If you love trying local dishes when you travel, then you can’t miss the opportunity to eat and drink your way through Budapest on this walking food tour.
When you visit a new place, what is one of the first things you want to do? Try the local cuisine, of course! Every country has a famous dish that every visitor should try and Hungary is no exception. We heard that Budapest had phenomenal food, but we weren’t sure where exactly to start our food journey. Sure, we wanted to sample the Goulash and Lesco, but these are common dishes that can be found anywhere; it’s like looking for pizza in Italy! We wanted to make sure that we got on the foodie track and experience the food in Budapest the way the locals do.
That’s when we heard about Taste of Hungary and their Budapest Dinner Walk, conducted by a food-specialized local guide who guaranteed to take us to “locals only” spots. Taking an organized tour is not typically how we discover new things while traveling, but we were sold by the promise of a unique experience, the ability to learn about Hungarian wines and that we would be trying things, we couldn't even pronounce.
What to Expect
We met our tour guide and the rest of our tour group at a charming and cozy wine bar called the Tasting Table, in the 7th district. Most of the tour runs through this area so you can expect a 10-15 minute walk between venues. We were fortunate enough to have only one other couple in our group, so it felt much more personal and intimate.
Our evening started by tasting some Hungarian wines and a board of carefully selected local cheeses and meats. It was the perfect combination of fare and atmosphere to break the ice and get to know the other couple and our guide. While chatting with our guide I mentioned my quest to find the best Langos, and she declared she would take us to a nearby place known for the dish. So, don’t be shy to ask your guide if there’s something you’d like to seek out!
From our meeting point we moved on to the Jewish Corner where we wet our appetite with matzo ball soup. The ambiance was friendly and warm and we took in all the quirky décor as we sipped the broth and nibbled on the tasty dumplings. After a short stroll we came to Macesz Bistro where we indulged in Ludaskasa, a rich entrée of goose thigh and liver and vegetable risotto. Truly divine!
Next up was a small contemporary cocktail bar, serving up some unique and trendy mixes. Here we tried several digestif liqueurs; Unicum, a traditional Hungarian liqueur made with a secret formula of over 40 herbs and Palinka, a fruit brandy dating back to the middle ages. Rich in flavor and history, they were like nothing we’d ever tasted before.
After the meal, our guide brought us to the “ruin bars”, an underground bar scene inconspicuously constructed in abandoned buildings in the pre World War II Jewish neighborhood. From the outside these bars are disguised as ordinary and quiet house fronts, but once you step through the door you will be immersed in a bustling and lively atmosphere.
These bars are a relatively new phenomenon (the first one being constructed just 10 years ago but the buildings are ruins filled with history); however they are among the most hip nightlife spots in all of Budapest due to their funky and fun vibes. Definitely worth a visit! After we’d had our fill of the ruin bars, we wandered to a nearby café serving up decadent desserts and specialty coffees.
We finished the tour feeling full and satisfied on an evening well spent with great food, lovely company and fascinating culture. If you are looking to try dishes you’ve never heard of (or can even pronounce) this is the perfect way to spend an evening, expand your palate and meet some interesting people. Prepare yourself for a total cultural immersion!
About Taste of Hungary
Taste of Hungary is an organization that operates various food and wine tours throughout the city. Their philosophy is based on research and authenticity; they want to show you how the locals eat, what they eat, and why. With groups no larger than six people, you will get the full focus and attention of your expertly trained local guide.
Tours include (but not limited to) a Vegetarian Tour, Sweet and Coffee House Walk, Ruin Bar Walk and several wine tasting tours to choose from.We took the Budapest Dinner walk, which was priced at $110 USD for small group tour of no more than six people. This included everything from our drinks, our entrees and the snacks in between. The tour is from 5pm-9pm and will start and end in a central location in the city. The food and drink portions are very generous, so no need to bring snacks or eat before! If you want to arrange a group tour of more than six or a private tour, you can contact them to make arrangements.
Fore more information about this food tour, visit the below website: