Vojvodina is a very different Serbia to the one found south of Belgrade, and this is clear from what goes in the mouth as much as what comes out of it. Being the biggest city in the province, Novi Sad has the best selection of restaurants around, and these are the best of those best.
Project 72 Wine & Deli
Deli, Restaurant, Contemporary, Seafood, $$$
We should start by saying that Project 72 is far from the cheapest place in the city, but the quality more than matches the price. This is the classiest spot in Novi Sad, a place to scrub up for, and one that is packed out all week long. The food is the best in the city, a fact that is accepted by all and sundry, and the atmosphere is equal parts invigorating and intimate. If you’re looking to splash the cash on fantastic food, look no further.
Fish & Zeleniš
Deli, Restaurant, Seafood, Mediterranean, $$$
Fish and Zeleniš couldn’t be more different to Project 72 when it comes to outlook and aim, but this adorable little restaurant in the city centre has all of the personality in the world, not to mention fantastic fare. As the name implies, this is a spot for those who love fish and greens, proof if proof need be of Novi Sad’s forward-thinking population. Fish and Zeleniš is the perfect mix of fine dining and down to earth homeliness, and we don’t throw around the ‘P’ word too often.
Restaurant, BBQ, Kebab, Mediterranean, Contemporary, $$$
Situated within the majestic Petrovaradin Fortress
, Terasa likely walks away with the prize for ‘Most Romantic Restaurant in Novi Sad’. How could it not? The Danube stretches out in front of the garden, affording arresting vistas towards the city centre and the mighty river. The food holds up its end of the bargain well enough, Domestic cuisine dominates the menu, but this is as much about the setting as it is the steaks.
Cafe, Hotel Restaurant, Restaurant, Mediterranean, Contemporary, BBQ, $$$
The name never fails to make us chuckle, although we aren’t entirely sure why. The English version would be ‘Cafe Big’, The name makes sense when you realise that it is a part of the hotel of the same name, but the restaurant is worth a visit whether or not you are bedding down above it. Carnivores and herbivores are both catered for, and it also happens to be dog-friendly. Three ticks from us.
Deli, Restaurant, BBQ, American, $$$
A little bit of simplicity is always encouraged, and it doesn’t get much simpler than the delightful burgers of Novi Sad’s premier American diner. The burgers deserve extra praise, and there are plenty of options for those looking for a new meat-and-bun combo. You don’t have to get the meat either, so vegetarians fear not. We’ll never say no to excellent onion rings either. There isn’t much space, but there’s plenty of taste
Restaurant, Contemporary, Mediterranean, BBQ, $$$
Do you prefer to eat your food in a romantic courtyard or in a gracefully constructed interior? Both options are on the table (take that as a joke if you so desire) at Zak, another classy option in the Serbian Athens. Everything from gourmet cuisine to burgers are available, in a fine spot that caters to as wide a range of people as possible. The cellar is definitely worth a visit too.
Pizzaria, Restaurant, Italian, $$$
We’d be remiss to talk about restaurants without mentioning at least one pizzeria, and Savoca gets the nod in Novi Sad. The usual homely interior promises good things, and good things are soon to arrive in the shape of crispy pizzas and a wide range of available toppings. Plenty of other Italian dishes are available, but you’re going for the pizza.
Restaurant, BBQ, Contemporary, $$$
Another restaurant in Petrovaradin with a magical view, Akva Doria is a hugely popular restaurant that divides opinion. Locals love it, as much for the undeniably Serbian atmosphere as the excellent food. Those unfamiliar with Serbian culture might find it all a bit too much, but take our advice and simply sit back and enjoy. The fish here is particularly fantastic.
Restaurant, Deli, Cafe, Contemporary, Vegetarian, $$$
Kombinat’s MO is ‘food made with care’, and it is difficult to argue with that statement. The focus is on service and fresh ingredients, all in a relaxed environment that almost resembles the idyllic student atmosphere. There is plenty of natural light too, which simply adds to the freshness of this modern joint. Sandwiches, salads, soups and more, Kombinat is a breath of fresh air on the Serbian gastronomy circuit.
Petrus Caffe Gallery Bar
Cafe, Restaurant, Contemporary, $$$
Petrus may well be the fanciest place in town, but this shouldn’t be taken as a negative. There is more than enough curiousness about the art on the walls to dispel any fears of exclusivity, and that is clear enough from the varied clientele that congregate around the central bar.