Budai Gourmet Festival 2012 – Foodies Welcome to Budapest!

Now the Budai Gourmet Festival is coming at the beginning of June again to make all foodies, locals and foreigners happy in Budapest.

Budai Gourmet Festival Budapest

Budai Gourmet Festival Budapest

The even better news is that you can watch all the Euro 2012 games right at the festival venue on huge outdoor screens, plus enjoy the gourmet foods and drinks, probably the best bites and sips Hungary can offer. There will be lots of jazzy – folksy concerts too to make you really feel relaxed.
The venue is one of our favorites in Budapest: Millenaris Park, a contemporary cultural complex, almost at the foot of the Castle Hill (a 15 min walk down from the Buda Castle District).

Please enjoy! June 8 – 10, an amazingly good event to put down in your calendar for your Budapest trip.
Oh, and almost forgot, you can take a look at the detailed program of the 2012 Budapest Gourmet Festival here

Budapest Bib Gourmand Restaurant: Nancsi Neni Vendegloje

Although there is still no Michelin-star restaurant in Eastern-Europe, including Hungary, Budapest has a Bib Gourmand restaurant: Nancsi Neni Vendegloje (approx. the Inn of Aunt Nanchie). Needless to say, being the proud owner of the Bib Gourmand for more than five-six years, Nancsi Neni Vendegloje attracts a wide variety of local and foreign folks, couples, large groups or families. The restaurant is in the green area of Buda hills in Budapest, about 20-30 min. drive from Budapest city center. In fair weather, there is a huge open air area under century old oak and chestnut trees, and the restaurant pays special attention to families (diaper changer, climber, wooden train, etc.), guests with pets are very welcome, and bikers don’t need to worry about bike racks.

See the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Budapest Bib Gourmand Restaurant Nancsi Neni Vendegloje

Address: Ordogarok street (Ördögárok utca) 80., Budapest H-1028
Phone: 00-36-1-398-7127
Opening hours: 12 pm- 11 pm
Getting here:

  • by public transport: from Moszkva tér metro station (red line) it takes about 25-35 min. Take the streetcar/ tram number 56 (you can also take it from Hotel Gellert). Go to the terminal (approx. 20 min from Moszkva) then change to one of the following buses: bus number 57 or 63 or 157 and get off at the third stop called Széchenyi utca.
  • by car/ bike: go to Moszkva tér on the Buda side, and take Szilágyi Erzsébet fasor road. For about 15 min just go straight ahead following the road (in a few min the name of the road changes from Szilágyi to Huvosvolgy/ Hűvösvölgyi út). Check the streets on the left for Ordogarok utca/ Ördögárok utca. Turn left and look for number 80.

See the location of Nancsi Neni Restaurant on the Budapest Tourist Map: knife and fork map icon in the middle. Notice that the restaurant is quite close to the Children’s Railway and its Museum as well as the Bela Bartok Museum & Memorial House or the Chairlift in Budapest (Libego/ Libegő)


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Kisbuda Gyongye Restaurant (Kisbuda Gyöngye Étterem) in Budapest

Kisbuda Gyongye Restaurant (Kisbuda Gyöngye Étterem) in Budapest is loved by locals and not so easily found by foreigners, as it’s not in downtown Budapest, but about 30 min from the city center (district 5 and 6). So it makes Kisbuda Gyöngye a good place if you want to get away from the touristy places and find something authentically Hungarian and nice to eat. Mind you, it does not mean that the restaurant is considerably cheaper than its counterparts in the city center. The restaurant has been awarded various prizes in the past decade (including the Chaine des Rotisseurs in 2000), and it’s often visited by Hungarian and foreign celebs.

Kisbuda Gyongye Restaurant (Kisbuda Gyöngye Étterem) in Budapest

The interior design is like a well-off Budapest apartment from the turn of the century: antique chest of drawers, glass display cabinets, mirrors, chandeliers, Thonet chairs, lace cloths, etc.
Address: Kenyeres utca 34., 1034 Budapest, 3rd district (III. ker.)
Phone: 00-36-1-368-6402
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 12 pm – 12 am
Note: Kisbuda Gyongye translates into English as the Pearl of Little Buda (Óbuda, or old Buda in this context). Oftentimes piano music is played in the background.
Getting here: take bus number 60 at Batthyány tér metro station (red line) and get off at Podolin utca. Alternatively, take streetcar number 4 or 6 up to Margaret bridge stop on the Buda side, then change to streetcar number 17 and get off at Podolin utca.

