Black Sea Food and Wine Ukraine, Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria. Enjoy the Pleasure!
While travelling people always receive food and drinks to satisfy their essential needs. However, when the pursuit of love for food and for unique and memorable eating and drinking experiences becomesthe main purpose of travelwe talk about culinary or food tourism. It is very often practiced in combination with wine tourism.
Culinary and wine degustation tours are a particularly pleasant way to explore the lifestyle of locals in foreign destinations. Culinary and wine tourism are considered subsets of cultural tourism as the explore of cuisine of a country is part of understanding the culture of that country, because traditions in the preparation of food and drinks are part of the cultural heritage of one nation. Bulgarian, Romanian, Moldavian and Ukrainian cuisines and wines have their own beauty and unique characteristics and exploring them on their local territory is always an exhilarating experience.
Taste of Odessa…It is diverse and every time beckons with opportunity to reveal something new, unknown and unusual. Historically, more than 130 nationalities live in the city. Each of them, of course, has made its invaluable contribution to all spheres of life, and over one of them – Odessa cuisine – we are ready to lift the veil of mystery and to tell you about several of the most delicious dishes.
1. Odessa cuisine. Odessa kitchen is piquant and colorful. It has its own peculiarity and spice! Having assimilated the best culinary traditions of the representatives of people from different countries all over the world, Odessa cuisine represents colorful mixture of indigenous cultures and tastes. Fragrant like Greek, spicy like Bulgarian, gourmet like French and hearty like Italian, dishes of Odessa cuisine are small culinary masterpieces, delights of the table and pride of each Odessa family!
ADDRESSES: Restaurant «KlaraBara» (28, Preobrazhenskaya Str., City Garden), restaurant «Franzol» (City Garden), restaurant «Kompot» (20, Deribasovskaya Str.), Restaurant «Dacha» (85, Frantsuzsky blvrd), restaurant «Pecheskago» (10, Gavannaya Str.), café network «Zakroma», restaurant «Gogol-Mogol» (2, Nekrasova LN), restaurant «Sol’» (27,Bunina Str), restaurant «Maman» (18, Lanzheronovskaya Str)
__$$$ average bill (220 UAH): «KlaraBara», «Pecheskago»,«Franzol»
__$$ average bill (200 UAH): «Dacha», «Zakroma», «Sol’», «Maman»;
__$ average bill (190 UAH): «Kompot», «Gogol-Mogol».
2. Ukrainian cuisine.The most famous dish of Ukrainian cuisine has been and always will be the borsch! Having kept the overall integrity, Ukrainian cuisine is not certainly devoid of significant regional differences. Perhaps, there is a beauty of all national cuisines, when the same dishes are prepared in each locality, in each region with the use of specific technology and has its own special and unique taste.
THE LEGEND: History of the Ukrainian cuisine is very interesting and unusual. In the middle ages the territory of the present-day Ukraine was subjected to constant robber raids of nomads from Asia and the Middle East. In its turn, it has impacted on the character set of traditional Ukrainian dishes. Nomads stole all the cattle from the occupied lands, but left pigs that Muslims and Jews considered to be “unclean” animals. This fact saved many Ukrainians during the hard years. Therefore Ukrainians’ love for fat has historical justification. In some cities of Ukraine even monuments of pigs are erected! “To eternal wet-nurse of Ukrainian people” – the inscription on one of them says.
ADDRESSES: Restaurant «Kumanets» (7, Havannaya Str,), restaurant «Ukrainskaya Lasunka» (17, Deribasovskaya Str.), restaurant «Khutorok» (1-a, Lanzheron Beach), café “Puzata Khata” (21, Deribasovskay Str)
__$$$ average bill (300 UAH): « Ukrainskaya Lasunka », « Kumanets »,
__$$ average bill (200 UAH): « Khutorok »
__$ average bill (150 UAH): « Puzata Khata »
3. Moldavian cuisine. Among a variety of national dishes there are recipes similar to those that occur in Turkish, Greek, Russian and Ukrainian cuisines. Lamb is more preferable for cook of meat dishes but pork or beef is also quite common. Characteristic features of Moldavian cuisine are spicy taste, very attractive presentation of the prepared dishes and great tastes. Moldavian cuisine is famous for abundance of vegetables.
