Beirut Hall: Something Different
This Lebanese restaurant offers a wide variety of kebabs and other quick grilled Halal meat and vegetable dishes. We also had some nice lattes and rice pudding, all for a really good value. The atmosphere was casual and staff were friendly. If you're in the mood for something different than the usual casual meal in Lviv, give this place a try.
De Mandzaro: Stopped for a borsch
The place was quite cozy and with sufficient prices of local food, also pizzas, drinks, so I used it two times in my trip to Lviv.
First time I have tried a borsch and Ukrainian style ravioli with a pork meat. For second my visit I opted for a beef with vegetables and beer. For first and second time the price of food and drink was around the same - 25 -30 grivens. Actually it is really a good price, a bit cheaper as in my hometown.
Mlinets: First place to eat in Lviv
It was the first food place I used in Lviv and Ukraine. It was a small coffee for an early breakfast. I took a portion of pancakes with curd, also a cup of green tea. The place I have chosen was outside to do also some people watching.
Pancakes were nice, with a cup of green tea I paid around 21 grivens. Actually I paid with a credit card and it looked strange for them as terminal asked for pin code (I believe it is still old system and they just can pay through magnetic stripe, without pin code).
Kryivka: Tried "kulish" here
I got recommendation to visit "Kryivka" by hostel personnel. That is more, the place was just a few meters from my hostel. It was truly Ukrainian national food restaurant made as a revolutionary bunker. When you try to entrance it a soldier opens the door asking where are you from, also it is better to tell "Slava Ukraine" (glory to Ukraine) for him.
I opted for a kulish (such a porridge) and a beer. Food and atmosphere was nice, just prices here is a bit higher, it looks touristy. It cost me around 50 grivens.
Lviv Christmas Market: Try Ukrainian Street Food!!
If you are lucky enough to be in Lviv at Christmas time, you absolutely must try some of the Ukrainian food available from street vendors and booths at the Christmas market. Some of the most popular and delicious dishes are grilled kovbasa sausage, a mix of fried rice, vegetables and pork called plov, chicken shashlik with bread and spicy ketchup, pork hamburgers and pancakes stuffed with fruit, cheese or meat called deruny or blyntsy.
There is a special traditional Ukrainian Christmas grain pudding called kutia that's really delicious and can be found at the Christmas market. There are also lots of delectable sweets, candy, nuts and chocolate squares of all kinds, candied apples, and very rich and thick hot chocolate served in tiny cups. If you visit between January 7th to 9th you can sample the variety of fried doughnuts, or pampuh, filled with jam, poppyseed, chocolate, or covered in honey or sugar at the Pampuh Festival, where locals showcase their own recipes and participate in pampuh-making and eating contests.
To drink, you can sample the sweet honey-based liquor called med but we honestly found the sweetness a bit tough to stomach. There's coffee, tea and cider available everywhere, piping hot so you can warm up and stay out late into the night eating, drinking and celebrating!
Favorite Dish: Kutia, a traditional Ukrainian Christmas grain pudding is a must-try if you can find it. Kovbasa sausage and plov are also tasty favorites.
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Svit Kavy: The Perfect Cup of Coffee!
Of the many coffeehouses I visited in Lviv, Svit Kavy is my favorite. This coffeehouse is really a treat for coffee lovers like me because they have an extensive selection of gourmet and exotic coffee beans from around the world and their menu provides descriptions of the origin, strength and flavor of each variety of coffee they offer. The menu is available in English and the service is friendly. The atmosphere is very laid back and comfortable, authentic and simple with no gimmicks, just the perfect cup of coffee.
Favorite Dish: They have some really bold Sumatran blends that are strong and delicious. Svit Kavy brews the perfect cup of coffee!!!
Dynamo Blues: Restaurant Dynamo Blues
Restaurant Dynamo Blues for 10 years remains the best Steak House in Lviv. Tasty and unique atmosphere will make you fall in love in restaurant Dynamo Blues
Favorite Dish: Restaurant Dynamo Blues for 10 years remains the best Steak House in Lviv. Tasty and unique
Mons Pius: Meat and Beer, Promised and Delivered
Mons Pius is a steakhouse-slash-pub kind of place tucked in a corner by the Armenian Cathedral. The menu is very meat-heavy and it's really expensive for Lviv. The beer, which they brew on-site, is a highlight. The steak was really good and cooked well. I really liked the farmer's salad. The food was good; I would recommend this place if you are craving a steak and have hryvnia to spend.
Our server seemed to really dislike his job, or us, to a degree that was kind of amusing. When we walked in, he was all "I guess you can sit... follow me I suppose..." and it didn't really get better from there. He acted as though everything was a personal favor we were asking of him. Otherwise the atmosphere was comfortable and casual, if not a bit loud. There's an enormous TV showing replays of football matches and there were a few very large groups dining there which added to the fun, pub-like atmosphere.
Favorite Dish: The steak. It's what they promise and deliver. The salads are good.
Burgers Buffet: Maybe I didn't get it...
We arrived to Lviv pretty late in the evening and we didn't want to work very hard at finding something to eat, so we decided to try Burgers Buffet. The place was pretty consistently packed with young people at all hours, which has led me to conclude that people in Lviv like it, and I didn't really get what they were going for with their food.
