The Best Restaurants In The Kremlin District, Moscow
The Kremlin district is the beating heart of Russia‘s capital, and a site of cultural, historical, political, and architectural interest. Tourists naturally gravitate towards this fascinating district, which boasts of iconic monuments such as the Red Square, St Basil’s, and those infamous red Kremlin walls among its main sights. The popularity of this district makes it easy to fall into one of the many over-priced tourist traps that have sprung up. Fear not – follow our guide to discover the very best of the Russian food scene in the European metropolis that is Moscow.
Red Square's GUM shopping center by night | Courtesy of Marianna Hunt
Located on the Red Square itself, no other restaurant in Moscow can boast of such fantastic, close-ups views of Russia’s most iconic sights. Diners at Bosco Café tuck into gourmet breakfasts, lunches, and dinners with St Basil’s, the Kremlin walls, and Lenin’s Mausoleum practically on their laps. These views are only enhanced by Bosco’s fine summer terrace which offers visitors one of the most picturesque locations in the whole city. Situated inside Moscow’s most exclusive shopping center, GUM, this unbeatably central location is the perfect refueling point after a long day of designer window shopping or sight-seeing.
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The location of Café Russe, in the designer Ritz-Carlton Hotel, makes it one of the chicest spots in Moscow. The menu here is the epitome of haute-Russian cuisine. At Café Russe, traditional delicacies are transformed by outstanding quality ingredients – with superb results. After your meal, why not pop up to the Ritz-Carlton’s cocktail bar, the O2 lounge? The glass roof arcing in a dome over the lounge offers a breathtaking view of the night-sky and a panorama across the Moscow skyline, featuring the Kremlin, the Bolshoi Theater, and other awe-inspiring sights. Be blown away by the knowledge of the bar’s ‘vodka sommelier‘ who will guide you through the best choices of the O2 lounge’s menu of 400 different vodkas.
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In Soviet times, stolovayas were government-run canteens that aimed to provide the working population with good value, hearty food. It seems difficult to imagine then that Moscow’s most expensive and designer shopping center, GUM, would house such a relic of the Soviet past; but the fantastic prices and warm helpings of traditional Russian food have ensured the survival of this USSR artifact in the glamorous walls of GUM. Expect meat cutlets, beef Stroganoff, and steaming soups aplenty. Its self-service set-up also makes it great choice for grabbing a quick lunch during your exploration of Moscow. Address & telephone number: Stolovaya No 57, GUM, Red Square, 3, Moscow, Russia, +7(495) 620-3129
The hiked-up prices and gimmicky tourist traps of Moscow’s center can make finding good quality food difficult for those travelling on a budget. But luckily, Khinkalnaya has arrived to remedy this. This Georgian restaurant will introduce visitors to the delights of this nation’s cuisine that have charmed the hearts and stomachs of the Russian population and made Georgian food Russia’s adopted ‘national cuisine’. The restaurant derives its name from just one of those Caucasian delicacies – the infamous khinkali dumplings. Soft doughy breads, piquant marinades, succulent grilled kebabs, and superb wine are just a few of the reasons behind the popularity of this Eastern locale in Moscow’s food scene. Considering the quality, the Georgian delicacies here are some of the best value in the whole of the city.
For those seeking to gain a taste of the best of what Russia can offer, the Metropol Hotel is the prime choice. The combination of traditional Russian recipes, exceptionally fresh ingredients, and the master expertise of the chefs here is certainly a winning one and has earned the restaurant a great deal of prestige in Moscow’s dining scene. Delicacies such as black caviar and Kamchatka crab will ensure that this foray into Russian cuisine will be a memorable one. Attentive staff ensure impeccable service and that every aspect of the experience here truly does match up to the standards of fine-dining. The restaurant’s location, near the Kremlin and a stone’s throw from the Bolshoi Theater, make it a wonderfully central spot.
The lavish and dazzling bright interiors of Grand Café Dr. Zhivago aim to take diners on an aesthetic and gastronomic journey back to Soviet Russia. The vivid, bold colors and shapes of the decor are inspired by revolutionary banners and posters and paintings by famous Soviet artists adorn the walls. On the menu, traditional Russian favorites are transformed by fascinating, modern twists to create truly innovative dishes. The restaurant was opened by Alexander Rapoport who won Russian GQ magazine‘s title of Restaurateur of 2014. Dishes such as pryanik (traditional Russian gingerbread), flavored ice cream and crayfish tail cabbage rolls reflect the restaurant’s creative style.
The rich, meat-heavy quality of Russian cuisine has often caused problems for those seeking vegetarian or lighter options among the nation’s restaurants. But, fear not, Avocado is looking to shake things up in Russia’s food scene by providing fresh, light, and meat-free meals in the heart of the city. The success of the original cafe led to Avocado’s expansion and the creation of one more restaurant just a few steps from Red Square and the Moscow Kremlin. The menu is a fusion of world cuisines.
The favored choice of the elite of Moscow’s population, rub shoulders with businessmen and famous Russian icons at this glamorous temple of Russian cuisine. Deriving its name from the famous Russian playwright, this superb restaurant strives to celebrate all things Russian. Authenticity simply bursts from each mouthful. Café Chekhov’s combination of plush interiors and centuries old recipes give the restaurant the feel of both gourmet dining and a cozy Russian grandmother’s kitchen. For the true Russian experience, opt for the borscht (beetroot soup) to start, then the salad ‘Olivier’ with salmon and red caviar, followed by melt-in-your-mouth beef Stroganoff.