See the location of Kisbuda Gyongye Restauranton the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Kisbuda Gyongye Restaurant is relatively close to the Roman amphitheater (Aquincum Museum), the Pálvölgyi Dripstone Cave and the spa luxury hotel, Ramada Plaza Budapest.


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Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Iguana Bar & Grill Restaurant in Budapest: Mexican Dishes

Iguana Bar & Grill Restaurant has been voted the best Mexican restaurant in Budapest for five consecutive years (and before you start getting suspicious: not only because competition is slacking in this area). Iguana Bar & Grill – La Cantina de Budapest opened in 1997 serving authentic Tex-Mex cooking (quesadillas, guacamole, burritos, fajitas, jalapeno, guadalajara soup, chorizo sausages, special kids menus, etc.) “Colorfully decorated and always buzzing with activity, you might have trouble finding a seat at this buzzing restaurant. This is a real hangout for Budapest expatriates, but also draws younger crowds and families. … You might also try the Iguana Beer, made especially for the restaurant by a small Csepel Island brewery.” (Frommer’s). Here’s a lively party shot from summer:

Iguana Bar and Grill Restaurant in Budapest Mexican Dishes in Hungary

Address: Zoltán utca 16., Budapest 5th district (V. ker.)
Phone: 00-36-1-331-4352
Opening hours: Sun – Thu 11:30 am – 12:30am, Fri-Sat 11:30 am – 1:30am
Getting here
:

  • metro (red line) Kossuth tér station,
  • tram/streetcar: number 2 or 2A
  • bus number 15

Note: Book a table in advance (try to get one upstairs on the balcony). The restaurant can comfortably seat large groups too (max. capacity 120 people, gallery 40). Regular popular events include: the anniversary party in Sept, or the Cinco de Mayo (usually May 5) Street Party

See the location of Iguana Bar & Grill Restaurant on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Iguana Bar & Grill Restaurant is very close to the Parliament, the Basilica and Roosevelt square with the Chain Bridge, plus there’s the Funicular Railway on the other side of the bridge (5-10 min walk).


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Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Ocean Bar and Grill Restaurant (Óceán Étterem) Budapest

Ocean Bar and Grill Restaurant (Óceán Étterem) is your sure bet if you want to eat high quality fresh seafood in Budapest. No wonder it easily wins the Best of Budapest award in Seafood categories in the past few years. Besides the seafood restaurant there’s also an Óceán Delicatessen store where you can buy your own fishes, prawns, scampis, mussels, lobsters – anything from black tiger to sea scallops no roe. Chef Giuseppe Monti and the management make seafood dining a mission in Hungary (offering recipes, nutrition advice, what have you).

Ocean Bar and Grill Restaurant (Óceán Étterem) Budapest
Address: Petőfi tér 3., 1052 Budapest
Phone: 00-36-1-266-1826
Opening hours: Mon – Sun 12 pm – 12 am (Óceán Delicatessen Tue-Sat 10.00am – 9.00pm. )
Getting here
:

  • metro (blue line) Ferenciek tere station,
  • tram/streetcar: number 2 or 2A
  • bus number 7 (green or red), or number 78

Note: Book a table in advance. Expect specialty prices. Attire: casual.

Ocean Bar and Grill Restaurant (Óceán Étterem) interior Budapest

See the location of Ocean Bar and Grill Restaurant on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Ocean Bar and Grill Restaurant is very close to the Elisabeth Bridge, Váci utca shopping street and the luxurious Hotel Marriott Budapest.


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Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Nightingale Restaurant Budapest (Fulemule Étterem)

Nightingale Restaurant Budapest (Fülemüle Étterem) serves Hungarian and Jewish dishes in downtown Budapest, a few steps from the old Jewish district. It’s a small cozy restaurant owned by András Singer, which also boasts the first Hungarian Civil Sholet Club in Hungary too. If you are specifically seeking Central European Jewish specialties based on grandma’s recipes, Fulemule Restaurant may be an ideal place for you. Anyway, sólet beans is cooked in the oven for 6 hours with chopped onions, herbs and spices, but the star dish is goose.

