Prague by Graham Drummond
Karpathos | Ascension Island | Venice | Disneyland Paris | Faroe Islands | Umbria | India | Prague | Zakynthos
Considered by many to be one of the most beautiful destinations in Europe, the capital city of the Czech Republic boasts great sights and an interesting history. Invaded by Hitler’s armed forces Prague was also bombed during World War II by the U.S. Air Force, who managed to get it confused with their real target – the German city of Dresden! Nowadays tourists flock from all over the world to see the stunning architecture, the Charles Bridge and the famous Astronomical Clock.
If you like pretzels you’re in luck! A lot of pubs, restaurants and cafes place a rack of large pretzels on each table to tempt the visitor into a snack. Best of all, you get charged per pretzel rather than having to pay for all of them, which is ideal if you don’t want to be stuffed.
After watching the Czechs storm to victory we headed off in search of food. None of my friends are vegetarian, but all of them understand that I am and were more than happy to find somewhere that suited all of us. We found a very untraditional restaurant called Buffalo Bills, located just off the main tourist location of Wenceslas Square. Serving Tex-Mex food, there were many vegetarian options to choose from. In the end I went for a spinach and mushroom quesadilla with rice and Mexican beans, which turned out to be very fresh and tasty.
Although the first night of food proved a success, those searching for a veggie paradise will not find it in Prague. While there is usually a separate heading for vegetarian options on most menus, the food itself tends to be slightly bland and often unimaginative. Our second night in the city saw us visiting a much more traditional Czech restaurant. From the vegetarian section, I went with a four cheese tortellini. While not being the most creative veggie cuisine, it was definitely competent food that any vegetarian would be happy, though not thrilled, to eat.
Looking for something genuinely authentic to eat in Prague (i.e. not Italian or Mexican cuisine), our search lead us to a brightly-lit fast food stand in the hustle and bustle of Wenceslas Square late one night. I wanted to try something that Czechoslovakians or Prague residents would themselves eat, and was presented the answer in the form of ‘Menu 2’ on the stand – Fried Cheese! Almost definitely equating to -9 of your recommended 5-a-day, Prague’s speciality is mild cheese which is fried and covered in breadcrumbs, usually presented in a burger bun with ketchup or mayonnaise. Stodgy, fattening and probably life-threatening if consumed daily, fried cheese is actually a fairly enjoyable fast food snack provided you only eat it every once in a while.
You may not be bowled over by mouth-watering food or spoilt for choice in Prague, but it is an easy place to enjoy decent vegetarian food if you know where to go.