Food and Drink Czech Republic
It's a kitchen very influenced by its Germanic and Balkan neighbors. Rather hearty (euphemism!) And almost always accompanied by whipped cream. Religious festivals are the pretext, as everywhere else, to do more than usual feasting, with traditional dishes.
Czech cuisine remains the same in winter as in summer, and doesn't follow the seasons, except for game, of course.
- Předkrmy (appetizer): among the cold starters you will find the famous Prague ham, a white ham sometimes stuffed with whipped cream with horseradish. And also various imports, such as Russian eggs, Hungarian salami, cooked ham, caviar or smoked salmon. Without forgetting the husí játra na cibulce, goose liver with onions.
- Polévky (soups): the national soup (Česká bramborová) is made from potatoes, mushrooms and carrots. Other styles, other customs: tripe soup, cabbage and bacon soup, or, lighter, beef consomme. Another example is the garlic soup stripper.
- Breaded Českáfleur remains a bit surprising.
Very popular also, the steak tartare, inexpensive and served with a few slices of toast and a mountain of garlic ...
Adouce and knedlíky, which can be enjoyed with the family on Sundays. Some traditional dishes are more rarely served in restaurants and you will then have to push open the door of the inhabitant to inhale the aroma.
On the fish side, carp is in the spotlight; traditionally reserved for the Christmas meal, it is eaten breaded, obviously (smažený kapr), accompanied by potatoes in salad.
In southern Bohemia, we first eat a soup made from prunes, grapes and walnuts (kapr na černo) before attacking the carp. In this region, perch, from ponds, is often found on the menu of restaurants.
- Some meats, game and fish: beef, pork, veal, lamb, turkey, chicken, goose, duck, wild boar, pheasant, carp, trout. In South Bohemia and Moravia, do not miss restaurants specializing in river and pond fish.
- Knedlíky: an essential “specialty”, often served as an accompaniment (but less and less). Prepared with flour, eggs, yeast and stale bread, knedlíky (German Knödel) are cooked in water and then cut into slices. Quite invigorating, they replace bread in a way. Declined with imagination: knedlíky with potatoes, bacon and even fruit.
- Bramboráky: Potato pancakes, fries and flavored with marjoram. Other accompanying vegetables: hrášek (peas), fazole (beans), špenát (spinach), hlávkový salát (lettuce) and hranolky (French fries).
The cakes are related to their Viennese neighbors, namely sachertort (chocolate cake), jablkový závin (strudels) or koláče (fruit and poppy seed tarts).
Some of the “originals” include puffs with vanilla cream and whipped cream, coffin-shaped shortbread cookies, coconut shortbread with jam and donuts.
Another typical dessert: palačinky (sweet pancakes), filled with fresh fruit and whipped cream. The blueberry pancakes are often to die for.
A curiosity: the trdelnícky, a kind of cake dough rolled up on a wooden tube, served hot and sprinkled with chocolate, coconut, hazelnut and vanilla sugar.
If you have the opportunity to spend the Christmas holidays with a Czech family, you can't miss the cukroví. These small cakes, shortbread or mini pastries, perfume every home. Among the classics: the “beehive”, made with rum and chocolate, or the small vanilla croissant.
The beers (pivo)
"National treasure", "golden drink" ... This is how the Czechs refer to their favorite drink, brown, blond or amber ... There are over 300 kinds of beers.
In the Middle Ages, the right to brew beer was an important privilege for a city.
Beer is available everywhere: in restaurants, on terraces and in clubs or when meeting friends. It is unquestionably part of the typical hospoda atmosphere.
Customs and rules around beer
- The best beer, you will pay on average only the beer Attention, zero tolerance for drivers!
Small panorama of Czech beers
Brewed in low fermentation, the famous Pilsner de Plzeň is sold in Europe under the name Pilser Urquell. She gave her name to a type of light blonde, the pilsner.
Its big competitor, the Budweiser, is manufacturedBusch. The 2 companies were in conflict over the final attribution of the mark. The little name of the Czech is Budvar.
We can also mention the Smíchov of Staropramen in Prague, the Strarobrno, the Regent of Třeboň, the Radegast of Ostrava and the Kozel, brewed in Velké Popovice. Latest arrival and real fashion phenomenon: Velvet, a red beer brewed in Prague. Its peculiarity: the foam slowly descends to the bottom of the glass, what is called here the "avalanche" effect.
Not to mention all the beers from even more local breweries.
Please note, the indication in degrees refers to the percentage of ferments. Obviously, the more the beer ferments, the higher its alcohol content. A 5 ° fermentation beer is equivalent to 3 ° alcohol; 12 ° of fermentation correspond to 5 ° of alcohol. They are therefore weaker than German beers or Belgian Trappists.
Wines and spirits
In the land of wine tasting in the cellars of Moravia. Excellent small country wines, especially wines from Bohemia (Mělník region).
Bilá Ludmila is a good little white wine. The best whites are found in South Moravia. They are delicately fruity, especially from Znojmo and Valtice. Also try Frankovka, a fruity red.
Other enduring traditions: the dreaded Slivovice (plum alcohol), Borovička liquor and Becherovka liquor, made from plants. To be in the game, try Beton, a mixture of Becherovka and Tonic.
Finally, test the Bohemia sekt.
Nostalgia: the national drink in the days of communism is making a comeback. The Kofola, an imitation of the Atlantic, is once again very trendy in its original bottle. Advantage: it is cheaper and less sweet than its American cousin.