Prague is one of the most culturally vibrant cities in Central Europe. It has many famous cultural attractions & is home to influential figures like Fans Kafka and Antonín Dvořák.
Next week, we will all be reuniting under the roof of the Diplomat hotel for another edition of the European Summit. If you’re not fired up yet, here is an overview of unmissable delights you’ll have to check out and taste while you’re here.
One cannot talk about Czech culture without mentioning its wide array of delicious (and quite uncommon) dishes and drinks! Here are our favorites:
- Svickova: Beef sirloin pierced with bits of speck, smothered in a creamy vegetable sauce (carrots, celery, turnip). Commonly, whip cream, cranberry jam and a slice of lemon will be added on top of the meat. Served with knedliky (see below).
- The Czech dumpling (aka Knedlik): Traditional side dish to accompany hearty meals, such as Svickova and Goulash. To many of you, it will seem like no more than steamed bread, but you can’t visit the Czech Republic without giving it a taste. You’ll find different variations of the knedlik on menus, savory and sweet.
- Goulash: The Czech version is a thicker version of the traditional Eastern European stew. Sometimes you’ll find it served with the knedliky, other times inside a cumin-flavored bread. A safe bet, not matter where you eat.
- Pork Knee (“Koleno”): Like to finish a meal full and satisfied? Then order yourself a comically oversized pieces of pork knee. A mix of fall-off-the-bone tender pork, crispy skin, and a layer melting fat underneath it. The meat is usually marinated in dark beer and herbs, roasted, and then served bone-in with a serrated knife.
- Utopenec: Your beer’s best friend. Literally means the “the drowned man”. Utopenec is a dish composed of sausages served onions in sweet and sour marinade. Served cold.
- Kulajda: Winter like summer, Czechs love starting their meals with a soup. And if there is one traditional Czech soup, it is Kulajda, a creamy potato soup with mushrooms, dill, vinegar with a poached in it.
- Trdelnik: Are you more a sweet tooth? Trdelníks are sold in kiosks all over the old town of Prague. Made of rolled yeast dough, they are then brushed with butter and rolled around in a cinnamon-sugar and nut mixture before being roasted. Not sweet enough? Order it filled with Nutella or ice-cream, that should do the trick.
If you leave Prague without trying the local Czech alcohols, it’s like you’ve never been here…
- Beherovka: This sweet herbal liqueur from Karlovy Vary with a secret recipe of 22 herbs can be consumed straight up in a shot, as the locals do, or with tonic water, ice, and a slice of lemon. Available almost everywhere.
- Slivovica: This strong plum brandy is perhaps the most traditional drink in the Czech Republic – consumed by the shot to commemorate, well, just about anything. “R. Jelínek” is the most popular brand, available all over town – as well as at the airport.
- Moravian wines: Cheap and succulent. They’re known for offering a nice blend of spicy and fruity notes.
- Pilsner: The #1 Czech beer. Pilsner is made by pale malts and soft water. It has a very distinct “hoppy” taste. Want to get the full flavor? Order it tankova, which means directly form the tank (only available in certain pubs in town).
Best Bars & Pubs
The City provides with a wide range of selection for bars & pubs to whether you’re looking to seal a business deal or simply chill out after a frenetic day.
- U Kroka: Best Czech restaurant in Prague from our point of view. This restaurant is intimate, charming, and serves the best pork knee in town, hands down!
- U Medvidku: We love it for the quality of its beer. Located near the river in the heart of Prague’s New Town, U Medvidku is a traditional Czech cantine where you can order a bottle of the world’s strongest beer (XBEER-33), order a tankova Budweiser (brewed on site), and even brew your own beer.
- Vzorkovna: For an authentic underground experience, head over to Vzorkovna. This is by far the best bar in Prague. It is a subversive labyrinth with compound rooms. At the door, a threatening bouncer welcomes you from behind what looks like prison bars. Live music, food and good drinks! If you’re visiting Prague, this is definitely a MUST.
- Mlejnice: Best goulash in bread we’ve ever tasted! 2 locations in the center.
Our Favorite Clubs and Lounges
Want to throw your own counter-party during the conference? Here are some places where you could go:
- Lucerna: we love their 80s & 90s parties every Friday and Saturday. A giant screen projects the music videos of the songs that unite the young and the old in a time bubble marked by nostalgia and groovy beats.
- Cross Club: Prague’s best club by far. Drum’n’bass, dubstep, techno and house are on the DJ’s playlist. The decoration is sumptuous; everything is made out of metal and everything is moving. Apart from two music stages there are many smaller or bigger rooms where you can enjoy your beer, chat with friends or play foosball .
- Groove Bar: Top notch lounge cocktail bar. Outstanding cocktails, sick music and beautiful crowd! We love to start our nights there for it is the perfect build-up to a good night out.
- Roxy: Located in the town center, it is the largest nightclub in Prague. Over the years, this club has attracted some of the most notorious local and international DJ’s and bands.
Czech words to know when visiting Prague
Although you’ll have no trouble getting your way around in English in Prague, knowing a few Czech words can dramatically improve the quality of service you get at restaurants and pubs… Here are a few to get you started:
>> Hi: Ahoj (informal)
>> Hello: Dobrý den – formal
>> Thank you: Děkuji
>> Please: Prosím
>> Good-bye: Na shledanou
>> A beer, please: Pivo, prosim!
>> Do you speak English? Mluvite anglicky?
>> I don’t speak Czech: Ne mluwim Cesky.
>> The bill, please: ucet, prosim.
>> Where is… : Kde je…
Are we missing anything? Our team is here to help you feel at home during The European Summit. just ask!