I was fortunate to learn about a traditional Czech restaurant just on the outskirts of Prague from friends who had been there a few times; the owner even seemed to recognize him as we walked in. Despite the fact that the restaurant is not a haunt for tourists (am pretty sure we were the only ones), some of the room designs had the wild west written all over them. Zlaty Dul is located on Plzenska 173, Kavalirka in Prague’s 5th district, so a bit of a distance from the center of town. (well worth the drive or cab ride).
The building is a former gold mine, the first gold mine in Prague in fact, each room feeling like a well-decorated stylish cave, with its own unique character. Take a look at some of the shots I took on my iPhone.
And while you’re hanging out in this crazy, creative, eclectic building set on two floors (the lower half feeling more like a cave or a dungeon – a funky one that is), the menu doesn’t disappoint. The wait staff don’t know a helluva lot of English so a strong recommendation if you have an iPhone is to download the Czech English translator (I think it’s around 2.99) but well worth it when you’re stuck in a bind and need to get across that you’re lactose tolerant, allergic to nuts or want the best beer on the menu.
The prices were also very reasonable, much closer to the cost of a meal you’d expect to pay in Prague, which is less than half of what you’ll be presented in the city center. For $2-$3 (at a 15.5 exchange), you can have a scrumptious soup to start (wild mushroom with sour cream, strong garlic with meat, vegetables and nobles or spicy tomato served with cream and jalapenos).
Other recommendations on their starter/appetizer list include the beef carpaccio with basil oil and parma cheese, salmon tartar served with french mustard (I told them to skip that part), sour cream and French toast, the Chicken liver served with garlic and mushrooms (yum yum) and a traditional sausage delicacy called kosirsky.
They also had a homemade pickled brie which didn’t sound appealing to me, but if you are in love with brie, pickled or not, it might be an interesting choice.
We Blog the World recommendation: we definitely give it a thumbs up but know that you’re not going to get 5 star presentation or taste quality. Presentation is okay and food is average (not over the moon), but its good enough and the ambiance, candles, art, crazy floors all make up for what the food is missing. After all, how often do you get to dine in an old gold mine in Eastern Europe
Zlaty Dul has local charm and each room is so unique and precious that its worth going back a second time if you’re in Prague long enough to experience the place with new eyes in a completely different style room.