I ordered a chicken burger which consisted of a few strips of chewy chicken in a bread pocket absolutely drenched in mayonnaise... like with pieces of cabbage and cheese and chicken all floating around. The amount of mayo and ketchup made the thing really messy and gross tasting. They also don't serve beef burgers. It left me wondering if the food was prepared carelessly that day or if this is a cultural hamburger variation that I'm just not used to...
Favorite Dish: Maybe next time I'll find something I can enjoy.
Strudel Haus: StruDELICIOUS!
Strudel Haus is, in my opinion, a necessary stop on any trip to Lviv. The strudel is very rich and delicious; they serve savory kinds like salmon, meat or spinach (my personal favorite), or sweet varieties like apple or walnut. The pancakes with strong feta and raisins are amazingly good. The soup seemed very popular- we didn't get any but everyone else in the place did. They have specialty teas in huge decanters for sharing. I also heard they have good breakfast. They have an English menu, the service was perfect and they were very patient with our language barrier.
The only thing standing between you and delicious strudel is the small number of tables; you might have to make an effort to eat here by staking the place out a bit, but it's worth it.
Favorite Dish: The spinach strudel was my favorite, but all the kinds we tried were very good. The pancakes with strong feta are a must-try if you like cheese.
Freska /Фреска: Coffee and Chocolate, the Perfect Combination
Freska was one of my favorite coffeehouses in Lviv, and believe me, there are a lot to choose from. They have an awesome selection of coffees, teas, snacks and very decadent chocolates that are made on-site. The espresso has a deep roasted and fresh flavor, and the flavorings like vanilla and caramel are very authentic tasting and not too syrupy.
The atmosphere is also a major plus. It's called "Freska" because of the lovely fresco painted on the ceiling. The menus have English translation and are attached inside of old Ukrainian books. The service was polite, fast, and patient with our language barrier. The tables are arranged on different levels and tucked into corners giving it a cozy and quiet feel. Being just a few steps from Ploshcha Rynok, you gotta stop in for some coffee and sweets to recharge while hitting the cobblestone and exploring the old town.
Favorite Dish: The espresso is great. The chocolate is really something special. Pick up some chocolates, try the chocolate croissant, the chocolate latte... you get the idea.
The International Varenyky Fund: Great Meal in Lviv
Varenyky is a quintessential Ukrainian dish of small dumplings with different kinds of fillings, such as potato, cottage cheese, bacon or berries. They can also be called pierogies in Ukrainian dialects although this usually refers to the Polish take on the dish.
International Varenyky Fund offers several different kinds of varenky, and all that we tried were excellent. They serve lots of other Ukrainian dishes and the apple pancake was delicious for dessert. They have an English menu and the service was very good and understanding of our language barrier. The food is also a great value which means you can really get your varenyky on and try lots of different kinds. The decor is interesting. Make sure you get a meal here while you're in Lviv.
Favorite Dish: Cherry varenyky. They have a great sweet-sour flavor. Despite the massive Ukrainian-Canadian presence in my family and my hometown, I had never tried this kind.
Cafe Mapa: Mmmmmm Coffee
Cafe Mapa is a pretty busy coffeehouse that also serves decent food. The atmosphere was really nice especially if you can grab a comfortable seat near the window to do some people watching. The place is decorated in maps and atlases and things like that. They have an English menu, but the Ukrainian menu has very clear pictures to explain. The service was also very good and patient with our language barrier.
The coffee and espresso are very good. The large is huge and a good value. The breakfast is a good deal and the fresh vegetables are worth mentioning.
Favorite Dish: Cafe Latte. Big, roasted flavor. Mmmmm!
Panska Charka: Order Carefully and Check your Bill!
We decided to visit this Ukrainian restaurant on a whim after the place we wanted to go was full. The food was quite good; I had peasant borscht and potato dumplings, and my husband had a steak and grilled vegetables.
Unfortunately when the bill came we were pretty shamelessly ripped off. The menu listed the steak at 54 hryvnias for 150 grams. On the bill, we were charged for 200 grams of steak at 128 hryvnias. I can read Cyrillic, and when I asked our server he wouldn't correct the bill, told me all steaks were automatically charged like that and it says so on the menu. It doesn't, and there was no way I was going to waste any real time and energy arguing with him, but please beware because who knows what you'll owe them when you leave. You could also likely avoid all this by ordering very carefully or speaking Ukrainian well, and we admittedly did not do either.
Favorite Dish: The peasant borscht was really good.
Kryyivka: The not so secret restaurant
Kryyivka is a "secret" themed restaurant located on Rynok Square in L'viv. The restaurant is themed as an old army bunker with old guns and war memorabilia dotted around. I decided to visit this restaurant after seeing so many good reviews on VT but found it very disappointing.
As you find the entrance door you must knock on the door where an "officer" will hold a gun at you and ask for the password. I said "Slava Ukrayina" which I believed to be the password but they wouldn't let me in and shut the door. I knocked again, said "Slava Ukrayina" again and he said that the password was "Heroyam Slava" I thought this is what they said in response to you so maybe they change the password between the two phrases. Anyway, We were allowed in but was not offered any special spy vodka and we were not allowed into the underground area.
The food was actually very nice but I was a little disappointed that we didn't get welcome that we had read about as we were all looking forward to visiting the restaurant before we arrived. The service from the waiters/ waitresses was great.
Favorite Dish: I had the boar sausage which was very nice.
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