ADDRESSES: Restaurant «Apsheron» (20/3, Fontanskaya doroga Str.), restaurant «Ricco» (84, Balkovskaya Str.)
__$$$ average bill (200 UAH): «Apsheron»
__$$ average bill (170 UAH): «Ricco»
4. Romanian cuisine. Romanian cuisine is original enough. Evolving over the centuries under the influence of their traditions, as well as having absorbed the culinary traditions of neighboring European, Slavic and Ugric peoples, it has gained a reputation of simple and very hearty. The basis of the cuisine is based on vegetables and corn. Vegetable dishes are in abundance. National dishes – dozens of traditional thick soup that is usually acidified with kvass, brine, yogurt or other dairy products. Meat is widely used in all kinds and in all possible combinations with the other ingredients.
Restaurant «Bessarabka» (53, Kanatnaya Str.) – average bill (250 UAH)
5. Bulgarian cuisine. Bulgarian cuisine is based on wide use of vegetables, herbs and fruit. The cuisine is rich with recipes of salads, hot and cold soups. Cooking feature is thermal processing of products on weak heat within an hour, the products are mainly prepared simultaneously, as a part of one dish. Basis of many of the Bulgarian dishes are cheeses, such as soft sheep cheese and yellow cheese (kashkaval). Cheeses are the ingredients of many salads and baked puddings.
ADDRESSES: Restaurant «Mekhana» (1, Starobazarny skver), restaurant «Bessarabka» (53, Kanatnaya Str.), restaurant «Ricco» (84, Balkovskaya Str.) restaurant «Chetyre bolgaryna» (56, Ekateriniskaya Str.), pub «Besterpub» (7-б, Varnenskaya Str.)
__$$$ average bill (250 UAH): «Bessarabka», «Chetyre bolgaryna»;
__$$ average bill (200 UAH): « Mekhana »;
__$ average bill (170 UAH): «Ricco», «Besterpub».
6. Russian cuisine. Dishes and flavoring accents of Russian cuisine change depending on a geographical position. Russian cuisine incorporated elements of the French one, and also dishes of the countries of the former USSR and various people living in Russia. Distinctive feature of dishes of the Russian country cuisine – practically doesn’t meet such method as frying. As a rule, the food is cooked in the furnace; therefore, boiling and stewing are very widely used. Also it is typical for Russian cuisine to preserve vegetables and fruit using salting.
ADDRESSES: Restaurant «Blef» (85, Frantsuzsky blvrd), restaurant «Elki-palki» (57, Zabolotnogo Str.), restaurant «Assol’» (5, Arcadia beach), restaurant «Virazhevsky» (30, Zhukovskogo Str.)
__$$$ average bill (250 UAH): «Virazhevsky»;
__$$ average bill (200 UAH): « Blef », «Assol’»;
__$ average bill (150 UAH): « Elki-palki ».
7. Jewish cuisine. The formation of the Jewish cuisine was heavily influenced by religious customs and determined food prohibitions and restrictions (kashrut), as well as a settlement of Jews worldwide. Religious precepts of Judaism prohibit eating pork, hare, seafood, as well as some species of birds and fish. It is strictly forbidden to eat insects, amphibians and reptiles. The laws of kashrut share all foods of animal origin for meat and dairy, mixed use of which is prohibited. The Jewish cuisine contains dishes of Ashkenazi and Sephardi culinary traditions. And yet Israeli cuisine includes many oriental dishes.
