Out of the many eating/drinking establishments I’ve frequented in Belgrade so far, these are a few of my personal favorites:
Bookshop and Tearoom Apropo Cara Lazara 10
Off the main pedestrian zone, but still close to the action, this is an adorable nonsmoking bookshop and tearoom behind Knez Mihailova. It is a quiet place with an upper floor for people to sit and drink their tea and read or study. This place feels old, but cozy, not creepy, which is a hard balancing act to master. This has become my favorite place to study and write in Belgrade. They have an extensive offering of exotic teas and free wifi.
Mama’s biscuit House – Strahinica Bana 72
This is a subground level bar with great ambiance. The interior is mostly red, and the people watching is great since it’s on a major street for upscale bars, Strahinica Bana. The name is misleading, its actually quite modern, chic, and enticing actually. I didn’t see any biscuits there, but there are a lot of delicious looking appetizers and a full bar menu.
Cafe Harizma – Njegoseva 5
This is a great outdoor cafe near Slavija, which makes it a great place for meeting people in the city. It’s opposite a modern Yugoslavian Theater with glass walls. Near the cafe, there are a few street vendors selling jewelry and art.
Vesele Domacice – Just next to Cafe Harizma
Though something in me silently protests to the name “The Happy Housewife”, This is actually a really charming, modern, cafe, and is always buzzing with both guys and girls. And none of them are soccer moms.
The Red Room – Somewhere on Simina Street near the Faculty of Law
This is a punk, grunge, bar with a good DJ who takes requests. A young, hip, group and cheap drinks make this place worth visiting.
The Tube – In Old Town, not sure the exact address
This underground technoclub is a must see I think. It was formerly a nuclear fall out shelter and now is home to all night techno music and hundreds of angst ridden young Serbs, dancing like mad. The inside is a maze of hallways and hidden enclaves, its dark, like a cave with tunnels carved through it all, and several areas open up to a larger cavernous dance area. The perimeter inside is lined with rows of bare lightbulbs.
Supe i Salata
This is probably the only healthy lunch place I’ve seen in all of Serbia so far. And the owner agrees, “It’s a new concept in Belgrade, the only one of its kind” Serving up a variety of only homemade soup, fresh salad, and crostini. This was really a relief from the endless cold pizza slices, the greasy burek, and the bacteria ridden pleskavica shops. Finally! A lighter, healthier, alternative in Belgrade. For Belgrade’s standards, its expensive, but for US standards, its pretty reasonable. Supposedly another Supe i Salata location just opened up near Slavia as well.
These next 3 are surprisingly good for being so obvious.
Znak Pitanje “?” Kralje Petra 6
Like I said, you don’t expect this place to be that great, seeing as though many tourists have heard of it, however it was quite good and I would go again. I got the meat goulash and the Jelen beer, which is the most common domestic beer, and it’s quite bad actually. If you order beer, get it in a bottle rather than draft here, it will be much colder. This restaurant/bar claims to be the oldest restaurant in Serbia. It’s located near a Church, and at one point was called “Bar near the Church”. The Church leaders demanded the owner remove the sign at once, and he ended up replacing it with a question mark, which still remains today. Go for the atmosphere, not the food, and you’ll enjoy it.
Plato Across the street from Studenski Trg, attached to the side of Knez Mihailova
This place is such a landmark, you really don’t expect it to be great, but it is!! It’s a 3 level place, the top floor is a cafe/restaurant, the ground floor a bookshop, and the basement a club. The cafe has excellent views of the streets below and great people watching! I especially like to sit in the big red armchair by the corner. In the evenings they sometimes have live music. The bookshop is fantastic, like almost all bookshops in Belgrade, and the basement club is really unique. In the basement the walls are covered in shelves and shelves of books, which contrast with the industrial style, metal walkways and staircases. You have to see this place to appreciate it. Very cool.
SnezanaThis modern restaurant probably caters to the international crowd with a duplicate English menu and a few tex mex dishes. However, the food is great, reasonably priced, the place is clean, modern, close to Kalamegdan on Knez Mihailova, and they have free wifi.