Centuries of influences coming from various cultures have created a unique blend of culinary cosmopolitism and local tradition specific to Belgrade. Amidst all this diversity, Serbia’s capital has also developed gastronomy flavours, habits and rituals not found anywhere else. The rich cuisine will inspire you to taste something new every time.
National cuisine and the city’s bohemian spirit are preserved from oblivion at the coffee houses in the Skadarlija district, a cosy old cobbled street. This was once the centre of urban life, where many illustrious Belgraders used to revel and party until the wee hours of the morning. Today, a walk along this street is like a time machine that will transport you back to those bohemian times.
Belgrade’s culinary offering is enriched by the Zemun Quay and the New Belgrade Quay. These charming promenades with centuries of fishing tradition have developed their own fish delicacies that are well worth a trip to the restaurants on the banks of the Danube.
Those with a sweet tooth should definitely taste “Moskva Šnit”, a genuine Belgrade cake originally created at the famous Moskva Hotel, which can now be ordered at virtually all restaurants in the capital.
An unavoidable daily ritual in Belgrade is coffee-drinking. Wherever you go, at any time of the day, you will see hospitality establishments full of people. When the weather is nice, you can sit at one of the many café gardens and sip at your coffee cup outdoors, as you watch the busy urban life go on at its hectic pace all around you. Belgraders drink a cup of coffee to start the day in the morning, to finish their lunch, in meetings with friends and business partners… From the unique texture of the traditional home-brewed coffee to various coffee-based beverages brought here from all over the world, this warm drink is a perfect way to round off your every day.
Apart from the coffee-drinking ritual, enjoying wine and rakija, a local fruit brandy, is also one of the city’s traditions. As Belgrade is one of the few capital cities in the world with its own wine region, here you can sample genuine locally-produced wines from the Serbian capital, made with grapes grown on the banks of the Danube and the slopes of Kosmaj and Avala mountains.
The most popular among the many varieties of rakija are šljivovica (plum brandy) and kajsijevača (apricot brandy), dunjevača (quince brandy), which visitors to the Serbian capital buy both for their own enjoyment and as a gift for their friends.