Nightingale restaurant Fulemule Etterem in Budapest Hungary

Address: Kőfaragó utca Budapest
Phone: 00-36-1-266-7947 or cell phone: 00-36-70-341-1035
Opening hours: Sun-Thu 12 pm – 10 pm, Fri – Sat 12 pm – 11 pm
Note: literature Nobel laureate (for the novel Fatelessness), Imre Kertész is a regular, according to Via Michelin.
Getting here:

  • metro (red line) Blaha Lujza tér or Astoria stations, then a few minute walk
  • trams/ streetcars: number 4 or 6
  • buses: number 7 (green or red), number 78

See the location of Nightingale Restaurant Budapest on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Nightingale Restaurant Budapest is very close to the old Jewish district and just a few steps from the Great Synagogue (Moorish-Byzantine neolog synagogue), as well as the beautiful Urania Film Theater (Uránia Mozi) or the opulent Cafe New York in New York Palace Boscolo Hotel.

If your are interested in further Jewish attractions and places of interest in Budapest, use the Jewish Budapest map.


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Il Terzo Cerchio: Divine Italian Restaurant in Budapest

The Italian Ristorante Il Terzo Cerchio in Budapest is a divine Italian Restaurant in two senses: one for its food, which is the most important, and the other for its name, which means ‘The Third Circle‘ referring to the 3rd circle of Hell in Dante’s Divine Comedy, where Cerberus guards the gluttons. So beware falling into the trap of gluttony here! :)

While the gluttons in Dante’s epic poem (or the thriller Seventh based on it) are forced to lie in slush made by freezing rain, black snow & hail, you will be treated heavenly in this fine Italian restaurant located in inner Budapest, in fact the old Jewish district.

Il Terzo Cerchio Italian Restaurant in Budapest Dohany utca

“Time goes by quickly in Terzo, because it’s ideally suited for large, loud groups and not intimate discussions. On a regular weekday evening the huge, almost hollow place fills up quickly with Italians and locals having a great time at large, sometimes 10-12 seater tables. There is a good buzz about the place that is kept up by the ever watchful eyes of the Italian owners – always there to greet guests, help out where possible and just to be there at all times. Pizza is one of the best Budapest has to offer with a definite smoky taste due to the wood-fired brick oven it is made in.” (Steel on Food Police culinary blog)

The design is like a cobblestoned street under the ground, simple wooden tables and chairs, bare brick walls, and large gatherings make it a lively place.

Address: Dohány utca 40, 1072 Budapest
Phone: 00-36-1-354-0788
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 12pm – 23:30
Getting here:

  • metro (red line) Astoria station
  • trams/ streetcars: 47 or 49
  • buses: number 7 (green not red), or 78

See the location of Il Terzo Cerchio Restaurant on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Il Terzo Cerchio Restaurant is very close to the old Jewish district and just a few steps from the Great Synagogue (Moorish-Byzantine neolog synagogue), as well as the beautiful Urania Film Theater (Uránia Mozi) or the opulent Cafe New York in New York Palace Boscolo Hotel.


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Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Ristorante Krizia: Italian restaurant in Budapest

Ristorante Krizia Italian restaurant in Budapest headed by the owner-chef Graziano Cattaneo serves genuine Italian cuisine in a rustic-elegant family atmosphere. Italian and Hungarian wines by the glass and by the bottle alike. As Jacqueline Friedrich in New York Times remarks: “a popular seven-year-old Italian restaurant with excellent homemade pasta.” (back in 2004). “Our main courses of spinach and ricotta ravioli, home made cannelloni and risotto of langoustines were all a cut above the norm. Finishing off with equally impressive caramelized fruit pancakes and a chocolate torte, we’re happy to be among the critics who rave about this place. Recommended!” (Talking Cities UK). Krizia Restaurant is also amongst the top 33 restaurants on Chew.hu list (a leading culinary Hungarian blog).

Ristorante Krizia Italian Restaurant in Budapest close to Oktogon

Address: Mozsár utca 12., 1066 Budapest
Phone: 00-36-1-331-8711
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 12-15 and 18:30-24:00 (closed on Sundays)
Note: Sundays: closed.
Getting here:

  • underground (yellow metro line), Opera station
  • trams/ streetcars: number 4 or 6

See the location of Krizia Restaurant on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Ristorante Krizia is very close to the Opera House as well as the Operetta Theater, and the House of Terror museum on Andrassy út.


