Vilnius Food and Drinks Redefined

Restaurant guests

Don’t get fooled by guidebooks suggesting you should go looking for potato dumplings as the utmost culinary delicacy when visiting Lithuania. Days when this country was best known for hearty potato dishes once consumed by hard working farmers are long gone. Today the capital city Vilnius is a good representation of gastronomic trends that can be spotted worldwide with new restaurants, independent coffee shops and bars opening up, that stand out with refined concepts, thought through menus and interesting interiors. Modern seasonal dishes, gourmet street food, mouth-watering desserts, locally roasted coffee or craft beers from all over the world – you can get it all here, in the country listed as one of the top 3 most attractive travel destinations in 2015.

Coffee: Taste Map

Coffee beans that Taste Map use for making coffees come straight from their own roastery, so it can’t get fresher than this. You can try one of their frequently changing single origin espressos or choose from different brew coffees prepared the way you like – Aeropressed, in Chemex of with Hario V60.

The staff here including ever smiling Ieva who runs this place are passionate about coffee and you can learn many interesting things if you are up for a chat. Curious about different styles of filter coffee or why Hario V60 is called that way? Just ask and they’ll happily explain.

Minimalistic distraction-free interior and ambient atmosphere makes this cafe a quiet oasis in the city where you can relax or do some work. If you are more of an outdoorsy type, just grab take away cup and continue on to the nearby Vingis park for a leisurely walk.

Taste Map Chemex

Taste Map bar

Taste Map Cafe

Taste Map Coffee Roasters, M.K.Čiurlionio st. 8, Vilnius, Lithuania

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Fine dining: Dublis

Restaurant and brasserie Dublis run by multiple award winning chef Deivydas Praspaliauskas is well known among local food afficionados. Previously hosted in tiny premises in central station area, now it can be found in a spacious mansion-house of 16th century noblemen family in the very heart of the old town. Local ingredients, creative interpretation and personal approach of the chef who comes to your table to tell about the dishes of his ever changing seasonal menu makes this place an institution in Vilnius food scene. Get a reservation in advance and come here for dinner to experience the best of the local cuisine.

Bread and butter

Pouring soup

Chef awards

Dublis, Trakų g. 14, Vilnius, Lithuania

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Fast food: Keulė Rūkė

As soon as rebellious food punks opened this quirky establishment with an intentional spelling mistake in the name “Pig had a smoke”, it instantly became a sensation. Queues of hungry eaters waiting for monster sized pulled pork burgers and ribs with home made bbq sauce is not an uncommon sight here. The restaurant is open only four days a week from Thursday to Sunday and food is served until the supply lasts.

Don’t expect fine dining experience here, as it’s more of an eat-and-go place, but they know their pork, so if you like to be well fed, get in early to beat the afterwork crowds and sink your teeth into the juicy meet.

Pulled pork burger

Bbq restaurant interior

Bbq ribs

Keulė rūkė, Pylimo st. 66, Vilnius, Lithuania

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Desserts: Ali Šokoladine

Ali šokoladinė is a place known for cakes and desserts. The variety of meticulously decorated pastries looking like small masterpieces might make you go weak at the knees and temporarily loose your mind not knowing what to choose. Take your time or just make a blind pick and then settle in for a sweet treat. If this would not satisfy your sugar craving, try some of their macarons that come in a few different flavours.

Ironically enough, being called “Ali chocolaterie” this place does not sell individual chocolates, but you can get your custom chocolate box assembled.

Raspberry cremeux

Macarons

Ali sokoladine interior

Ali šokoladinė, Bazilijonų st. 6, Vilnius, Lithuania

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Beer: Alaus biblioteka

Tucked away on the upper floor of the building this establishment with the name meaning “Beer Library” is a real beer lovers’ sanctuary. You can study their very own beer encyclopaedia and learn about different styles of beer. When you feel that theory needs some practical reinforcement, move on to sample some draught beers or reach out to the shelf lined up with a great variety of bottles. Ever seen Grand Cru beer? Or beer in champagne-style bottles? They have it all here, you name it. From local craft to carefully selected imported beers the content of their shelves cover a fair bit of periodic beer table, so you can sample and compare the differences to determine your favourite style.

Beer library

Beer encyclopedia

Beer library

Alaus biblioteka, Trakų st. 4, Vilnius, Lithuania

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