it but the result is a bit of nothing. The dining room has the potential to mimic a smart London private club and by keeping the televisions to the bar area that too would work as a stand-alone upmarket pub.

    The extensive menu actually reads very well - a sort of eclectic Moscow meets London mish-mash. In the Russian style it is divided into sections - soups, salads, snacks, grills, burgers, specialities... Although not cheap it's not over-priced by Moscow standards.

    Service, I thought was a little formal, certainly too formal for a pub, but swift and efficient. On a Monday (I think it was) night the place was almost deserted and so lacking in atmosphere. Extrapolating mentally I can imagine that the target clientele would be the local yuppies, which doesn't enthuse me at all and so I'm kinda grateful I caught it on a quiet night.

    Favorite Dish: I was tempted by the burgers section but just out of badness opted for the "Fish and Chips". Well, this amused me. Maybe the chef has a sense of humour too and purposefully interpreted the idea of "Fish 'n Chips" to present it as it comes...or maybe not.

    The fish is Dorado - Swordfish or Mahi-Mahi as it's also known. This came perfectly cooked in a light crispy batter - nothing wrong there. The "Chips" though were what the Americans call "Chips", what we Brits call "Crisps".

    It was perfectly edible though, not hugely expensive, and the amusement value made up for the inauthenticity.

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    Russian chains: Coffee-house: 'Coffee-house'

    by Muscovite Updated Aug 7, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    "Coffee-house’ here is a proper name, so you won’t have any difficulty finding it – there’s no Russian translation, a coffee-house is always a coffee-house :)

    I had a very good chance to explore nearby eateries when our office canteen was temporarily closed.
    ‘Coffee-house’ has numerous location around Moscow – and indeed around the country, it’s one of the biggest Russian café chains. I went to the one at Ostozhenka. That probably was not very wise, as the street’s second name is the ‘Moscow Golden mile’ – nouveau riches had moved in, ruining the lovely old Moscow neighbourhood.

    Anyway, Coffee-house proved to be true to its name – the coffee was good, everything else bearable with no better immediate alternative.
    I was particularly baffled by their borsch – who on earth cuts cabbage for the soup into long threads, as if it were some Korean marinated carrots?

    The service – yes, they have service, too. You sit at the table and order food from the menu, then it is brought to you by the waitress. Not that the personnel is rude, in fact, the other way round, they are rather timid, look like they are afraid to be kicked out any time and sent back to their Central Asian deserts. Quite depressing for someone who still believes in solidarity of working people.

    The prices looked average, like everything else – not much character about the place.
    Their site doesn’t seem to have an English translation, I print-screened some of the menu, see the images below.
    Open 24 hours
    Free Wi-Fi

    P.S.
    Smokers, rejoice – they sell cigarettes!
    P.P.S.
    Just heard over the radio - 'Shokoladnitsa' has bought up 'Coffee-House'

    Favorite Dish: Coffee

    Margarita 335 rbl Croissant 95 rbl Capuccino 220 rbl Cheesecake 270 rbl
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    Russian chains: Shokoladnitsa (La Belle Chocolatière)

    by Muscovite Updated Jun 4, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    La Chocolatière is the only cafe chain in Moscow surviving from Soviet times. There was in fact no food chains at that time, and they are a mixed blessing now, too.

    There were just two Shokoladnitsas – one on Bolshaya Dmitrovka, called Pushkinskaya street at that time, the other on Yakimanka, which somehow managed to keep the name through all regimes. Both had a copy of Liotard’s La Belle Chocolatière hanging on the wall.
    The specialty of the house was the dessert of two rolled pankakes with chocolate sauce. Russians are known for their sweet tooth, and the cafes thrived. There were always long ques, especially at lunch time. Along with pancakes they served ‘normal food’ – soups, and I remember sausages with green peas, rather plain food, to be honest.

    Today’s Shokoladnitsa is nothing special, just another cafe chain. I must give them credit, though, they have expanded dramatically in recent years. There is even a Shokoladnitsa in the building that used to be home to a major publishing house and a no less prominent bookstore selling books in foreign languages. Indeed, with growing purchase power who needs literature?

    I went there after my disappointment with Coffee-house. This was not much better – the same impersonal service, the same tasteless food. The mushrooms’ creme-soup - they call it 'legendary' on their site - was obviously made with Knorr or Maggi powder, the pancakes came cold – did they think I was asking for ice-cream ?

    P.S.
    There is one good thing about all these places – they are equipped with very decent toilets, and unlike McDonald’s, they are not crowded – good to know for a busy tourist. And you don’t have to order anything, the personnel could not care less.

    P.P.S.
    With the VT members around and just the green tea to order the old 'Shoco' looked much more inviting.