ADDRESSES: Restaurant «Khevron» (30, Rishel’evskaya Str.), café «Netania» (23, Rishel’evskaya Str. ), restaurant «Rozmarin» (46а, Malaya Arnautskaya Str.), restaurant «Paradnaya №1» (1, Sobornaya Sq.)
__$$$ average bill (250 UAH): « Paradnaya №1»;
__$$ average bill (150 UAH): « Khevron », « Rozmarin »;
__$ average bill (130 UAH): « Netania »;
8. Gagauz cuisine. The Gagauz cuisine contains dishes from the European and Moldavian cuisine. Many ingredients are taken from Turkish cuisine. The most important and favourite product of inhabitants of Budjak is mutton (lamb). It is cooked in special way, using the forgotten partially national recipes and special southern seasonings, collected and prepared with one’s own hand.
ADDRESSES: Restaurant «Bessarabka» (53, Kanatnaya Str.), – average bill 250 UAH
|Day 1, MD||ArrivalL in Chisinau, transfer to hotel.|
|Day 2,MD||Excursion in Cricova cellars with degustation. Visit of the Historico-archeological complex «Old Orhei»|
|Day 3,MD||Visit of the MANUK BAY MANOR. Degustation of Sherry (Jerez) ; Manta lake ;|
Day 1. MD, Arrival in Chisinau(A sightseeing tours of Chisinau)
«Drink of Gods and Heroes» ‑ COGNAC DEGUSTATION from best manufacturers of Moldova, awarded gold and silver medals on International contests in combination with classic snacks on cognac: cheese, caviar, chocolate dessert, coffee.
Day 2. MD, Excursion in Cricova cellars with degustation. (Visit of the Historico-archeological complex «Old Orhei»)
VISIT OF THE HISTORICO-ARCHEOLOGICAL COMPLEX «Old Orhei» with lunch and degustation of homemade Nalivka (type of frut’s brandy). Open Air Museum, where you can see traces of different civilizations. Here was located geto-dacian fortress (VI-I c. B.C.), settlement of the Golden Horde Shehr – al – Jadid or Yanga-Shehr, Orthodox monasteries ( XIVc.) and Moldavian city Orhei (XV-XVIIcc).
Lunch in national style, in traditional Moldavian household, with Nalivka degustation.
Day 3. MD, Visit of the MANUK BAY MANOR. (Degustation of Sherry (Jerez) ; Manta lake);
Sherry (JERES) – is a fortified wine, which distinctive feature is fermentation of the stum under the pellicle of a special type of sherry yeast (the so-called floras). In some sorts of sherry the pellicle is saved on the surface of half barrels for the whole period of maturation of wine, preventing its oxidation. All sorts of sherry have a wonderful taste and a delicate flavor.
MANTA LAKE – one of unique reserved areas in the south of the republic. It is the largest lake in Moldova. For many years here stop migrating birds (including those from Red Book) are found rare species of fish, are created by nature floating islands, here was created a unique microclimate and ecosystem.
«LA BOTUL CALULUI» folklore program, fair, gala dinner in a traditional style of South of Moldova. The point is that, before leaving you have to drink, “at the muzzle of a horse”, the last glass of wine, grabbing a piece of warmth and hospitality of welcoming hosts, on the road.
1. Alexander Bernardazzi. Alexander Bernardazzi (1831 –1907) was a Russian architect of Swiss-Italian origin who was born into a family of architects in Pyatigorsk, Russia. His first job as an architect was as the city architect of Chisinau, Moldova. While in Moldova he designed and built a total of 50 buildings over his 22 years working for Chisinau, some of these buildings include those of the Manuc Bei Complex in Hincesti, the City Hall in Chisinau, the History and Ethnographic Museum in Chisinau, among various other works. Sadly, many of his architectural pieces were destroyed during World War II. Even after he moved on to his next position as the city architect of Odessa, Ukraine, he still continued to help the development of Chisinau through road and sewer construction and helping with the planning of various buildings. His love of Chisinau and Moldova even extended into the afterlife as he stipulated in his will that he was to be buried there.
