Tuesday’s Treats #157

The Ocean Plaza Food Court

Location: Kiev, Ukraine

I’m sorry that I do not remember the name of this restaurant, but it is upstairs in the Ocean Plaza, just above the aquarium. We were able to sit at a nice table with comfortable chairs and gaze down at the aquarium. Such a fun experience!

I ordered a latte and asked the waitress if I could get vanilla or caramel syrup. She asked if I’d like caramel or chocolate. I said, “Definitely!” Oh, it was so delicious!!

My husband got the salmon with rice, and I ordered the grilled veggies, because I wasn’t terribly hungry. The veggies were a little different twist with the latte, but they were good anyway. My husband said the salmon was really good!

Because I can’t remember the name of the restaurant, I don’t have the website, but I will post the mall website.

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Tuesday’s Treats #118

Pasta Mia

Location: Rivne Oblast, Ukraine (Kyivska vul. 84)

Ok, so I’ll be honest. When our translator and driver said we’d stop to eat at a little cafe, along the highway between Lviv and Rivne, and we pulled up to the gas station here, I was a bit skeptical…well, a lot skeptical. Here, in the US, when you stop for a bite to eat at most gas stations, you better just grab a prepackaged bag of chips and a coke, cuz if you eat in the “cafe,” you may very well wish you hadn’t later! Lol!

If you find yourself in this same scenario, and you pull into this cafe/gas station, go ahead and order up a plate! It’s that good! Our translator got the pasta with Parmesan cheese, and I had a bite. Yum! She got a cappuccino as well that looked delicious. I got a latte and an apple strudel kind of thing out of the display case (so sorry. I don’t remember the name of it!). They warmed it, and it was absolutely delicious! They had several pasta dishes and coffees from which to choose, and many more items in the display case, but like I said, I had been skeptical to start; so, I didn’t take in all the choices. The menu is also in Ukrainian; so, I couldn’t read it. The connected store has a nice selection of drinks and snack items as well; so, if you’re not in the mood for pasta, they’ve got you covered. 😉

It was a nice little break on our 3 hour drive in the snow from Lviv to Rivne that day, and I will cherish the memories made with sweet friends. Here is the TripAdvisor site for you to find a little more info, as they don’t have a website that I could find.

Tuesday’s Treats #105

Tsarske Selo

Location: Kiev, Ukraine

This restaurant is so authentic to Ukraine, and if you are visiting Kiev, you need to place it on your “must see (and eat).” The atmosphere is set in rural country inn or home, and as you sit at your table looking throughout the restaurant, you can almost imagine being in someone’s countryside home. It is very cozy and comfortable. The waiters and waitresses are all in traditional Ukrainian attire, and most evenings, there are a variety of singing groups who will come to your table and serenade a song or two.

The food is delicious, and if you can’t read the Ukrainian on the menu, no worries. Just flip it over for English; however, not being too familiar with authentic Ukrainian dishes, I opted to be safe and got the chicken Kiev. It was absolutely delicious! The lattes are tasty, and one in our party got the cherry dumplings and said they were scrumptious. The bread they serve before hand is tasty, but if you’re American, you may be surprised they don’t serve traditional dairy butter with it. They serve a beet horseradish, a very spicy mustard and a “butter” made from pig fat. This is, actually, a staple of Ukraine that came into play during their long years of famine. It is a little too greasy and not too tasteful for my liking, more akin to pure lard, but for the Ukrainian natives who were hosting us, it was an appreciated topping. They also serve before the meal small, square pieces of toasted bread with a pickle and a little square of pig fat (kind of like a substitute for bacon). The bread was tasty with a hint of garlic, but I skipped again on the fat square. It all definitely adds to the authenticity of the restaurant, and I wouldn’t change a thing!

In the evening hours, a groups of Ukrainian singers will come to serenade, and apparently, there are different groups. My husband was here in September, and there was a group of all men who sang traditional Ukrainian songs, and one man whistles like a bird. I watched the video, and it was amazing! The night we were there, it was a duet. The woman played the accordion and sang, and the man had a deep, burly voice and distinguished mustache. They sang strong and beautiful, singing of a handsome fella loving a beautiful woman.

It was simply a delightful evening, and I hope every time we are in Kiev, we might get to visit this restaurant. You leave feeling just a little more Ukrainian than when you walked in.

For more information, please check out their website and their Trip Advisor rating.