Budapest has been getting a lot of buzz for its sudden appearance on the international culinary scene since the Michelin guide began throwing stars in our direction like a foodie ninja. While this is all great and flattering, it’s important not to overlook the long history of elegant dining to be had in Budapest's 'old school' restaurants, all of which have weathered multiple wars and oppressive regimes. In terms of film locations in Budapest, in this list of three restaurants that are over 100 years old, you can find fastidiously restored interiors and old-world charm. Have a look below for a taste of Budapest’s oldest, grandest restaurants.
The eatery known as the ‘Apostles’ has been around since 1902, when it opened as a beer hall specializing in German brew. Popular with actors, writers and poets, its location in the heart of central Pest also made it a popular tourist destination (no surprise, it still is). The grand room's interiors have been lovingly preserved but also kept up to date with a recent restoration.
A mainstay for writers of the golden era of Hungarian literature, the Nyugat, or Western movement, the Central Coffeehouse has been running on and off since 1887. While it suffered under the Socialist era, it has made a comeback as a first-class restaurant while at the same time keeping itself available to more bohemian types as a casual coffee house. The huge and open interior, laden with history and the scents drifting in from the kitchen, make for one of the city’s more sophisticated dining experiences.
If you like Gypsy music and goose liver, Karpatia is your place. Open since 1877, the restaurant is a city landmark. The intricate hand painted and gilded walls have been around since the 1920s, a well-preserved example of fin-de-siècle design, Karpatia communicates the atmosphere of a Transylvanian lodge.
In terms of film locations in Budapest, the city's oldest restaurants are up to the task an readily available.
M. Ellis is a writer and gives manuscript critiques.