There is no shortage of quirky cafes, exotic restaurants and vibrant nightlife venues in Belgrade’s ever growing food and beverage scene. One of my favourite things to do when I visit, is to endlessly stroll the streets and discover the newest unique concepts. As I love sharing my discoveries with my readers, I have decided to round up my 15 favourite unique concepts, which contribute to ever growing charm of Belgrade. Let’s begin!
I discovered this real gelateria this summer by chance while walking towards the parking garage on Obilicev Venac one evening, and its on the top of my list, because I am the ultimate gelato lover! Having just returned from 5 days of gelato paradise in Florence, it was a touch of destiny for me to discover this gem! Serving authentic seasonal fruity flavours as well as classics like chocolate, coffee and stracciatella, Con Amore “With love” transports visitors to a proper gelatiera, just like in Italy. It’s ideal location in the city centre makes it the perfect place to pick up a scoop of sunshine, or sit back and enjoy the taste of summer with a glass of Prosecco.
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- Address: Obilicev Venac 21
The word “Azbuka” means “alphabet” in Serbian, and as this cafe is located in courtyard of the Foundation of Vuk Karadzic, the man who reformed the modern Serbian language, it cannot bear a more perfect name! Entrance through a corridor filled with frescoes leads to the garden-esque cafe which utilizes elements from the past as well as country style with wooden chairs. The food and drinks options are ideal for any taste, making it an ideal place to enjoy an aperitivo while listening to live music, or watching old movies during the summer. It is an oasis of calm in the midst of the busy Belgrade downtown.
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- Address: Kralja Milana 2
Located in Belgrade’s defending fortress, Kalemegdan, overlooking the confluence of 2 mighty rivers, and a step away from Belgrade’s Zoo, Kalemegdanska Terasa “Kalemegdan Terrace” is one of the best places to visit in Belgrade. Offering an ideal collection of drinks, this terrace is one of my favourite places for an aperitivo while watching the sunset and basking in history. It gets very busy at any time of the day, but evenings are extra special as live music creates a perfect setting to admire the city lights.
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- Address: Kalemegdan Fortress
My brother introduced me to Jedno Mesto “One place” this summer during a rainy day. Located in the courtyard of 2 houses, the restaurant is nestled among shades of large trees in Cetinjska neighuorhood. A quirky concept which resembles the courtyard of the past, similar to what you would find in any Serb’s grandparents’ house – with a charming fountain, old bicycles and laundry hanging out to dry. The menu offers hearty dishes such as grilled sausages, best enjoyed with craft beer and live music.
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- Address: Cetinjska 15
Located literally in the midst of an ancient ruin and tucked away from the main road leading to Brankov Most “Branko’s bridge”, Jazz Basta “Jazz Garden” resembles an idyllic French countryside villa, filled with rustic white furniture, lavender pots and accented with greeenery. You can find anything from old sewing machine tables, to unused doors serving as tables in this venue, while light Jazz music plays in the background. The cafe is also known to play Disney music which is very popular for both locals and tourists, and their drinks menu boasts deliciously fresh lemonades!
- Address: Male Stepenice 1
Serbia is a region, rich in agriculture and homemade delicacies – and Manufaktura pays the perfect homage to this. The restaurant is located in the commercial heart of Kralja Petra Street, opposite to the National Bank, and is characteristically decorated outdoor by red umbrellas. Inside, the decor, menu and uniforms of the staff all resemble an old factory, which add to the concept’s essence. In the winter, the floors are even filled with wind dust to add a unique touch 🙂 The food is delicious offering Serbian delicacies based on the seasons as they use the freshest products from different regions. Visitors can also purchase Serbian made products such as jams made using traditional recipes, flour, different types of traditional cured meats, cheese, and more!
- Address: Krajla Petra 13 – 15
“Dolce” in Italian means “sweet”, and stepping into this charming cafe, is like stepping into a sweet shop. The decor reflects Baroque accents, while glass cabinets and that sweet aroma welcome visitors from the moment they open the doors. The cafe offers a rather large range of cupcakes (double decker ones), macaroons and beautifully decorated cakes, as well as an extensive range of drinks. This is one of the most beautiful, and sweetest cafes in Belgrade, and well worth stepping into this little fairytale.
- Address: Krunska 84
This cute bookstore, with an ideal location in the city centre, holds a nice collection of books, amazing Japanese tea, and three patron furry friends. It’s a cozy place to spend countless hours visiting different lands, enjoying a cup of delicious tea, and snuggling with a furry feline, while time slows down.
