Hungary Food & Dining

A good range of restaurants is available, from inexpensive self-service establishments to fine dining eateries. Patisseries (cukrászda), serving cakes and pastries, and coffee shops (kavenas) are also popular. Gerbeaud’s is Budapest’s most famous coffee-house.

Things to know: There are no licensing hours. Minors are allowed to go into bars but will not be served alcohol.

National specialties:
Hungary Food & DiningHalászlé (a spicy soup made with freshwater fish and paprika).
• Gulyás (Hungarian goulash

is a hearty beef, capsicum and paprika soup; Western goulash is called pörkölt or tokány).
Gundel palacsinta (pancake served with walnuts, raisins, lemon rind, chocolate sauce and rum).
Paprikás csirke (paprika chicken).
Kolbasz (sausage spiced with paprika).

National drinks:

• Tokaji (strong dessert wine).
• Bull’s Blood (strong red wine).
Pálinka (brandy) comes in barrack (apricot), szliva (plum) or cseresznye (cherry) flavor.
• Beer.
Unicum (herb liqueur).

Legal drinking age: 18.

Tipping: 10 to 15% is expected in restaurants, bars, clubs, taxis and so on. Don’t leave the money on the table; tell the waiter or waitress the amount you wish to pay, including the tip.




Hungary Food & DiningBudapest is the country’s main nightlife center with myriad clubs,bars, discos and casinos. It is also home to the magnificent Budapest Opera House , which stages regular performances. Although on a smaller scale, the nightlife in larger cities and towns like Debrecen and Szeged is also lively and during the summer months the popular Lake Balaton resort of Siófok has a buzzing nightlife. Cinemas in major towns show many films in their original language with Hungarian subtitles. Western Hungary in particular has a lot of very good wine cellars that open late.

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