Before my trip to Gdansk I only had a vague idea of Polish food in my mind: potatoes, sauerkraut and pork. But after dining in Gdansk this idea had changed. Gdansk is on the coast so they serve a lot of fish, and even meat dishes were not heavy as I had thought.
I wanted to taste local dishes, that’s what you do when you travel. Here are my best picks from the many restaurants in Gdansk.
For you, my suggestions for dining in Gdansk Old Town:
Pod Lososiem Restaurant
Pod Lososiem Restaurant in the Old Town (ul Szeroka 52-54) is one of the oldest restaurants in Gdansk and has a history of hundreds of years. Today it’s run by the third generation of the same family. They told us about the history and also showed us around in the interiors.
Presidents and Politicians
This is the place in Gdansk where many visiting politicians, presidents and other celebrities have chosen to dine, among them George Bush, Francois Mitterrand, Angela Merkel, Princess Anne, Margaret Thatcher, the Pope and of course Lech Walesa who is from Gdansk.
We dined here on our second night in Gdansk. At the same time there was a very special occasion taking place, a memorial dinner of the Polish president (from Gdansk) that dramatically died in a plane crash exactly five years ago, together with more than 90 people.
Salmon and Goldwasser
Pod Lososiem means The Salmon. To start with I took a plate of salmon specialties. For the main dish I just had to try their specialty, the Three presidents’ beef sirloin that was served to George Bush, Richard von Weizsäcker and Lech Walesa in 1997. The beef was enormous, 300 g, but they were happy to serve me a half portion of it. Everything was very tasty here, the starter, the main dish, the red wine and the dessert, and you’re definitely not hungry after dining here.
We also tasted the original Goldwasser Vodka with gold flakes that Pod Lososiem is famous for. The recipe combines over 20 herbs and roots. We thought it tasted anise and maybe orange and if you like 40 % alcohol you surely enjoy the flavor of Goldwasser.
As you can guess, Pod Lososiem can be a bit expensive, depending on which country you come from.
Read more about the place and its history on the website of Pod Lososiem Restaurant>>
Another restaurant where I have been dining in Gdansk is named Velevetka. Velevetka is a Kashubian restaurant right in the heart of the old town, opposite the town hall and the Neptune statue. The restaurant was down in the cellar and it was very small, you felt like being invited in a private home. The decoration against the white walls was all Kashubian themed. Simple and stylish.
Velevetka has local Kashubian specialties on the menu. Kashubia is an area west of Gdansk. To start with we took a potato cake filled with smoked bacon and Kashubian fish soup with mussels. The potato cake portion looked so pretty I had to wait before starting to destroy it.
Most guests seemed to take a main dish that was served in a loaf of bread and so did we. I took goulash with buckwheat in wholemeal bread (the one on the right below). It tasted like traditional food, not spicy at all, but there really was too much to eat.
The one on the left is pork chop with sauerkraut and roasted potatoes, also in a loaf of bread.
We really enjoyed our old-fashioned regional dinner and the atmosphere of Velevetka. Velevetka is both cheap and homey, a different experience.
More about Velevetka >>
One night we simply dined in our hotel restaurant. We stayed at Hanza Hotel on Motlawa river and Kokieteria is in the hotel. The style is modern international, but in the summer you can sit outside on the terrace and watch people passing by on the waterfront. You can see old grainhouses on the other side of the river.
Kokieteria is said to serve regional Pomeranian food so we tried to pick local specialties. The food was very fresh. To start with I took Baltic herring with apple horseradish mousse. Good and not too salty!
For the main dish we took goose breast and duck leg, and house wine or beer according to our preferences. My duck leg with millet, horse radish and parsley paste was again fresh and good! And goat cheese with chocolate and buttermilk as dessert was not a bad idea.
Behind this link you can read more about the Kokieteria Restaurant >>
Restaurants outside of Gdansk
In my other blog posts on Poland I am telling about these two restaurants in the surroundings of Gdansk, the Delmonico Cut Steakhouse in Sopot and the restaurant of Palac Ciekocinko in Kashubia. Here are the links: