Ekaterinburg co-opts the polar sides of Russian life: on the one hand, you can find luxury boutiques, clubs and restaurants here, on the other, the city is authentically historic (capturing both the Soviet era and before) and has several universities, of which the UrFU alone is more than 50 000 students large! It also makes a great place to stay, as there are also many locations at decent prices. Let’s take a closer look at them and reveal some necessary tricks.
- Since the last couple of years, the Vilka-Lozhka cuisine network has been conquering the city. Nice interior, traditional, various and really tasty (tried!) Russian dishes as borshch or syrniki (cheese cakes), at very friendly prices - RUB 40 for a soup, RUB 170 for a main course – it’s a student paradise!
Fortunately, there are 2 Vilka-Lozhkas close to the university and one near your hostel, so you are not going to miss it! Moreover, the canteen has a bonus system to get back some money, you’ve spend there.
Location: Lenina 48, Lenina 38a, Belinskogo 71. Count with RUB 200-250 pro meal.
- Another close to the Uni, cosy and reasonable place to eat is Skoroed, which serves traditional Russian pancakes with various fillings. The prices are moderate – from RUB 35 for “simple” pancakes (the ones with butter only) to RUB 175 (e.g. with salmon). There are also assorted pancakes (250 gr) which may contain traditional fillings such as meat, vegetable (potato with mushrooms or onion and egg), berries, and cottage cheese.
Location: Lenina 53. Lunch with a soup, pancake and a drink – 170 roub.
- As of having a fast and cheap lunch, the best candidate is the University canteen (in the main building, and in natural-sciences building next to the hostel). Some people say, it doesn’t look so well and the taste may sometimes fail, but I wouldn’t agree, because it looks and tastes totally fine for a hungry student or professor J We can’t eat in Michelin-star places all the time! And the pastry there is really nice.
- The get to the other canteen you’ll need to cross Turgeneva street and go to the Uralskiy Rabochiy publishing house – workers there have their own stomach oasis. In this canteen they serve ordinary food like salads, solyanka soups and mince cutlets with buckwheat. The special thing about this canteen is its interior: typically Soviet with mosaic on the walls.
Location: Turgeneva 13.
SPECIAL LUNCH OFFERS
Of course, the other option you take would be special lunch offers (12 – 16:00) you may take in the closest restaurants, but then you shall be ready for spending more money:
1. Tiramisu at Turgeneva 3 is an Italian restaurant with nicely served food. At lunch time you’ll need approximately RUB 300 there. By the way, at weekends they have live music.
2. Another Italian restaurant is Pasta/Vino at Lenina 49. At lunch time you’ll need to spend there RUB 350-400. I’d recommend you to visit this place in the evening with a bigger amount of money and with the company of international and Russian friends. This place is the MUST-visit, totally worth it.
3. The Grott bar is a brewery in the Scandinavian style, but still they have delicious lunches. The only problem: they are something about RUB 480!
4. The third restaurant with the same address (they are all in so-called restaurant street on 1st floor passage of constructivist monument Dom Pechati) is Ogon.Burger.Bar. As the name suggests, the burgers will be served for you. Very hipster interior, amazing burgers and “I can once in a while afford it” prices distinguish this place. RUB 320 for a meat burger, RUB 240 – for a vegetarian one.
5. At Krasnoarmeyskaya 2, we’ll find Pelmeni-club: a restaurant with fashionable concept – it reinvents the old-known dish pelmeni (filled dumplings). You can taste pelmeni with exotic fillings such as venison, duck, and goose meat or spelt porridge! But then you’ll must pay up RUB 700 in the evening and up till RUB 300 in lunch time.
6. An alternative is Dyujina in the same building, but with the entrance from Lenin Avenue. They also have pelmeni (for example, with fish or sweet fillings) and other Russian dishes and traditional drinks – fruit-drinks called mors and spicy honey drink with herbs called sbiten (had been the hot drink made in samovars before tea came). RUB 700 in the evening and RUB 250 at lunch time (here it is from 11:30 to 16:30).
-If you would like to have a cup of coffee and a sweet pie, here we go with the nearest to the Uni coffee houses:
1. Simple Coffee at Lenina 46. A very popular and cute place. Good one for work, chat and relaxing break with couple of syirniki. Also, there is a bonus system – after 5 indoors coffees, you’ll get the sixth for free.
2. Down the Lenina Avenue, past the theatre, on Mamyina-Sibyarika 141 is Luckmousse coffee house. Nothing special, just good coffee and usual sweets, yes, and breakfasts for RUB 250.
3. The same building hides the small bakery Evropeyskiy pekar. There you can take pirozhki (filled pastry pieces) to-go. Quick, traditional, affordable at RUB 100.
4. Paul Backery on Lenina 48 has, to my opinion, fantastic appetizing pastries (only RUB 150 which is great!) and the best strawberry tea.
5. If you are done with studying Russian – visit Papa Carlo at Tolmacheva 17/Lenina 36. I’m not a coffee lunatic, but I’ve heard several times from different knowledgeable people, that it’s the best place in Ekaterinburg to have coffee – I go there occasionally and can see their barista’s training for a new coffee-maker competition. RUB 250.