Welcome to Katowice and issue 31 of Katowice In Your Pocket – a special edition as we mark 10 years since our first Kato guide! Incredible as it may seem, but Kato has really grown on us. Gone are the days of negative stereotypes about the city, in the past started by locals themselves, or worse, by Polish people who’d never been or dared even consider going! Oh, for the times they are a changin’, and now we have a complete role reversal as the last 10 years have seen an architectural and cultural renaissance of an area neglected during the Communist era. There was a time the city was grey, bleak and only matched in despair by the colour of phlegm people would cough up from their lungs as they breathed in toxins in the air. Since then, the city centre’s coal mine shut down, was transformed into a museum, and work was done to make the rest of the place appealling to locals, tourists and investors alike. In our early days exploring Kato, we were brutally honest about the city’s ugliness, but this is one ugly duckling who is well on its way to becoming a real gem of Silesia! Welcome to Katowice, the city which continues to surprise and humble us.
Kato IYP’s 10th birthday is the perfect occasion to celebrate and re ect on the major changes which have taken place in the city over the last decade. Once the focus of many derisory comments for its socialist realist architecture and potted industrial landscape, Kato has truly undergone an architectural, economic and cultural revolution, hushing its critics. There’s a lot to take in, but let us guide you through some of those changes.
New reviews in this issue
Located just up from the Rynek, Bezowo Czekoladowo specialises in making meringue and chocolate treats, all from high quality produce, and in different varieties from simple meringue to meringue lollipops! Using seasonal fruits with Belgian chocolate, you can buy cakes in various sizes and flavours, with a tea or coffee to go, and if that’s not enough, try their ice cream.
Literally on a street corner – at 3 Maja and Plac Szewczyka, to be precise (right across from Kofeina Bistro, its older sibling!). The interior sums up Katowice with its revamped industrial look, which is enticing on its own. An all day breakfast option offering great creamy scrambled egg with bacon, or baguette with smoked salmon, fried egg, capers and salad!
A little romantic image of Parisian pâtisserie in the heart of Katowice. A pleasant cafe with a delightful choice of pastries at the counter, each of which are lovingly spruced up and covered in a nice glaze. The menu is seasonal and varies dependent on supply of produce, however, regardless of ingredients, an effort is made to have at least a choice of 3-6 different varieties of pastry, including Belgian chocolate and Mango-Maracuya.
Taking inspiration from French and Spanish confectioneries, each treat looks like a handcrafted bundle of fun. The interior of the cafe is modern, with the confectionery a mix of traditional and new – meringues, mono desserts, cakes, and of course, good quality tea and coffee.
The restaurant has a fantastic feel to it, with pots of herbs adorned on the outside wall of the courtyard garden. Now, order your food and watch as it’s all made in the glass walled kitchen outside – try not to put the chefs off from their fine work. You may notice the menu is printed on regular paper, and for good reason, as the menu is seasonal and regularly updated, although they do have their regular dishes.
Inspired by the food truck trend, Shrimp House provides something that in the past was lacking in Polish gastronomy but now gradually springing up here and there, and now now available right in the centre of Katowice – damn good shrimp! Just a stones throw away from the main train station and offering fresh produce, not tiny, frozen, poor quality prawns.