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- Address: Cara Lazara 10
“Knedla” or “knoedl” translates to “dumpling” and in Serbia, we take these very seriously. We first taste them in our grandma’s homemade traditional soup from a young age, and then in our aunt’s traditional plum dessert. Ferdinand Knedle is located a few streets away from the city centre, with beautiful city chic interiors, making it the perfect place to escape the summer heat. It’s menu offers a unique variety of savoury “knedle” like 4 cheese, mushrooms and chili, and an even more delectable variety of sweet “knedle” such as chocolate & orange, raspberry & Oreo, and Nutella.
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- Address: Gavrila Principa 58
CANTINA DE FRIDA
Located on the chic new Beton Hala promenade, the restaurant’s location could not be more ideal, overlooking the Sava river. Dedicated to the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, who encouraged people to look at life from different perspectives, the restaurant’s interiors and ambiance reflect eccentric and slightly peculiar elements of design. Blasts of vibrant coloured furniture fill the restaurant, paired with an equally colourful tapas and drinks menu. Make sure to check out the bathroom, it’s too pretty to use!
- Address: Karadjordjeva 2-4, Beton Hala
This one will be difficult to pronounce for non-Serbian speakers so try this out “blah-zhnah-va-tz” … ok that was more difficult to spell than pronounce! This bizzare cafe is located in one of Belgrade’s oldest neighborhoods, Dorcol, in a very subtle way, so subtle that my friend and I couldn’t figure out if it was someone’s junk yard, or a real cafe. Filled with antique items from older generations and lots of posters, it’s a great place to enjoy a refreshment when visiting Dorcol area, as it offers a vibrant atmosphere in the midst of a calm neighborhood.
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- Address: Kneginje Ljubice 18, Dorcol
I first visited this cafe with my god-brother many years ago, and fell in love with it’s charms from day 1. Nestled in an old courtyard along the busy Kralja Petra street, Smokvica “little fig” offers a delicious menu, perfect for a quick lunch break, or even better, for dinner with live entertainment. Surrounded by fig trees and covered with fairy lights, the restaurant resembles something out of a fairytale in the evening.
- Address: Kralja Petra 56
This interesting concept is located on the beautiful Zemun promenade overlooking the Danube river. The design and overall decor of this venue is a combination of bold, contrasting masculine, and elegant female elements. Visitors can purchase some nice crafty gifts, while enjoying an extensive menu featuring 50 types of craft beers, fresh seafood, and homemade pastries and ice cream. Music is a strong element too, during the day time, visitors can enjoy classical tunes, while Belgrade’s top DJ’s transform the evenings into a dance floor.
- Address: Kej Oslobodjenja 37, Zemun
I discovered this cafe only this year, and like similar cafes in Belgrade – it is located along a prominent street, subtle to the point that you would think it was a boutique or antique shop. What gave the secret away, was the quirky and unique outside tables, with grandma’s sewing machine attached to each one. That, and the super feminine decor resembling French romance with it’s rustic furniture, fresh seasonal blooms, elegant white sheers, and fairy lights in the evening.
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- Address: Toplicin Venac 6
As for the finale, well … it had to be ice cream! This little piece of heaven has become synonymous with Belgrade’s dining scene, and is located on the historic Kralja Petra Street. Almost miss-able from the street, one catches sight of a crowded entrance as visitors stand in long queues to indulge in smooth, creamy flavours. My brother introduced me to Crna Ovca “Black Sheep” a few years ago, and it has become our special place during every one of my visits to Belgrade. I love how unconventional it is , changing flavours every week to keep customers wanting more and more. The ice cream shop is also known for wild flavours such as gorgonzola, white chocolate with baked strawberries, sesame, dark choclate H20 and many more!
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- Address: Kralja Petra 58
Belgrade is literally a hot spot for amazing places to dine, drink, enjoy entertainment or party the night away. While most of these venues are scattered around, the city has neighborhoods dedicated to even more unique concepts. A visit to the new and chic Beton Hala along the Sava promenade is perfect for after dinner drinks, while Skadarlija – Belgrade’s Bohemian quarter is the perfect place to enjoy traditional Serbian dishes and traditional music. Obilicev Venac is a hotspot for live entertainment, while Cetinjska Street offers excellent pub style concepts for low key bites and craft beer. Savamala is Belgrade’s hip neighborhood where visitors can enjoy street art, live entertainment such as stand up comedy or open mic, and street food, in historical buildings turned into modern spaces. A special thank you to Nomandnommer for exploring all of these amazing places with me!
Disclaimer: All views are my own and all photographs are © My Pink Diary.