One of my favourite things about visiting Kyiv has got to be the food. It is a total foodie destination, with an increasing number of cool and highly instagrammable places to eat and drink. There is a great selection of places to eat to suit all budgets. The cost of living in Ukraine is relatively low compared to other European destinations, so it is a very affordable place to eat like a Queen/King. Here are my top 5 favourite restaurants to try on your trip.
Address: Andriivs'kyi descent, 19, Kyiv
Great for: a taste of luxury
Nestled unassumingly off Andrivskiy descent, Kanapa offers some seriously high end fare. It is renowned as a pioneer of modern Ukrainian cuisine, with some very adventurous dishes on the menu, as well as the traditional (yet slightly reimagined) family favourites.
After a glance at the dishes, you’d be forgiven for assuming that you may need to take out a loan in order to eat here. Prices are very affordable, especially given the quality of food on offer. The tasting menu of 6 courses plus alcohol pairings will set you back a mere €32.
I ordered the: Holubtsi (cabbage rolls), Chicken Kyiv, Marbled Beef Medallions,'Joyful Sorrel' cocktail
Address: Mechnykova St, 2, Kyiv
Good for: feeling fancy
Black Market is somewhere I had not heard much about, but the stunning instagram feed put it firmly on my visit list and I'm so glad I did. The decor is beautiful, with each area designed in a different style. The food exceeded my expectations - the speciality black toasts, in particular were delicious. The waiter was very attentive and even humoured me when I spoke to him in (very broken) Ukrainian. There weren't many people around when I was there, as I had booked a fairly early dinner, so I can't really comment on the atmosphere. I'm sure it would be great when it is a bit more lively.
I ordered: beef/mustard and gorgonzola/pear speciality black toasts, confit duck leg, fruit pavlova,
The Life of Wonderful People
Address: Velyka Vasylkivska St, 36, Kyiv
Great for: cosy dinners
If you enjoy highly instagrammable locations with a friendly atmosphere and great food, then The Life of Wonderful People (TLOWP) has got you covered. Serving up reimagined comfort food, such as the deconstructed Carbonara, it adds a little mystery to your order. The decor mixes up old-time Soviet furniture with modern design and a sprinkling of neon lights for good measure (you can never have enough neon lighting, in my opinion!). The menu took a liitle time to go through, as some of the names don't entirely describe the dish, but this added to the adventure - just pick something which sounds cool and see what arrives. This approach did not disappoint. It is also worth mentioning that this was the only restaurant on the trip where I had no room left for desert. TLOWP, you have defeated me this time!
I ordered: chicken liver pate, 'the most delicious guacamole', 'quite another type of Carbonara'.
Address: Tereshchenkivs'ka St, 10
Great for: traditional food
Your first step into O'Panas is guaranteed to wow. Set in the grounds of Taras Shevchenko park, the wooden building is built around a big tree and is filled with fairy lights which will give you all the feels. There is also an open terrace at the back, with a great view of the park.The food here is very traditional Ukrainian and is a great place to buy your coveted Chicken Kyiv, as well as other national dishes.
I ordered: Varenyky (meat dumplings), Deruny (potato pancakes), Banosh (savoury cornmeal porridge)
Good for: cheap eats
In my opinion, a trip to Ukraine would not be complete without popping in to Puzata Hata for lunch. It is a chain, so can be found all over Ukraine and it is well worth looking out for. Serving all sorts of Ukrainian classics in a canteen-style environment, it is not dressed to impress but that doesn’t make the food any less delicious and the prices will make you love it even more. This is particularly a great place if it is your first time in Ukraine - pick a selection of dishes and share them like Tapas (or eat them all yourself, I wont tell!).
I ordered: Chicken cutlet, mixed Varenyky, Medivyk (Honey Cake)