LVIV, Ukraine - It is a small cafe in Lviv that became its own Crimea, minus the sea and swimsuits.
This place has a pretty exterior and a convenient location - next to the exit from Ploshcha Lva Tolstoho metro station, ensuring that Samoe Dobre Cafe (The Kindest Café) won’t be left unnoticed.
We hoped that Kyiv’s Zheltok cafe, styled as an American diner, would offer a classical delicious treat. And it almost does. On the menu one can find a bunch of burgers for every taste and budget, including beef BBQ burger (Hr 55), melting mozzarella steak burger (Hr 65) or chicken burger (Hr 60). We went for a classic beef burger. The visitor can also ask for a different bun for a burger - Zheltok offers rye or wheat buns with sesame.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has made a lot of enemies among Ukrainians since his dodgy invasion of Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula in March. Now, people of Ukraine can have their vengeance on the Russian president, and do so in the most wicked ways – bite off his head, for instance.
The best place for late night talks with a glass of good wine is the kitchen. And Kyiv’s new Kitchen gastro-café claims to be even better for such a purpose. Located in downtown Kyiv on Saksahanskoho Street, the restaurant catches the eye with a number of bright paintings on the walls and small plants in green pots on each of its wooden tables.
“Have you been to the Milk Bar?” was a question somebody asked me every other week since early March. By the time I finally decided to try out this new venue, it seemed that everybody I know either had been there or tried to get in, but found the place overcrowded.
Ukrainians usually celebrate Easter with their families. Most people attend an Easter service, followed by a meal and long conversations with family. For those who are bored with the traditional holiday fare, restaurants and museums outside of Kyiv offer interesting open air Easter celebrations.
In Mood is where the Middle East and West merge. Opened just two months ago, the eatery’s interior is up to the conception – there is a weird combination of oriental and occidental decorative elements. Plenty of candles, dark purple velvet sofas and small embroidered satin pillows evokes an Asian fairytale that doesn’t blend with the soft-rock radio music playing, or the piano standing in the corner and the hanging chandeliers.
Kyivans seem to have plenty of opportunities to get loose with all the best night clubs at their feet. But the truth is many clubgoers are tired of all the fancy noisy parties. On a recent Saturday night this month, I was one of them. Therefore, after several oscillations, I chose a great place called Art Club 44, one of the oldest venues in town. The name of the club refers to its location in a courtyard on 44 Khreshchatyk Street.
There are places in Kyiv that seem almost legendary. They are dirty, dingy, old and terrible – but are still going strong and are loved by their patrons. They pack in crowds on regular work days, and evoke the same emotions as the old teddy bear from one’s childhood – tattered, ripped, but too precious to bin. The Kyiv Post revisits some of these timeless venues.
Autumn’s scariest and possibly most fun day is just around the corner.
Kyiv, which has happily adopted Halloween, offers plenty of locations and parties to choose from for celebration on Oct. 31. In fact, parties start from Oct. 26 and just keep going through the holiday.
The Kyiv Post asked four Kyivans who are hardcore club-goers to share their impressions from the city nightlife and tips on what to expect from specific clubs. For the addresses of the clubs mentioned see page 13.
Editor’s Note: The Kyiv Post is partnering with ImpactMedia, an international economics journalism program sponsored by the Foundation for Effective Governance in Kyiv, to bring readers four special stories in today’s edition. This is one of them. The other three start on the front page.
Hanging out with a friend on a Sunday night, wanting to go out but not knowing where, we decided on Coyote Ugly, one of the newer additions to Kyiv’s nightlife. She wanted to dance and I wanted to drink beer and watch her (and other women) dance. It turned out to be a great place for both pursuits.
The fast approaching autumn caught Ukrainians by surprise: the transformation between summer and a golden fall seemed to occur overnight, with warm, sunny days turning to cold, windy ones. Put away till next year are light jackets, replaced by bulkier coats and scarves.
As Kyiv steps into a deep autumn melancholy, it’s the right time to find a good culinary cure for rainy and cold days. When it comes to delicacies, Lviv-style eateries – which offer traditional Galician desserts and modern recipes – are fortunately available in Kyiv as well.
LVIV – They have created more bright and controversial brands in the restaurant business than anyone else in Ukraine. They have become a case study for business schools before they hit 30. They are a trio of restaurateurs in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv with global ambitions.
There are few things more American than the diner. Steel-legged tables and checkered floors, soda fountains and bottomless coffee, jukeboxes blaring oldies while a wait staff in uniform serves up greasy spoon burgers and fries – all integral parts of the overall experience.