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My adventures in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, continued with me diving even further into its food and beer culture. Join me as I go on the ultimate Ukrainian food and craft beer tour of Kyiv, Ukraine!
My afternoon kicked off on my way to an underground pub called Punkraft with Margarita, from Tours by Locals.
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Inside, I met Ramez, who told me they have 24 types of beer on tap, most of which are Ukrainian.
I went with the Hathor Milk Stout before heading into the kitchen, where they were grilling a ribeye steak with nothing added on it.
I enjoyed a raisin-y Veligden IPA with my steak. The steak was perfect! It was local, juicy, and had a nice char on the outside.
My next dish was Vorschmack, a popular Jewish dish that includes butter, pickled onions, cream cheese, apple, herring, and mayonnaise. You mix them all in a bowl yourself and eat it on toasted bread.
I loved the briny herring, sweet apple, and creamy mayo! I paired it with a beer that contained salt and coriander. It cut the creaminess well.
Next were vareniki, which are Ukrainian dumplings. They contain cherries and pair well with a Tonka Imperial Stout and sour cream. These vareniki were red because the dough was mixed with beet juice.
The vareniki were sweet and juicy, and the sour cream wasn’t too sour. It was my favorite dish! The Tonka Imperial Stout was chocolatey, like a melted brownie!
Next, Margarita and I walked through the lower town to our next stop, Kanapa, a restaurant located inside a large, 19th-century home.
Anna showed me how to make two types of vareniki: potato and mushroom! I even tried to make some myself!
At our table, we had homemade cordials, with is made of vodka, fruit, and berries. We also had red borscht, lard, black vareniki with bacon filling, pheasant pate, gelatin rabbit, and baked eggplant!
The borscht contained beef, pork, plums, beets, and sour cream. It came with baked fat and raw fat. The first cordials was bitter!
The borscht had so many flavors and was perfectly spiced. It was hearty, oily, and tasty! I enjoyed the raw, gelatinous lard and the baked lard with gooseberry.
The berry cordial was amazing, as was the baked eggplant with red peppers. It was sweet and moist and came with a crispy potato chip.
The rabbit meat in gelatin was an incredible combination with mustard. I followed that with a gingery cordial and the black vareniki with herring caviar, dill, and sour cream. They’re also stuffed with herring!
The pheasant pate was incredible on bread. It was incredibly creamy! Then, they made an amazing blackthorn sorbet with liquid nitrogen at our table!
We also had a chocolate ball containing pork fat and the most popular dessert in the city, Kyiv cake, which is crunchy and has many layers like baklava.
The sorbet was sour and healthy-tasting, and the chocolate ball was so good! Meanwhile, the Kyiv cake was crumbly and contained cognac! The final cordial contained apple and hazelnut.
They gave me a gift before I left, and we headed down to the Drunken Monkey Bar, where I met Maria.
They have over 20 beers on tap. I started with a light and crisp Indian Pale Lager and some cheese balls, followed by a brown Imperial ale, a sour fruited gose, and their most popular beer, the Drunken Monkey IPA.
Then, I had an Imperial stout and some amazing pate and marmalade on toast. Their Imperial pumpkin ale reminded me of Oktoberfest. They even gave me 4 beers for the road!
Where have you been?
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My name is David Hoffmann. For the last 13 years, I have been traveling around the world in search of unique culture, food, and history! Since starting David’s Been Here in 2008, I have traveled to over 1,200 destinations in 83 countries, which I welcome you to check out on my YouTube channel, travel blog, and social media sites.
I focus a great deal on food and historical sites, as you probably have seen! I love to experience the different flavors that each destination has to offer, from casual street food to gourmet restaurant dining. I’m also passionate about learning about the local history and culture.