2. Moldavian Cognac Tasting. Here, in Moldova, the Cognac has been called “Divin”, which means “Godlike”. Moldavian Divin is made using classical “French method” production process and has a bouquet of floral aromas, fabulous taste and flavor. The best winemakers meticulously selects and blends only the finest of spirits, achieving a noble, smooth product, that is why Moldavian Divin (KVINT, Aroma, Calaras etc.), awarded many gold, silver and bronze medalsat international contests.
They were converted into an Underground Wine Emporium in the 1950. Half of the roadways are used for wine storage. The magnificent streets of the Underground Wine City have distinct names, depending on the kind of wine preserved in oak casts in the multiple adjacent niches: Cabernet Street, Chardonnay Street, Merlot Street, Sauvignon Street.This “wine city” has its warehouses, tasting rooms and other facilities underground.
The “Grand Cellars of Cricova” house a remarkable collection of wines – The National Oenotec. The oldest wine is from 1902, Jewish Easter Wine, and the oldest bottle of liqueur, Yan Bekher Liqueur, is from the same year. Nazi General Goring’s private collection of wine is also there; brought to Moldova by the general during WW II to be close to him at the Eastern front. Together with other 158 brands from Bourgogne, Moseley, Tokay, Rein, etc. it makes up the precious thesaurus of the establishment as well as of Moldova in general, comprising nowadays a total of more than 1.3 million bottles.
However, the pride of the Oenotec are, first of all, the wines bearing the name “Cricova”, which brought the winery a collection of national and international tasting awards. As of 2008, the collection consists of over 70 silver, gold and Grand Prix awards. From 1966 the winery is member of Club of Trade Leaders from Europe, which has appreciated it at its true value. It is recognition of the production with Cricova mark. At the heart of the cellar are lavishly decorated themed banquet halls and tasting rooms, all recently renovated. Here guests can enjoy fine white, rosé, and red wines, old collection wines, and sparkling wines, the pride of the winery.
5. The Manuk Bay Manor. Manuk- Bey, Armenian by birth, was a renowned Turkish diplomat and Russian intelligence agent concurrently. The palace was built in 1891 on the project of the famous architect Alexander Bernardazzi. However, in 1817 Manuk- Bey died not having lived in the luxury he had hoped. The Manor of Manuk-Bay is located in Hincesti city about 40 km west of Chisinau. Now the palace houses the Museum of History and Local History. The estate has the following construction: Palace, Hunting Castle, Library and dwelling for the servants. Of course, the main building is the Manor captivates visitors by its former riches, once there were fountains and a small pond pleasing to the eye and glass galleries used to connect all the additional buildings with the palace. Unfortunately, there is little left from the former luxury to see, however enough information still exists to allow the visitor to imagine their presence as they walk around. The Manuk-Bey Palace has great significance in the history of Moldova and thanks the help of Rumania Government and UE project the restoration works will begin in 2014. At the end of the excursion all visitors are invited to raise a glass of champagne in memory of the great diplomat and to taste one of the delicious snacks of local aristocracy of 19th century.
6. Sherry (Jeres) Tasting. Why drink Jerez? Jerez, the Moors drink, is considered the “king” of aperitifs. It can also be used for just feast because aroma of sherry can not be killed by smoked meat or even fish. Sweet varieties of sherry perfectly accompany dessert. A glass of aged wine varieties combines perfectly with cigar smoke and coffee.
Jerez, contains a small quantity of tartaric acid. Dry, with tart flavor, at doses up to 200 grams only it is good for digestion. At the end of the last century, at the insistence of pharmacists Jerez was introduced into general use in England. Furthermore, sherry used to obtain drugs from herbal medicines. Moldovan company “IALOVENI WINES” (about 10 km south of Chisinau ) is the largest Jeres wine producing company in the Eastern Europe, having a capacity of 1 million dal of wine and a unique collection of wines that mark.
