Eating Out in Krakow and Polish Food in General

When preparing for my trip, I got asked a lot: “how will the food be?”. I honestly didn’t have a lot of awareness myself as I had not researched the topic. There was definitely no need to worry in Krakow!

Krakow, Cracovia, main square, plaza, Poland, beautiful, statue

Krakow’s Main Square is said to be the most beautiful in Europe

First, let me say that eating out is cheap. I am not talking going to a hole in the wall or a mom-and-pops. I am talking even at nicer restaurants. On the top end of the scale, places we never visited since we felt the food we were having at mid level restaurants was outstanding enough and very low priced, a main entree could run up to $25 (at least, based on a non-scientific sampling from my walking around). At the restaurants I ate (most were recommended by the people who rented us their apartment), a main entree was no more than $8-10.

Now to the quality. Every meal was delicious. Whether the veal scallopini at Cherubino‘s or the pork knuckle in honey and plums at Polskie Jadlo, every dish was spectacular. House wines were not shabby either. I didn’t get to eat desserts at every meal simply because I was usually stuffed by then but I did have ice cream a couple of times and it was double-darn good ice CREAM! The real stuff.  I did eat a cream cake that the late Pope John Paul II favored in his birthtown of Wadowice and a rather large and delicious doughnut on the train to Czestochowa!

cream cake, Karol Wojtyla, John Paul II, Wadowice, Poland, photo, travel

Cream cake – delicious!

doughnut, Poland, Polish food, chocolate, photo, travel

“Bite me!”

Places we visited were:

  • Kuchnia i Wino (ul. Jozefa in the Mazimierz district, http://www.cracow-life.com/eat/restaurants_details/61-Kuchnia_i_Wino)
  • Cherubino (on a side street from ul. Jana called ul. Tomaszka, http://www.cherubino.pl/restaurant_krakow.html)
  • Polskie Jadlo (ul. Jana, http://www.cracow-life.com/eat/restaurants_details/1272-Polskie_Jadlo)
  • Miod i Wino (ul. Slawkowska, http://www.cracow-life.com/eat/restaurants_details/270-Miod_i_Wino).

We also enjoyed bakeries (“cukiernias“) around the Old Town and a cafe in a square in the must-see Kazimierz district called TeD (Plac Nowy 7) – very nice loungey feel to it.

The only thing that bothered me a little bit about restaurants is that, while they have a non-smoking section, it is practically non-functioning as you still get to breathe enough secondhand smoke to lose a little of the sense of smell…

So what is the Polish food I experienced?  Well, lots of meat (especially pork), potatoes (fried or baked, of different shapes), little in terms of greens (unless you order a salad), bread (served with lard in the more traditional places I went to; yes, LARD but it had bacon to probably make it healthier 🙂 ), etc..

Lard, food, Krakow, Poland, photo, travel

The pot on the left is lard for your bread!

A lot of the pork was fried which reminded me of my favorite Cuban dish but the pork knuckle was not fried (it was very tender!).

pork knuckle, Polish food, Krakow, Poland, bread

My best meal in Krakow: the pork knuckle cleverly served. Flavorful and tender!

I also enjoyed pierogis (many options as far as filings), and pancakes stuffed with spinach and ricotta cheese.

food, Krakow, Poland, Polish, travel, photo, pancake

Ricotta cheese and spinach -stuffed pancakes

OK, I better stop here because I am making myself hungry!  Hope you get to experience Polish food – in Poland or elsewhere!

Comments

  1. marcin says:

    Cukiernia is a pastry shop rather than a bakery, which is called piekarnia in Polish. Otherwise, a great piece on my homeland:)

    • Thanks, Marcin, for clarifying! I think I just knew I was in for good stuff whenever I saw the word Cukiernia on a sign 🙂

  2. How did you like Cherubino? It opened after I moved out of the city (Krakow’s my hometown), so I’ve only been there once.

    I’m a vegetarian, so the Polish food options for me are generally all sorts of dumplings & crepes – love them! Whenever I go back to Poland, I go for zapiekanki (pizza bread), gofry (waffles) and obwarzanki (pretzels) – pretty much street food. YUM

    • I didn’t sample much of the street food myself, probably because I was stuffed with all that I ate at every meal! Gofry would have been good to try… Cherubinos had a nice ambience – I am surprised it’s been there 18 yrs by now! I live in a town where not many restaurants live that long! The food was very good. I think that may have been one of the few places where I had had some solid greens as part of my meal.

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