Food and romance are undeniably entangled. Isn’t the way to a man’s heart through his stomach? Hasn’t it been proven that women are more open for romance on a full stomach? Dating and eating usually go hand in hand and the ritualistic elements that surround them are universal: candlelight, music, wine, a cozy atmosphere and impeccable yet inconspicuous service. At the centre of it all, the offerings to love: food. An agape for two where both hearts and guts rejoice and commune. But enough of this ceremonial tone.
Here are 10 restaurants in Kraków where you can enjoy an unforgettable romantic dinner.
(Do you know of another place to impress your date?)
1. Aqua e Wino
Following a quick renovation, this veteran restaurant remains as exciting as the day it opened. Once inside this chic, somewhat hidden cellar space possesses an atmosphere redolent of downtown Milan, and comes decorated in a minimalist style with cream and mocha colour combinations redolent of a Milano cookie. It merits a place on any ‘must visit’ list you may be keeping.
A small Italian bistro next to St. Mary’s Basilica comes preceded by a big reputation and strong pedigree courtesy of the local dining dynasty behind La Campana and Wesele. Side dishes (order one) are almost as large as the pasta dishes and the value is incredible. The kitchen is situated in full view at the end of the intimate room, where the professionalism of the chefs is on full display.
Discreetly hidden on a side street off Plac Wolnica, this small, intimate wine bar exudes class and taste with a sharp decór of fine stonework and aged rough-hewn timber, an open kitchen, VIP service, and an expertly stocked wine cellar (of course). A great place for business or courtship.
Inside one of Kraków’s most exclusive hotels you’ll find one of its most exclusive restaurants, with high-class service inside an elegant gothic interior that features original frescoes. Gourmet cuisine in a menu that changes every month and is kept simple.
With white textured walls, a timbered ceiling, pleasant atmosphere and soothing music, this quiet, sun-splashed cafe/bistro is perfect. Bring a date in the evening, but you might be wise to reserve a table, as they’re usually full of couples holding hands across the table, splitting a carafe and enjoying delicious European dishes at what has to be one of the Old Town’s most charming wine and dine destinations.
The authorial menu is both daring and ambitious; each dish sounds like several: ‘sweetbreads, ravioli with peas and mint, chanterel mushrooms, and beef cheek’ or ‘goat cheese cake with white chocolate, beetroot ice cream, brownie and walnuts.’ Ideal for a date with wine, the casually dressed staff will assist you with choosing, but make sure you’ve made a reservation.
7. Pod Nosem
An elegant upscale dining experience on Kraków’s oldest street, ‘under the nose’ (as the name translates) of Wawel Castle – tantalising smells from the open kitchen will hit yours upon entry. Utterly professional, and guaranteed to be one of the most unforgettable parts of your experience in Kraków, this place has earned their mention in all of the top restaurant guides.
8. Pod Aniołami
One of the city’s most historic and undeniably charming cellar restaurants, it offers a quintessentially Cracovian encounter with royal medieval Polish cuisine. As you enter you find yourself immersed in a cavernous, candle-lit, almost monastic haven that is incredibly warm and inviting considering that in some of its 13th century dining areas you are a full two levels below the city’s ‘path of Kings.’
Within one of the most coveted locales on Kraków’s market square, nestled among some of the most exclusive tables in town, ‘The Grey Goose’ has confidently established itself as one of the city’s best places for an exquisite, romantic dinner or special event. The kitchen has carved out a unique niche, offering innovative modern dishes borne out of Polish tradition, with an emphasis on poultry.
Perhaps one of the best restaurants in Kraków it offers imported Spanish products and fresh seafood flown in from Venice. This tiny restaurant in Podgórze has the distinction of being Kraków’s only Basque eatery.