Dozens of gold, silver and bronze awards are well deserved by winemakers from IALOVENI obtained for these wines, which home is Spain, but Moldova could be considered second home of Jerez.
Map of the tour
|Day 1, RO||Arrival in Macin (crossing the border between Moldova and Romania at Giurgiulesti – Galati); travel by car/bus to Macin (47 km)|
|Day 2,RO||Travel from Macin to Niculitel and then Somova (70 km)|
|Day 3,RO||Travel from Somova to Enisala (50 km)|
|Day 4, RO||Travel from Enisala to Murfatlar and Constanta (125 km)|
|Day 5, RO||Travel from Constanta to Ostrov (118 km). Late afternoon, travel to Bulgaria (Vama Veche Border Crossing (150 km)|
Day 1. RO, Macin. (Arrival in Macin; Travel by car/bus to Macin; Night in Macin)
Day 2. RO, Macin – Niculitel – Somova. (Travel from Macin to Niculitel; Somova)
The Danube Delta Winery in Somova is located at the edge of the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve. It is the result of a Romanian – Italian collaboration, to which the De Fillippo winery has brought experience to be valorized in the Dobrogean hilly area.
The Danube Delta Winery business occupies 20 hectares of vineyard, with a newly-constructed winery of 300 square meters. The grape varieties cultivated are: Feteasca, Rkatitel, Riesling, Sauvignon, Muscat Ottonel (for white wines) Merlot, Babeasca, Blauer, Sangiovese (for red wines). The soil is not rich by nature, but rather poor and sandy, though it has been revitalized by the wild plants that have proliferated due to years of neglect. This makes it ideal for a low yield of high quality. Because the land has lain fallow for many years, plants which have grown there spontaneously have enriched the soil in a natural way. The climate is cold in winter, with minimum temperatures of 15/20 degrees below 0, with some rainfall and snow; in summer, it is hot and dry, with an average temperature of 25 degrees Celsius.
Day 3. RO, Somova – Enisala. (Travel from Somova to Enisala)
Day 4. RO, Enisala – Constanta. (Travel from Enisala to Murfatlar and Constanta)
Day 5. RO, Constanta – Ostrov – Odessa. (Travel from Constanta to Ostrov; Late afternoon, travel to Bulgaria (Vama Veche Border Crossing (150 km)
The Ostrov Vineyard is a producer of white wine, red wine, rose wine, dry wine, semi-dry wine, or sweet wine. There are 2 centres of wine making with a storage capacity of 130,000 HL. Ostrov Winery (45,000 hl) is located on Regiei Street, Ostrov. This is where wines are stored, bottled and made. Lipnita Winery (85,000 hl) is located just outside Lipnita, 27 km away from Ostrov Winery. Here, wines are only stored. “Domeniile Ostrov” is the “umbrella” brand under which the wines of Ostrov are merchandised. Along with the vineyard, the company also owns nearly 400 hectares of fruit trees and 200 hectares of vegetables. In the Ostrov Vineyard there is the possibility of tasting local wines and traditional menus. Accommodation is also available (tourist pension; restaurant – traditional Dobrogean cuisine), as well as an equestrian amusement complex.
Map of the tour
In Varna region
Bulgarian cuisine is a variegated mixture of colors, aromas, flavors and shapes, formed over centuries, bearing traces of different tribes and peoples who have inhabited Bulgarian lands in different periods of its history. Because of geographic factors such as climatic condiditions a great variety of fruit, vegetables, herbs and spices are grown under Bulgarian sun. They are skillfully combined and used either fresh and raw or cooked and canned in various recepies. Bulgarian cuisine features a variety of salads and soups, the most popular of which are Shopska salad and the cold soup Tarator. It is also notable with its dairy products such as Bulgarian white cheese and yoghurt and pastries – pitka, banitsa, etc. Tempting dishes are prepared from beef, veal, poultry, rabbit, pork and other meats or fish, but a vegetarian can choose something from Bulgarian cuisine as well. As a substantial exporter of lamb, Bulgaria’s own consumption is notable, especially in the spring. Methods of food preparation are different – roasting, stewing, boiling, grilling. Some dishes are prepared in earthenware pots and plates. Bulgaria is also very popular with its wines and the national alcoholic drink “rakia”.
