Friday, June 15, 2012

Shish Kebab Palace, Bier Gasse, and Timur's

A new friend and I meandered through Gorky Park last week- it was actually an attempt to use the cable carts to cross over to the Sarzhin Ravine but the carts were closed again. They'd even disassembled part of the overhead track so it may be a while before that attraction is up and running again. We turned back in search of a snack, a search that led us to the Shish Kebab Palace.

The summer patio is now open, so it was possible to enjoy the breeze and look out into the remodeled section of the park. It was also nice to talk with this new friend, a transplant from Texas, while we waited for our order to arrive. I'd gambled again on a Caesar salad and this time the gamble paid off: the most authentic Caesar salad I've found here so far! Look at that- REAL lettuce!

Last weekend we visited Bier Gasse at the invitation of one of my students. Bier Gasse is on the third floor of the Daffy mall and advertises itself as a немецкий пивной ресторан, or German beer restaurant.

We reserved a long table near the kitchen. A fortuitous event, because the rest of the place was filled with local soccer fans yelling at the TVs.

I like this place more than Stargorod. The others said the beer was good and I can vouch for the food here. While the offerings are similar, there's more variety on the menu than you'll find at Stargorod. D had a grilled veggie platter, I had a tasty chicken noodle soup with quail eggs, and the others split a big plate of sausages and potatoes. **2013 update: Bier Gasse is no longer open. The space has been turned into another restaurant called "Pasta Project"**

Going further back in time...... After finding out that Timur had never seen the Lord of the Rings trilogy, D decided to take matters into his own hands. I can't say that we even made it through the entire first movie, but we had a lot of fun just hanging out at their place!

Yulia gave me this tasty ice cream for dessert and stunned me by using a cheese grater to shave off pieces of a chocolate bar as a topping. That revolutionized my world- I do that trick all the time now!

Speaking of ice cream, we're eating lots of it now. And spending half the day taking cold baths. A bathtub full of cold water sounds like torture.... until you're living in a giant oven. In that case a cold bath is considered a delightful afternoon treat called "the frog pond". The only other place I remember being this hot is Nicaragua. Oh, and Crimea 2007. But in those cases the Pacific Ocean/Black Sea was there to save the day. Anyways, as I understand it, hot water soon may not even be an option. A former student was kind enough to email the Kharkov hot water outage schedule for the summer. The schedule says that our neighborhood will have no hot water for about 25 days next month, yikes. Better get used to the cold water now!

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