Russian

Location: 

Vogue Cafe
ул. Кузнецкий Мост, 7/9
Moscow
Russia

Vogue Café is one of the trendiest places in Moscow. It is situated in one of the best locations, next to expensive hotels, bars, restaurants, Bolshoi theatre, opposite Moscow’s prestigious department store Tsum and a short walk from the Kremlin. It is owned by Arkady Novikov in his never expanding restaurant empire, and to open the Vogue Café, he teamed up with Vogue publisher Conde Nast and in July 2003 the Vogue Café opened. The place is super trendy, they describe this as “understated Euro-chic” and when you walk in there is a casual bar where people can go in the evening or during the day, and where they have an amazingly tempting selection of cakes, all of us that went there for lunch were amazed at the sight of this, in hindsight I should have taken a picture of these cakes, so if you fancy some French looking cakes, macaroons or anything sweet, do head here.

Maija rated: 

4.00

Location: 

Strana Katoroy Net
2 Okhotny Ryad
Moscow
Russia

Strana Katorioy Net literally means “a country that does not exist” and it is one of the restaurants owned by restauranteur Arkady Novikov, who owns many restaurants in Moscow (and now also in London). The restaurant is located on one side of hotel Moscow that will soon become Four Seasons hotel, in the centre of Moscow, and next to the Red Square, the Bolshoi Theatre and the State Duma 

 

Maija rated: 

3.00

Location: 

Mari Vanna
116 Knightsbridge, SW1X 7PJ
London
United Kingdom

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Mari Vanna is a Russian restaurant in Knightsbridge, in front of the new Bulgari hotel and next to 1 Hyde Park, strategically placed, as this is an area beloved by the Russian community. Mari Vanna also has branches in New York, St Petersburg and Moscow. If you are Russian (or Russian speaking like myself) you will most likely really like this place, because it sort of reminds you of home, and most people that go there are Russian speakers or foreigners brought there by Russian speakers.  You enter and the waitresses dressed in flowery aprons speak to you in Russian (all the waiters are Russian or Russian speaking, our waitress when we went there was Latvian), and it just feels quite surreal to be surrounded by this Russian atmosphere as soon as you walk in.

Maija rated: 

3.50

Location: 

Varvary
Strastnoy Blvd, д. 8А, 107031
Moscow
Russia

I am very very annoyed with this restaurant. I went there hoping I will eat at the famous Russian chef Anatoly Komm’s famous Varvary restaurant but the waiter gave me the menu of Varvary Brasserie which serves every day European and Russian food and did not even give me the menu of Anatoly Komm’s famous molecular cuisine dishes. Which leaves me in a silly position, as I have been to the premises of Varvary, experienced the atmosphere and the service and also the food, but just not the food I was expecting to have, which means I will probably have to go back to try the molecular cuisine dishes, about which I am actually extremely annoyed, as I did not really like Varvary at all.  

 

Maija rated: 

1.50

Location: 

The Delaunay
55 Aldwych WC2B 4BB
London
United Kingdom

I had been to The Delaunay in January last year when it first opened and absolutely loved it, and now I came for the second time for brunch. The Delaunay is a sister restaurant of the Wolseley, and calls itself a “Grand European Café, Restaurant” so it has that amazing aura when you enter the restaurant, with high ceilings, beautiful slightly old feel furniture, very nicely dressed staff. They also have super cool heavy silver cutlery, the nice champagne glasses from the 1950s and old clock so it feels like you could be in Vienna in the middle of the last century. The Delaunay is located on the Strand and serves Austrian/ Eastern European food and last time I came here last January I had borsch (traditional beetroot soup from Russia/ Eastern Europe) which I liked and remember being vegetarian (usually it has meat in it) as well as Chicken Kiev, and I had a great meal.

Maija rated: 

3.50

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Location: 

Cafe Pushkin
Tverskoy Boulevard, 26а 125009
Moscow
Russia

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The story of why and how the restaurant Café Pushkin (or just Pushkin for the locals) came about is so interesting, it could have been the beginning of one of Pushkin’s stories as well (hopefully I don’t need to explain who Pushkin is in detail, but if for some strange reason you don’t know he was one of the best writers in Russia in the 19th century). Apparently 40 years ago Gilbert Becaud, a Frenchman, gave performances in Moscow and he wrote a song “Natalie” in which he said “We are walking around Moscow, visiting the Red Square and you are saying learned words about Lenin, the revolution, but I am thinking: “I wish we sat in the “Café Pushkin”, we would be drinking hot chocolate and talking of other things… ”.The song apparently became popular in France, and Frenchmen came to Moscow and searched for “Café Pushkin” and failed to find it because it did not exist.

Maija rated: 

4.50

Location: 

The Conservatory Lounge & Bar
Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow Neglinnaya St, 4, 109012
Moscow
Russia

I have stayed in the Hyatt hotel in Moscow many times now, and it is a very central hotel, located right next to the red square and is one of the main hotels for business people to stay at. Hyatt also has a bar on the 10th floor of the hotel called The Conservatory Lounge & Bar where on one occasion I went to get food with my friend J as I was too lazy to go anywhere else and it does offer a somewhat nice view of Moscow (it is not high enough to offer a great view).

Maija rated: 

1.50

Location: 

SamarQand
18 Thayer Street, UK W1U
London
United Kingdom

Samarqand restaurant is named after the second largest city in Uzbekistan and serves Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan food as well as food influenced from the neighbouring countries Russia, China and Mongolia and is located on the trendy Marylebone High Street. Mainly Russian speaking people go there (and mainly people in their early 20s that also enjoying drinking some vodka before going out after dinner) and I have seen very few foreigners the few times I have been there. The place also has some private rooms each equipped with flat screen TVs and DVD players, Karaoke machines and games consoles, as well as an inbuilt sound systems, things to make your party better in case you want to stay here. 

 

Maija rated: 

3.00

Location: 

Baku
165 Sloane Street SW1X 9QB
London
United Kingdom

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This is a new Azerbaijani restaurant on Sloane Street, and the coolest thing about this place is that when you order they give you an Ipad instead of a traditional menu, where you can see all the dishes you can chose from including their pictures, which is an amazing idea, as I felt like I ordered the best meal out of all the options (I am sure we all have felt at some point that we have ordered something in a restaurant and it turned out to be something differrent, so this visual help is great in my view). The whole place is very posh, a bit like Sketch, with huge white posh chairs, very big white room so the actual ambience reminds you very little of Azerbaijan. Food is nice, but it does lack Azerbaijani flavours in my view, and is really catered for an audience that just wants posh food in a posh environment without the true local vibe.

Maija rated: 

2.00

Location: 

Baltic
74 Blackfriars Road SE1 8AH
London
United Kingdom

I remember going to Baltic restaurant a few years ago thinking they were going to be serving Baltic (as in Latvian, Estonian and Lithuanian) food, but the name is slightly misleading as they seem to serve mainly Polish food with a slight hint of Scandinavian food, and also some Russian dishes (the link here seems to be countries around the Baltic sea apart from the Baltic states). The best thing about this place is the amazingly huge vodka selection especially from Poland, here you can get all brands and all flavour vodkas (I had a delicious strawberry vodka shot).

Maija rated: 

3.00

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