    Credit cards accepted

    Favorite Dish: Used to be pancakes - 20 years ago

    La Belle Chocolati��re, Jean-��tienne Liotard, 1744 VT meeting June 03, 2014
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    International chains: Starbucks

    by Muscovite Updated Apr 18, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    You Western folks make consider your takeaway hot drinks a bare necessity, but for us ordinary Muscovites a 5 euro coffee looks somewhat extravagant.
    I guess I was on a visit to a doctor – there is an out-patient clinic around the corner in the same ‘Youth Place’ building – and he did leave my head unattended, this idea of visiting this fancy place would never have got into it otherwise.

    True, if you have a tablet and a few spare hours, Starbucks with its cozy sofas is your place – the nearby McDonald’s and Moo-Moo are crowded at lunch-time. Just keep in mind, you’ve got to have the buck of star!
    I took hot chocolate – that was really big and nourishing, I must admit, almost too much, you will have to skip lunch, and dinner, too. I did not know that and made it company with a raspberry cheesecake which tasted as if it was made in the home town Seattle, frozen and sent to this Moscow café by snail mail. The price suggested DHL, though.
    That was some time ago, and I do not really remember the exact prices. The official Starbucks site is not of much help; it’s their policy to change the prices daily, they say! Great idea, I must remember it to cite to my clients if I ever become an entrepreneur.

    P.S.
    Visiting doctors is good for VT. I was there again – coffee is still about $ 7, depending on size and type, the same price for cheesecakes. What beats me completely is their raisin bun for $ 3, if not more – for God’s sake, you can buy one in Nice for $ 1, and that’s not the cheapest place in the world.

    P.P.S.
    Got an errand from someone who is planning a VT meeting in Moscow and checked again:
    Cappuccino – 210 to 240 roubles, carrot cake – 210 roubles; altogether even with the inflated rouble about $12. Who can afford going there daily I have no idea.

    Starbucks at Frunzenskaya Youth Palace
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    Russian chains: Coffeemania

    by Muscovite Updated Apr 18, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is the most posh place I visited while our office canteen was closed.
    Not that it is really posh, it is just that for real Muscovites any cafe is posh - we do not have a habit of eating out.
    For that reason I could only afford a breakfast there – an omelette and coffee.
    The plate looked very attractive, both the earthenware and the food on it. So did the waiter, a happy-go-lucky youngster, probably a student. But the prices, on the contrary, were no fun - $ 9 for 2 eggs, fancy-fried as they were, $ 13 for cappuccino… Well, this coffee is not my cup of tea!
    P.S.
    Good for you, folks – this chain has an English-language site with very sensible navigation.

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  • kris-t's Profile Photo

    Local & Japanese: Cafe 5150

    by kris-t Updated Dec 5, 2013

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Now replaced with a fancy "I like bar" restaurant....

    Meal was unexpectedly good, stuff very frendly.
    Price is very reasonable.

    Also you can have a pape (from $21)

    Wi Fi - free

    Favorite Dish: Recomended!

    Cezar salad Beef with mashrooms
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    • Family Travel
    • Work Abroad

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  • The Golden vobla: Beer & Fish

    by ZalinaMoscow Written Aug 6, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Formally a pub, provides all dishes accompanying pint of beer, especially fish. Vobla is dried salted species of fish, perhaps the most popular beer snack. Howewer I eat it with orange juice.
    Dim light, basement stationing, hostess, enough spare seats.

    I don't drink beer so ordered trout and Cola. Service was fast and precise. My friends and I enjoyed celebration of finishing their 4th year. Most impressive of our order was emerald beer.

    You can check dishes' variety, prices, adresses (3 other places, Pokrovka also) on their website. Use Google Chrome service for english translation.

    Favorite Dish: Trout on coals, hot and spicy. 13$ nowadays.

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  • Stariki bar: A nice place to go

    by bastiki Written Apr 24, 2012

    Stariki bar was opened in the spring of 2011 in an ancient Moscow building in Bolshaya Lubyanka street. In the XIX century there was a Tryndiny’s trading firm, famous all round Russia. In the 1904 it was organized a public astronomic observatory on the roof of the building. Under the observatory there was a lecture room, reading room with the latest novelties in the field of astronomical sciences and museum that kept, for example, early types of telephones and the first phonographs.
    June 20, 1924 at the observatory took place the first meeting of the first in the world Society for Studies of Interplanetary Travel, the member of which was Friedrich Zander, who was working out a jet engine, and Konstantin Tsiolkovsky who was an honorary member.
    Today, sitting here in a comfortable sofa with your eyes closed, you can imagine for a minute sounds of Preobrazhensky march and hear toasts to the health of the Emperor and a prosperity of Tryndiny’s industrial firm. Then you can return to a modern, two-level place to have a coffee break or an appetizing supper, to play bridge, drink a cocktail at the bar o listen to the live club jazz. And all this take place at 13, Bolshaya Lubyanka street, where today is situated the Bar Stariki.
    You can also find here costume party and jazz evenings as well as concerts of foreign artists that were popular in the ’90 and ’00.
    Stariki bar is a unique for its great games collection, that includes both simple games like Scrubble and Mafia and more complicated ones like Go and Genium no Limit (from Maxim Patashev).
    Since October 2011 lessons of open kitchen Meet&Greet take place in the bar several times a week and every Sunday is opened a Kids studio.
    And the most important thing is that Stariki bar – it’s really tasty! You can hold business talks here and close a deal of the century during business-lunch, or organize a family celebration. For such cases there are private rooms in the bar – a big room for 40 persons and a small one for 8 persons.
    The chief cook Anton Bannikov surprises every month with special offers– from Thai dishes to lenten menu. Inventive cuisine, in a so called “new cuisine” style, can leave in the dust most of moscow restaurants. There are really fair portions and farm products. In the evenings it’s nice to seat at the bar tasting something new from the dainty cocktail list.

