A few hundred places, from food trucks run by enthusiasts to restaurants crowned with impressive gothic vaults.
How to have it sussed? Honestly? It’s not easy at all. So we will benefit from the recommendations of our communities and send you to few Krakow’s dead certs. These are places where we take our friends, celebrate or just drop by for lunch.
After years of fascination with Italian cuisine and disputes over where they serve the best pizza, the time has come for wars over ramen that have been breaking out in Krakow’s social media. Akita (Węgłowa 4) or maybe Ramen People (Czysta 8)? Fierce discussions can continue for several days! If you prefer Korean cuisine, drop by for bibimbap to Sweet Life (Warszawska 7) or Oriental Spoon (Paderewskiego 4) and steamed dumplings, and bao to Mandu (Paderewskiego 4). The new star of Asian cuisine in Krakow is Thai restaurant Molam (Rajska 3). You may not find a pad thai here, but several culinary critics and foodies have already become addicted to the place.
No worries, we will help you to find culinary happiness also if you don’t get along with coriander, fish sauce or kimchi. Just visit the popular ZaKładka Bistro de Cracovie (Jozefińska 2), specializing in French cuisine, and recently also light version of Polish cuisine, or just sit down for lunch in front of the Bazaar Bistro (Meiselsa 24). Have some ravioli, cappelletti with beef and a Neapolitan pizza in Nolio (Krakowska 27). Or simply sink your teeth into the seasoned beef and offal that Ed Red (Sławkowska 3) is famous for.
Euskadi (Kazimierza Brodzińskiego 4)
The place may not be big, but it serves loads of good food. In a tiny form, i.e. in the form of Basque tapas. Before he settled in Podgorze, Euskadi’s owner Damian Surowiec used to work in a number of renowned locations, including the Barrafina tapas bar in London. One of Euskadi’s blockbusters is soft-shell crab in sepia gravy and pork tenderloin. Check out regularly the restaurant’s Facebook fanpage to find out what delicacies arrived at the Krakow restaurant straight from a market near Venice and from Spanish suppliers.
Karakter (Brzozowa 17)
This is probably the most often recommended restaurant in Krakow. The regulars used to joke that the key to Karakter’s success is the generously added butter and certainly there is a touch of truth in it. In the menu you will find mostly meat and offal, but the location is also famous for mussels. Here, you can stop by for a three-course lunch or spend the entire evening, starting with tartare steak and culminating with goat’s cheese cheesecake, and then you can indulge yourself with natural wines in between the meals. The atmosphere here is ideal for celebrating a joyful meal. Daniel Myśliwiec’s cuisine has already gained a lot of fans, so remember to book a table!
Zazie Bistro (Józefa 34)
It is here where, along with the subsequent cubes of butter, Daniel Myśliwiec began to melt the palates of Krakow inhabitants. Now it is Adrian Pycia who’s in charge in Zazie. The menu offers French classics: onion soup, pate, tarts, potato casseroles, mussels, beef Burgundy, snails and souffles. And as befits a bistro, the prices are very reasonable here. Have a look at the board with the meals of the day and don’t be afraid to order offal (the location has always been famous for thymus), and for dessert have a forest fruit pudding and brioche drizzled with crème anglaise.
Pizzeria 00 (Kalwaryjska 32)
You don’t argue with facts. Period. The same goes for pizza: everyone has their own favourite one. However, we feel obliged to give you some advice. We asked for a recommendation the most Italian of the Cracovians, namely Bartek Kieżun, known as Krakowski Makaroniarz (literally, Krakow’s Pasta Expert), a culinary journalist, blogger and author of the book “Italia do zjedzenia”. And this guy says that in Krakow the choice is simple: Pizzeria 00. If you happen to be travelling by car and you are a fan of this Italian pastry, check out Bartek’s favourite place: En Plato located in Bibice near Krakow.
Meat&Go (Dolnych Młynów 10)
Raw interior, very lively in the evenings, high tables and… sandwiches. Just sandwiches and the sandwiches. Come over here for a great reuben with Swiss cheese and sauerkraut, for a Cuban sandwich with marinated pork, Mangalitsa ham and sausage or for lampredotto, which is an Italian-style soft roll stuffed with tender slices of tripe (beef belly). Each one of these sandwiches is pure poetry: perfect bread, mouth-melting meat, perfectly composed ingredients and extras. It’s a carnivore’s paradise!
GMT – Georgian Wine&Art Gallery (Bytomska 23)
A tiny Georgian bistro with a large garden found shelter in the house hidden between blocks of flats in one of Krakow’s housing estates. Home-like atmosphere, decent, simple and affordable food. Indulge yourselves in the aromatic ajapsandali, khachapuri and mutabal, preferably with a bottle of Georgian wine. And on Thursday, come and have chinkalis! For enthusiasts of Georgian cuisine, we recommend also Smaki Gruzji (Dietla 33).
Mezzalians (Kalwaryjska 66)
A restaurant run with a heartfelt passion and tenderness serving Lebanese and Lebanese/Syrian cuisine and dishes inspired by Middle Eastern cuisine. Ideally, you should come here with a bunch of friends and order snacks, as this place is famous for its meze. Hummus, Mtabbal with mutton, roasted cauliflower, fattoush – this list already shows that this place will be enjoyed equally by vegans, vegetarians and carnivores. The latter are particularly fond of shish tawook, grilled chicken skewers marinated in a Lebanese garlic toum.
Youmiko Sushi (Józefa 2)
One of the tiniest yet best sushi bars in Krakow, highly recommended by the local community. Be it lunch or omakase, you will leave this place delighted. It is definitely worth ordering vegan sushi here — even such a trifle as nigiri with marinated tomato is unforgettable, just like chirashi-zushi. Sushi goes best with a glass of natural wine or sake. Be sure to book your table in advance and remember that on Sundays only vegan sushi is served. While waiting to be served, admire the graphics hanging over the bar, by Mateusz Kołek — a Krakow artist.
Café Manggha (Marii Konopnickiej 26)
Light, beautifully served dishes inspired by Asian cuisine, mouthwatering breakfasts and one of the most breathtaking views of the city, along with the magnificent architecture of the Manggha Museum of Japanese Art and Technology. Enjoy a lazy afternoon on the sunny terrace and celebrate tea served in dishes crafted by local ceramics artist Andrzej Mędrek.
Hana Sushi (Kupa 12)
Fancy meeting your friends and eating something Asian, but one feels like sushi, one feels like ramen, and the other would prefer to eat something Korean? If you want to get out of the deadlock, visit Hana Sushi, recommended by our communities and appreciated by Michelin inspectors. You can also taste other Korean and Japanese delicacies, such as steamed dumplings or tempura, but also… ceviche. Dare not to be afraid of this intercontinental fusion!
Ramen People (Czysta 8)
Ramen for the beginners and advanced — a simple and clear menu will allow you to straightforwardly choose the brew and ingredients (there are two items for vegans!). It is hard to recommend something specific, as the difference between assari and kotteri is just like between broth and sour soup. Our communities are enthralled by collagen-rich, dense tantanmen. Interestingly enough, ramen has been matched with wine here. You should also visit Wschód (Miodowa 4, in the arcade) — a second place run by the same owners, where you will find mainly dishes inspired by Asian street food.