When we travel, food memories always linger the longest and Warsaw was no exception. We recently spent 48 hours in Poland's capital and in that time managed to eat and drink our way across the city. Here are our top 10 food finds on our city break in Warsaw.
Orange and Rose Doughnuts
Warsaw is an easy place to sate a sweet tooth. We stumbled upon Cukiernia Pawłowicz along pedestrianized Chmielna and were drawn in by the lovely smells wafting from the place and the long queue. Queues usually indicate that there will be something good at the end for those with patience. In this case, we sampled an orange and rose doughnut. This glazed confection was topped with candied orange pieces and filled with sweet rose jam. The flavor combination was unusual but yummy.
Sip a Beer in a Warsaw City Center Beer Garden
Hidden in the back alleys behind Chmielna are a number of beer gardens. Sip a Polish beer at prices you'd never get at home (2-3 EUR a pint) while enjoying a bit of sunshine.
Experience Traditional Polish Food and Folk Music at Warsaw's Restauracja Dawne Smaki
I love Polish food although it can be heavy so bring your appetite! Restauracja Dawne Smaki combines the best of Polish food with a side of folk music in a garden setting for a lovely al fresco dining experience in Warsaw. We sampled perogies filled with cheese and topped with bits of lard.
Potato pancakes with mushroom sauce were definitely a highlight.
Sample Lody Tradycyjne (Traditional Polish Ice Cream) in Old Town Warsaw
Summer in Warsaw is the perfect time to sample Polish Lody Tradycyjne (traditional homemade ice cream). We stumbled upon an ice cream shop and were lured in by the low prices: about a euro for 2 scoops! I tried cream and wild strawberry and Scott sampled forest berry.
We stood and ate our ice cream on the Old Market Square admiring the reconstructed buildings and reflecting on Warsaw's history.
Smoked Cheese and Cranberries for a Taste of Moden Warsaw
The New Market Square in Warsaw features lovely sidewalk cafes serving up modern Polish cuisine. We sampled smoked cheese and cranberries at Freta33 washed down with a pint of old fashioned Polish beer.
The food in Poland can be a bit heavy so a dose of caffeine is in order at least a couple times a day to keep energy levels up. We discovered Warsaw's WakeCup, an artisan coffee place serving a well-crafted cuppa. Try a cappuccino with a slice of blueberry cake for a perfect afternoon treat.
Sample Polish Craft Beer and Cider at JaBeerWocky
After dark, we made our way to JaBeerWocky a popular craft beer bar with an outlet that also sells craft cider and whiskey. We enjoyed a Polish cider made with locally sourced apples for a refreshing treat and then walked next door to the main bar where more than 15 taps featuring beers from around the world greeted us. Since we were in Warsaw, it was a no-brainer to stick to the local beers.
A frothy saison hit the spot.
Eat on the Cheap at a Milk Bar, A Communist Era Throwback
Milk bars are a quintessential Polish eating experience. Harkening back to the communist era, milk bars serve up hearty Polish cuisine at rock bottom prices. We tried Bambino Bar located between the city center and Łazienki Park.
Hearty borscht with filling dumplings...
potato pancakes served with sugar...
High End Refreshments at Warsaw's Niezłe Ziółko
Our experience at Bambino Bar stood in stark contrast to Niezłe Ziółko. This airy cafe standing just up the street from the milk bar features high end snacks and beverages. The sun was shining in Warsaw and it was extremely warm when we visited so we stopped for a homemade lemonade and gourmet soda. The floor to ceiling windows were open for an al fresco dining experience.
Lody Szronowe! Handcrafted Summer Snow cones
No summer visit to Warsaw is complete without a snow cone! (lody szronowe). We noticed a queue outside a small window just to the side of a local liquor store.
The ice is freshly carved from a huge block and then doused in sweet syrup. We sampled a 'Good Morning Sunshine' which was a combination of watermelon and blood orange for a fantastic refresher in the afternoon heat.