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Photo from Chew.hu

Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Trattoria Toscana: Italian Restaurant by the Danube bank in Budapest

Trattoria Toscana Budapest is an Italian Restaurant by the Danube bank in Budapest, with a lovely terrace overlooking the white sleek Elisabeth Bridge or the 19th century Liberty Bridge. Trattoria Toscana boasts a very welcoming interior: warm colors, rustic walls, good pastas, pizzas, salads, desserts, and always full in the evenings. Fodor’s travel guide writes: “this popular trattoria feels pretty authentic … The extensive menu boasts some of the best fish in town, including several sea bass options. The little understood mozzarella ventigli pasta with San Marzano tomatoes and fresh oregano (homemade cheese-filled ravioli with garlicky tomatoes and lots of oregano) is a dish to die for.” Pizzas from 1700 HUF, beers from 800 HUF, occasional celeb view for free.
Trattoria Toscana Budapest Hungary Italian upscale restaurant

Address: Belgrád rakpart 13. Budapest V. kerület (5th district)
Phone: 00-36-1-327-0045 or 00-36-1-327-0046
Opening hours: Mon-Sun 12 pm – 12 am
Note: make an early reservation to get a table
Getting here:

  • tram/ streetcar: number 2 or 2A
  • metro (blue line) stations: Ferenciek tere OR Kálvin tér – equally 5-minute from either
  • bus: number 15

See the location of Trattoria Toscana on the Budapest Tourist Map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest or click on the View Larger Map blue link under the map). Notice that Trattoria Toscana is very close to the Central Market Hall and Váci utca shopping street.


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Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Restaurant Csalogany 26 in Budapest: the Locals-Love-It Place

Csalogany 26 Restaurant (Csalogány 26 Étterem) is one of those really few excellent restaurants in Budapest, the news and legends of which have been going around in gossip, word of mouth, emails, forums, gourmet reviews (!), etc. No, not the interior design, not even the waiters’ style – the food quality & selection and the very affordable prices, so the place. It’s worth checking if you are on the Buda side of Budapest. New York Times: “low-key trattoria with a high-tech twist … blends Hungarian and Continental cuisines … the wine list has excellent Hungarian varietals, including a kadarka.” So yes, it’s ‘the locals love it’ plus ‘the locals fear that prices may surge up’ restaurant type. Extreme bargain for excellence. The name is Csalogány 26, say: cha-lo-gagne hoo-son-hot.

Csalogany 26 Restaurant in Budapest Hungary
Address: Csalogány utca 26, Budapest 1015
Phone: 00-36-1-201-7892
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 12:00-23:00 Sat 18:00-23:00 (Sundays: closed)
Getting here: metro (red line), station: Batthyány tér, bus: 86 (Batthyány tér stop), tram/ streetcar: 19 (Batthyány tér stop)
Note: The name says the address. Live kitchen means that there’s a TV connected from the kitchen to the dining room showing the preparation of meals. Closed on Sundays.

See the location of Restaurant Csalogany 26 on the Budapest Tourist map (check the knife and fork map icon in the middle, and click on the icons to learn more about the neighboring places of interest):


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Read more about the Best Restaurants in Budapest.

Budapest Chairlift: Libego on Janoshegy

The Chairlift in Budapest is on János hill (Jánoshegy) in a beautiful green part of the hilly Buda side of Budapest. Although the Chair Lift is run by the Budapest Public Transportation company, Budapest travel passes and tourist cards known as Budapest cards, do not include a free ride on the Chairlift.

Budapest Chairlift

Budapest Chairlift

Opening hours: weekends and fair weather 10 am – 4pm
Prices: 500 HUF for adults, 200 HUF for kids, 400 HUF for students and retired people. Return tickets are double.
Address: Zugligeti út 97, Budapest
Phone: 00-36-1-394-37-64
Note: Groups need to book in advance.

The location of the Chairlift is indicated in the middle with a blue (sorry) ‘helicopter’ icon on the Budapest Tourist Map, you can see the Children’s Railway (Gyermekvasut), the Lookout Tower and the Langos vendor close by. All highly recommended for a relaxed family-friendly or inspirational romantic program.


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Here’s a nice video on the Chairlift on Janos Hill (the second major part of the video is about the neighboring lookout tower, Erzsebet kilato from 1910). Watch out for the retro panpipe music characterizing the 1980s: