Restaurants in Moscow
Restaurants in Moscow offer the fine dining opportunities you are looking for, as well as the home-cooked local flavor that every tourist should try. To truly experience Russia, you must try the pierogi (small stuffed pies), borshch (beetroot soup), blini (crepes) and shchi (cabbage soup). Blini can be picked up at roadside food trucks, much like the creperie trucks in Paris, but there are many Moscow restaurants that specialize in traditional dishes. Khachapuri has a high-design setting but serves excellent Georgian dishes. Sample the khinkali dumplings and mabahdooree--fried trout with a sweet pomegranate sauce. For lunch at Red Square, try Bosco Bar inside the GUM shopping galleria. Like most Moscow restaurants, the prices are steep, but the delicious Mediterranean food alongside Russian classics will tempt you to open your wallet—and excellent cocktails to sip while people-watching.
If you’ve had all the beet soup you can stand, move on to the current fad food—sushi. Some of the best restaurants in Moscow are Japanese. Nobu is the international standard for Japanese dining, and you’re in luck because Moscow has one. Nobu does a bustling business catering to oligarchs and tourists alike, no surprise since the beautiful polished wood interior would make anyone feel like nobility. If you want to splurge on something even more lavish, make a reservation at Turandot, an Asian fusion restaurant that is so luxuriously appointed even Marie Antoinette would feel out of place. Next door is Café Pushkin, another cornerstone of Moscow restaurants, but one that caters to more traditional cuisine. For some guilt-free indulgence ask to see the mineral water—they’ll roll out a cart full of options.
The kitchen spins out its own spicy regional feast. Khachapuri pies ooze pungent cheese; knotted khinkali dumplings squirt peppery meat juices; chicken satsivi is cloaked in a complex walnut sauce tinted yellow with marigold petals.
Order flaky pirozhki and almond croissants at this neo-Baroque pastry annex of the ever-popular Café Pushkin.
Arkady Novikov's Nedalny Vostok ("the Near East") has an Asian-fusion menu that doesn't forget it's in Russia—as if Jean-Georges Vongerichten took a detour into the steppes and picked up a few new tricks.
At this raucous, democratically priced Cossack-themed chain, the food may lack finesse, but the garlic-studded cold pork, sour-creamed braised rabbit, and porcini caps pickled with black-currant leaf are just right with the horseradish-infused vodka.
Have a delicious arugula salad while gazing out at Lenin’s mausoleum and St. Basil’s candy-colored domes—as we do one lunchtime.