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    Cafe Vienna: Domodedovo Airport Eating

    by gordonilla Written Oct 1, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The «Vienna cafe» is to be found at Domodedovo Airport’s International departure lounge in what they call a "clean zone" (neutral territory) after passport control.

    After passport control go towards boarding gates 16-22 and then up the escalator to the 2nd floor.

    They operate a 24 hour service.

    The menu was quite interesting and service very good - however they seem to be doing some maintenance work, and some of the fixed seating is being repaired.

    Young staff, quite a lot of energy.

    Favorite Dish: I enjoyed the vegetable bouquet and European Sausages!

    Signage Counter View a side view

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    Nooning Bar & Restaurant: Just don't miss

    by polly9p Updated Aug 7, 2010

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    All we know, who comes to Moscow, that there are plenty of luxury places with good music and, sometimes, even good food. But for me there's one thing - atmosphere!

    I'm in love with New York and in Nooning i felt, like i'm home again.

    This loft style place is so lively and hip and I got why, when it discovered, that it was made by a london team, and now this fun and creative guys are my friends!

    Menu, cocktails, music - perfect!

    So if you come to visit Moscow this place is definetly - NEED TO GO!

    Favorite Dish: Maracuja mousse with mango and coconut!!!

    why it's good??? just come and try!

    Nooning Nooning Nooning
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    Starbucks: American coffee in Moscow!

    by Mantus Updated Apr 29, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I know it's foolish to go all the way to Russia (from the USA) and want to have something I can get anytime back home, but after weeks of traveling, sometimes it's nice to see a familiar place.

    The coffee here tastes the same as any Starbucks back home.

    Favorite Dish: Caramel Macchiato

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  • Bilingua: Fun not fussy

    by yankindubai Written Dec 27, 2007

    Rambling layout with balconies, beer and a dance floor with a stage. It's not cheap but it's not expensive. The service is typical Moscow: no smile no follow up.

    But the locals are not stuffy.

    Favorite Dish: The duck was good. The quesadilla was bland as was the salsa that went with it.

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    Ryumochnaya: Cheap and Hassle Free in the madness of Moscow

    by philmc1979 Written Feb 8, 2007

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    If you've spent any time in Moscow you'll probably have noticed that a) everything is very expensive and b) getting even the most minor thing done can be a chore.

    This cosy little bar/restaurant is a welcome break from all that.

    About 5 minutes walk from Red Square and Tverskaya, you'd hardly notice this place unless one of the funny amateur portraits outside catches your eye. Inside, it's pretty unassuming. Just find yourself a table, order some of the simple but delicious bar snacks (pork, chicken, salmon, buckwheat, freshly baked russian bread, pickled cabbage), get a cheap beer and you could spend all night in this lovely little place.

    Boho types and students chat with each other over drinks, the bar staff are friendly and speak just enough English to get you by. This place is also a welcome break from bad Russian fashions, burgundy-dyed hair and billionaire extravagance.

    Related to:
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    European Cuisine: Lane of cafes and restaurants near Kremlin

    by Polina_12 Updated Dec 1, 2006

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    Kamergersky Lane - it's a really nice european styled lane only 10 min by walk from Kremlin, between Tverskaya st. and Bolshaja Dmitrovka st. This lane is only around 200 meters long but have plenty of bars, cafes and restaurants for any taste and budget:

    Snackbar "5 zvezd" - sandwiches, salads, soups, desserts, beverages, sushi (by the way their sushi are really very tasty!!!), small prices
    Snackbar "Prime time" - all the same but not so tasty IMHO
    Coffee house "Zen coffee" - i like their pancakes much))).
    Coffee house "vatrushka" - i don't like it all: place has no concept, pink walls and plastic chairs, completely empty huge windows, all the desserts are like made from rubber
    "Posh" cafe - name says for itself
    Self service restaurant "Seno" - russian cuisine, very cheap
    Italian restaurant "Gusto" - nice cozy place, reasonable prices
    Italian cafe "Pinnocio"
    French cafe "Cafe Des Artistes" - expensive, tasty, cozy
    Cafe-pizzeria "Academia" - ordinary food, normal prices
    Restaurant "Cebab city" - normal prices, arabian + japanese cuisine (japanese is really good, arabian one i didn't try)

    Related to:
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    • Budget Travel

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