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Notes of a Gourmet

It's hard to say how many times I have visited the capital of Primorsky Territory. Maybe twenty times, maybe thirty... I first visited ten years ago, in 2007. As a point "at the world's end", Vladivostok is developing astoundingly fast. Over the course of ten years, it has turned into a city where one can easily move from Moscow if the Motherland or work calls.

Notes of a Gourmet
Фото: Shutterstock.com
So, you are on a business trip or traveling in a nice seaside city, where salt air smells of the sea, and tourists on the embankment are taking pictures with a monkey. Where to begin your tour of restaurants for tasting and drinking? We assume that you came to Vladivostok during the most pleasant season for this activity, from July to October, so begin with a beautiful view of the sea.

Lunch on the Roof and not Only
The veranda of the Sem Futov restaurant is the very place where you can enjoy local seafood, while overlooking the water and yacht masts. It is not worth waiting for delights from the kitchen and even more so from the wine list, but fresh scallops and an excellent view atone for everything. There are several places in Vladivostok where you can observe the perfect sunset, for example, the Vysota panoramic restaurant, which is located on the top floor of an elite residential building. From the windows you can see the architectural landmark of the city, the bridge across Golden Horn bay. The food corresponds to the place, as you can definitely allow yourself to have lunch just once at an altitude of 207 meters above sea level.

Most often tourists are brought to the Del Mar restaurant. This is really a picturesque corner near so-called beauty avenue, a street where couples in love admire the lights of the city night. The place gets high mark for a delightful view of Vladivostok, but the food is rather mediocre.

Another restaurant which boasts a panoramic view is the Kupol, located behind the bridge in the Meridian hotel. Again, you can have lunch once, but if you are staying in another hotel, then you should not go there on purpose.

Separately, I wish to highlight the restaurant Novik Country Club, located near the Far East Federal University on Russky Island. On the seashore, there is a beautiful wooden veranda drowning in greenery. Here you can try all sorts of Far Eastern delicacies: aquariums with seafood are full of scallops and shellfish. The only downside is the service. I have been there several times, but, alas, nothing has changed. The administrator and the waiters prefer not to notice you. Once with a friend of mine we sat for an hour waiting to place an order, but a miracle never happened, and we had to leave with nothing.

An Ideal Dinner
Perhaps, the best, in all respects, restaurant for pan-Asian cuisine in Vladivostok is the Zuma. The kitchen, the service and the interior deserve an excellent rating. If you want to have a delicious dinner in an environment of nice people, you should definitely come here. I am always delighted to visit this place. And by the way, there are incredible desserts there! They practically offer molecular cuisine.

Recently, while visiting Vladivostok, I have fallen in love with the OGONYOK farm restaurant (located in the Astoria hotel). The people there try their best, and there are really delicious dishes, including those with meat. Visitors have already appreciated the pleasant atmosphere, so book a table in advance. If you pass over some minor flaws, it is in general a worthy place.

The Iz Brasserie is located in the embankment area, and Primorsky Territory legislators and businessmen like to meet here. Local beauties also come to show themselves. While you are dining, you can observe the life of the Vladivostok beau monde. A restaurant with nice cuisine and Moscow prices deserves at least one of your visits.

Nearby, the owners of Iz Brasserie opened the Kitchen chef restaurant. The public flows from one place to the other and back. The menu is varied, it's tasty, so if you're in the center, I recommend it.

On the map of fashion establishments, one more point appeared not so long ago, the Selfi restaurant with a pleasant interior and a wide range of dishes. The location is focused on young people, and the prices for Primorsky Territory are not small, so usually the restaurant is half empty. But it's easy to find a table in the evening. The waiters are first-class and the service is excellent. When they brought me tea with a match (how it got there no one knows), they apologized several times and organized a dessert as a gift.

If you plan a late dinner, then the ideal solution will be the SVOY (the former SAVOY fete). The restaurant located at the beginning of the local Arbat, on Admirala Fokina Street, runs until two in the morning and is known for its cozy atmosphere. Many thanks to the cooks, it's really delicious here! I have been arranging meetings here for several years, so I declare with confidence that the quality of the cuisine has not changed.

And where is the special Far Eastern color, you may ask. And you will be right for asking. Why fly eight hours to sit in a cafe like in Moscow? To taste exotic Asian, go to the Chinese market. In its very center you can taste traditional Chinese dishes at ridiculous prices, but don't let sticky tables bother you, because you came here for authenticity!

Dancing on Water
The Mumiy Troll Music Bar still remains a landmark of the Vladivostok party scene. It works 24 hours 7 days a week, so if your business trip was on Monday, do not worry as the dance floor and karaoke room are open until dawn. At weekends, you can find the most incendiary parties here: in showcase windows you can see dancing girls and on the stage there a rock band performs. Come, you will not regret it.

Those who are not used to staying in one place move to the Druzhba bar on the same street. Here they serve herring, bacon and pickles, a paradise for those nostalgic for Soviet times. Portraits of leaders of the past do not interfere with the unrestrained fun, as everyone dances with joy and sings at the top of their voice. For loud music and delicious beer, go to the Paulaner Bräuhaus near the Zuma; if you seek something more ordinary, then go to the Cot i Clever or the Zabriskie Point.

But the glamorous public of Vladivostok should be looked for in other institutions. I remember 10 years ago, when gambling was still legal and there was a casino in the Hyundai hotel, I first tried my hand at blackjack. Beginners are lucky, so I left with four thousand rubles, while the dollar was 25 at that time! We wasted the winnings in a posh local club, now it's probably already closed, and I do not remember the name. Then it seemed to me that the most beautiful girls live in Vladivostok, only models. Since then nothing has changed: the fashion clubs Cuckoo and SanKemo are attacked by slender, long-legged beauties.

The Afterparty is Not for the Whimps
After a night shindig you want to relax, drink a cup of coffee and finally remember which hotel you stopped at this time. One of the most pleasant breakfasts awaits guests of Primorsky Territory in the STUDIO cafe. Another option is to go to a bakery, a lot of them have opened recently. They make delicious syrniki in the Michel's Bakery. But the richest menu in the morning hours is in the Moloko i Myod restaurant, and I really like the interior of the second floor.

At dawn, while restoring the memory of your night route, you realize that the city has really become younger and more dynamic. More and more restaurants have appeared, and, most importantly, the quality of the cuisine and the level of service are constantly growing with each new restaurant. Honestly, many Russian cities have much to learn from Vladivostok.
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