Legendary late night pub in boho Montpelier. The DJs spin reggae, there's a good selection of rum behind the bar and Jamaican patties for the peckish. If you're lucky you'll find landlord Dutty Ken in a cooking mood and be treated to some of his finest curried goat. Live music every Sunday that ranges from Gypsy Jazz to Latin, Funk and Dub.
33 Brook Road, Montpelier
Almost all of my expat friends say that the tree will be the first choice if they want to have some tasty pizza. Also they have a impressive collection of Belgian beers.
43 Bei Sanlitun Nan,Chaoyang district (100 metres West of Sanlitun North Bar street, Yo Yi Youth Hostel, behind Poachers Inn)
Tel: 010 6415 1954
Prohibicja is ideally placed on Podwale not far from the Royal Castle and Old Town.
In keeping with its name the restaurant has a mock up of a still above the bar downstairs and the white washed walls are pock marked with fake bullet holes. A suitably theatrical design for somewhere that is owned by four Polish actors.
The menu has both Polish and American influences - including dishes such as Spare Ribs with French Fries and Pike/Perch with Mashed Potatoes, Spinach and Caper Sauce - the food is simple but well cooked and tasty, the service excellent, friendly and efficient.
Nestling in the old banking district is this jewel in the crown of the Bristol clubbing scene. Native plays host to the best of local and international Djs with an increasing number of live gigs. Intimacy is the watchword. Saturdays is 'Western Soul.' With a 4am licence and Red Stripe on tap, it's a sweaty evening given over to local turntablists such as Boca45 and The Leisure Allstars.
15 Small Street BS1 1DE
Adjacent to St. Nicholas Market The Rummer has recently been painstakingly restored by two brothers. It's laid-back and a complete antidote to the bland commercialism of many of the city centre chain bars. There's an amazing selection of spirits, including Nicaraguan Flor de Caña rum, a late licence on weekends and an open fire during winter.
All Saints Lane BS1 1JH
Les Trois Brasseurs is a wonderful brew-pub with all the shiny copper brewing paraphenalia in situ. The interior is enormous as is the warm North American welcome. Lots of bar-stools lots of tables and chairs, good music and the custromers are chatty, not exhibiting the normal big city paranoia.
Apparently there are three such Trois Brasseurs so they are not exactly a chain. I discovered the bar in the depths of last winter, minus 20°. Talk about coming in from the cold! Anyway there were their own three draught beers on offer blonde-bitter, brune-mild and rousse-amber. I would have tasted the lot a few times each but my better half put the brakes on.
Women would be at ease on their own there as it is very cosmopolitan quite different than the average bloke's tavern.
Be warned the stools and seats are very comfortable...it is very hard to leave especially in January.
The old town. Just ask where.
A long time mainstay of the city's Polish community. This is a no frills atmospheric live music venue where the zubrowka & apple juice and Zywiec keeps flowing. The Polish '82 World Cup team take pride of place and look down from their frame above the bar.
50 St. Pauls Road, Clifton
There's a DIY spirit down at the Cube. Their programme of film, art and music is left-field and reliably on the money. On sale at the bar is their own brand of homemade Cube-Cola along with 'feral' trade sweets from Iran and coffee from El Salvador. A Bristol treasure.
Dove Street South, off King Square, Stokes Croft
Head to Caffe Bar Talir, a few streets west for drinks with Dubrovnik's young and beautiful. It's an artists' hang-out and the walls are covered with pictures of rowdy nights gone by, as well as some Croatian C-listers and Goran Ivanisevic. Drinks are well priced and everyone spills outside to sit on the steep steps leading up towards the town walls.
Caffe Bar Talir prides itself on the fact it was one of three places that remained open throughout the Serbs' 1991 siege of the city and is nowhere near as commercial as the Troubadour Jazz Cafe now (sponsored by T-Mobile!)
Caffe Bar Talir - Antuninska, 00 385 20 323 293 open till 3am weekends
Smaller than my one-room apartment in St. Petersburg, Dacha is a bar-cum-club which goes a little way toward being avant garde, or at the very least, off the beaten track. Its nights of 60s music, electronica mixed with punk, and insane remixed disco pop beats the packed crowd of twenty-something party-goers dancing 'till the club closes at 6am.
Round the back of Gostiny Dvor. Metro Nevsky Prospekt, Ulitsa Dumskaya.
Tucked away in the middle of Split's old town, Cafe Nabeel is a curious but brilliant little local hangout where tourists also seem welcome. The kitchen rustles up hefty pies, best shared, and you can also fill up on toast. Late at night the cafe morphs into a lively night spot where the genial Nabeel can be seen showing off his 'bungra' dance moves - join in for a discount! Perhaps best of all is the decor - a bizarre mixture of local crafts and pieces of Star Wars Lego. An unmissable local oddity.
Head down Zadarska, off Narodni Trg central square in Split's old town.
Great food, big portions, and reasonable prices. Free internet too, although no printing facilities. Try the chocoholic fantasy on the dessert menu! Mmmmmmm.
1a Market St, opposite Fruitmarket Gallery and Waverley Station;
tel: 0131 226 9560;
If you like your hotels ultra-modern and luxiourious this is the one for you. It's ten minutes or so walk from the main shopping street (Patricks St). Beautiful rooms, nice bar, nice restaurant and friendly, efficient staff. Request river views with balcony rather than the Atrium.
Great selection of cocktails and smoothies, and not overpriced. Restaurant has a wide range of plates on offer, from 'comfort' foods such as fisherman's pie to more exotic/exciting dishes.
Probably the best value of all the George Street establishments (for those not from Edinburgh, George Street is the most upmarket bar area in Edinburgh).
113 - 115 George Street;
OK, another bar/hotel on George Street. However I think this is a little different to the others such as Le Monde. Not cheap for drinks but you have to go at least once! Staff are very friendly and not pretentious in the least. The interior of Tiger Lilly retains the basis structure of the Georgian house that it once was. Food is also good and not overpriced.
125 George Street (near Charlotte Square);
tel: 0131 225 5005;
This is a typical Edinburgh 'boozer'. If you want to see what a good Edinburgh local pub is like go to this place. There is a good quiz here on Thursday nights where anyone can take part. The banter can flow here, especially on Thursday nights.
203 Easter Road (on the corner of Iona Street); tel: 0131 554 5180;
Directions: take any bus down Leith Walk (no 7, 14 or 22) or Easter road.
Great pub on Edinburgh's Grassmarket. Can I say anymore? Well, ok, I will. Few of the pubs on the Grassmarket are worth recommending but this is definitely one. Staff are friendly and the food is good, and at very good prices. A lunch here would not put a dent in your pocket and leave plenty of cash for drink. I have recommended this pub to many folk around the world and they have not been disappointed.
74 Grassmarket, EH1 2JR;
tel: 0131 225 4851
What can I say? Appearances are deceptive. When you walk into this place you think its just a dark bar with some pool tables. OK, it is but there's more to it. It serves great food at really great prices. Menu ranges from sandwiches, salads and burgers to goulash, cous cous and lamb in flatbread with hummus. Ideal as a pit stop for anybody looking for good food at good prices.
19 Blair street, in the old town (just off Royal Mile a few doors down from the IBIS hotel, behind the Tron);
tel: 0131 220 0125
This restaurant serves high-quality authentic Italian food and has an excellent wine list. It's open seven days a week - from 8am Monday to Saturday (Sunday opens later) and has tables outside, which is good if you have a dog! They are child friendly, service is of the highest standard and staff are super friendly. It was voted new best restaurant last year by The List and the interior is stunning.
103 George Street, next to Castle Street;
tel: 0131 225 1550;
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