Dom na Arkitekta: "Not One For A Mid-Winter Visit" Top 5 Page for this destination Varna Restaurant Tip by johngayton

Varna Restaurants: 54 reviews and 99 photos

  Attractive Building
by johngayton
  • Attractive Building - Varna
      Attractive Building
    by johngayton
  • Elegant Interior - Varna
      Elegant Interior
    by johngayton

The aptly-named "Architect's House" is a superb example of the Bulgarian Black Sea National Revival style with its solidly-timbered upper storeys overhanging the stone-built ground floor.

Inside too the building showcases the period's craft woodworking with dark-panelled wainscotting and ornately-carved detail.

The restaurant is elegantly laid up with formal place settings, cleverly folded starched napkins and tempting displays of the house's range of fine wines. The menu is Mehana-style, though the prices veer towards that of a more formal restaurant, with most of the commonplace Bulgarian classics represented.

Unfortunately on my only visit, so far, it was mid-January and the city was under about five inches of snow. I did get a cheery "Dobar Vecher" welcome from all four members of staff as I entered to find the place otherwise deserted. (I should note though that the following evening when I went to my regular haunt, Orient, just down the road that was reasonably busy despite the snow).

The waitress, who spoke reasonable English, explained, as she handed me the menu, that because of the snow they weren't able to offer the whole menu. She recommended the house special "Knuckle of Pork" as that had been freshly-cooked and so I went along with that.

Favorite Dish: Being a chilly evening I decided to start with the "Sirene po Shopski" which is sort of the baked version of "Shopska Salad". This was good, a warming bowl of tangy white cheese and luscious tomatoes, and accompanied by a fruity Burgaska Muskatova rakiya.

I was less impressed with the pork though. I think there was a bit of poetic licence used in the term "freshly-cooked" as the hunk of meat that I got was dry and flavourless and the lack of any sensible accompaniement, such as a bit of mash potato, did nothing to help. Ach well it was edible - but it certainly needed a beer to help it go down.

Finishing with a coffee brought the bill to over 30 leva, which, even by city standards, was on the expensive side for a simple dinner. I suppose that explains why the place was deserted whilst Orient was doing OK.

Having said that this was a friendly place and even though deserted the staff seemed to be having a little party amongst themselves which at least gave it a bit of atmosphere.

Address: ul Musala 10
Price Comparison: more expensive than average
Directions: In the city centre, just off the main square, opposite the Musala Grand Palace Hotel.
Price: US$21-30
Rating: 3
Theme: Local

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 26, 2010
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