From Russia with Grub

From Russian Mules to Russian Dumplings, Moscow has it all. The history is without a doubt the standout but the buzz of the lively restaurant scene is an enjoyable side dish.

A morning stroll through Red Square is a requirement in Moscow; the chill in the air is almost as thick as the remarkable history that permeates through every building. The site where Lenin rests, named Lenin’s Mausoleum is an essential visit. Reflecting on the significance of the place itself is something you must take a moment to enjoy. From the coronation of numerous Russian Tsars to the defeated Nazi armies throwing down their flags after battle. Time spent walking and soaking in the importance of the surrounds is well spent.  Staying within walking distance from Red Square at the Royal Aurora Hotel, it’s a slow meander back home. As a Butler is included in every room, it is easy to feel a little Tsar’ish, however with the historic buzz and hive of activity from bars and restaurants it’s time for a refresh before venturing out and trying some traditional Russian fare.

A 15-minute walk from the hotel is a rather indiscriminate restaurant named Café Pushkin. Not overly tempting from the outside, upon entry it has the feel of a 19th century aristocrat’s house, decadent wooden walls filled with ancient books and the ambiance of pre-revolutionary Russia. From the menu that looks like a newspaper, to the country manor furniture, this place impresses which is certainly differing from the ‘café’ in the name. The Pushkin actually originates from the famous Russian poet, Alexander Pushkin. The waiters and waitresses are all dressed in the traditional attire of Russian housemaids and are as attentive as they look. The menu showcases most of the expected Russian fare making it a good spot to try some traditional food. Given Pushkin is in-fact open 24 hours, it makes it possible to pop in at anytime, so a late night dinner is a wonderful option. Diving into a traditional Russian dumpling soup at the wee hours of the evening in a traditional and opulent setting is a novelty.

On the stroll back to the hotel down the historic streets, a stop in at a world famous nightspot for a late night tipple comes highly recommended. ‘City Space’ has massive panoramic windows looking down on all of Moscow. Situated within the Swissotel on the 33rd floor, the view is sensational. Peering out to the night you can spot all the way to the Kremlin and the massive skyscrapers of Moscow city. It seems almost rude to not try the Moscow Mule made with some of Russia’s finest vodka, sipping away and taking it all in, it is a great place to end an evening.

Unconventional Conventions visit Moscow as part of their Silk Road Convention in November 2016 and staying at the Marriott Royal Aurora Hotel. More information HERE

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Dr Gary Kilov (1:42)
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