|Day 1, BG||Arrival in Varna ; Morning – sightseeing tour in the city ;
Afternoon – wine degustation at Varna Winery, located on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast, between “Albena” and “Golden Sands” resorts in General ;
Dinner – food degustation in a traditional national restaurant in Varna;
Night in Varna
|Day 2,BG||Morning – optional visit to the Archeological and Ethnographic museums in Varna ;
Afternoon – wine degustation at Euxinograde Winery located in Euxinograde Park near Varna ;
Arrival in Pomorie ;
Degustation of traditional Bulgarian cuisine in a mehana in Pomorie ;
Night in Pomorie
|Day 3,BG||Wine degustation at Dives Estate Winery located in Simeonova mound, territory of the town of KableshkovoDinner and night in Burgas|
|Day 4, BG||Wine degustation at Black Sea Gold – an exceptional winery, located near Pomorie, which boasts a turbulent history and remarkable wine tradition;
Dinner and night in Burgas
DAY 1 : BG, Varna .(Sightseeing tour of Varna; Varna Winery, between “Albena” and “Golden Sands” resorts in General Kantardzhievo village; Food degustation in “Magic Spring” a traditional national restaurant near Varna; Night in Varna)
Day 2. BG, Varna – Primorie. (Archeological and Ethnographic museums; Euxinograde Winery, located in Euxinograde Park near Varna; Arrival in Pomorie; Bulgarian cuisine; Night in Pomorie)
Day 3. BG, Primorie – Burgas. (Dives Estate Winery, located in Simeonova mound; Dinner and night in Burgas)
The vineyards of Dives Estate stretch along the southeastern slopes of the hilly land between the towns of Pomorie and Aheloy, opening a splendid vista on the seashore. The grapes in the vineyards attain excellent ripeness thanks to moderately hot summers and long autumns. The bright sun, salty sea and unceasing breeze contribute to the unique terroir of our wines. Each grape variety is situated in a separate parcel. To combine all this with the region’s centuries-old wine tradition, we together with microbiologists and specialists oenologists, develop also our own crop of wine yeasts isolated and selected from our vineyards. The excellent cultivation of the grapevine plantations, the modern equipment and wine-making technologies, applied by us, as well as our great desire and zeal, give us reason to be confident in producing our wines and to believe that you will appreciate their unrivalled taste.
Day 4. BG, Burgas – Macin. (Wine degustation at Black Sea Gold – an exceptional winery, located near Pomorie; Dinner and night in Burgas; Travel to Macin)
Black Sea Gold AD has a long history of excellence. The surrounding Pomorie region sets a record of turbulent history and remarkable wine traditions. Located 20 km north of Burgas, Pomorie is considered the center of the best white grapes terroirs in Bulgaria. In addition, the white grapes competitive advantage is greatly enhanced by the proximity to significant quantities of high-quality red grapes. Black Sea Gold production facilities are located at three sites: a wine cellar in the town of Pomorie with two plots, and a second winery in the village of Kableshkovo, close to Pomorie. The Pomorie winery is specialized in production of red wines and wine brandy, the Kableshkovo winery is producing exclusively white wines. Bottling facilities are in Pomorie only. Festa invested more than EUR 15 mln in the wineries after privatization and planted more than 600 ha with high-promise grape varieties. As a result, Black Sea Gold AD introduced new quality products in the premium and super premium price segments. The two wineries are now focused on own brands production and marketing. The old tradition of producing exceptional quality wine brandy is kept alive.