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40, Saint Petersburg, Russia
Pirogi - The babushka!
Pirogi - Horseradish liqueur, aka POISON!!!
Pirogi - My main dish of chicken schnitzel (only okay)
Pirogi - Borscht - Pirogi's ranked right up there!
Pirogi - Entrance to Pirogi
Pirogi - Laura's Black Crow beer --- very nice!
Pirogi - Laura's cheese board - it is not just for dessert any more!

Pirogi Saint Petersburg Reviews

vances vances
575 reviews
Sipping horseradish liqueur with babushkas Jun 28, 2016
The motivation for selecting Pirogi was nothing beyond a sudden downpour, but this shelter from the storm turned into both a pleasant lunch spot and interesting cultural experience. Only two other tables were occupied in the main dining room around 1PM when we ducked in, and we were instructed to sit were we pleased. Thankful this instruction had been delivered in broken English; we decided this would be a fine place to wait out the rain.

Laura is a fan of dark brew, so she initiated the ordering with a draught of Black Crow. No idea where this is crafted, but my sip led me to agree with her judgment as a quality beer. We would eventually learn Pirogi is open 24 hours and apparently more of a night spot for the younger crowd, explaining the diverse drink menu and broad selection of beers on tap.

Even if they earn their keep on the alcoholic front, the menu revealed a deep selection of ethnic Russian dishes, and I ordered some borscht, followed by chicken schnitzel and a spicy cucumber salad. The borscht was right up there with the competition (I think this was the third bowl I’d ordered here in Russia). Of course the schnitzel was not a Russian dish, and it was only okay. It would be a far stretch to consider my cucumber salad ‘spicy’, but it was still flavorful. Laura was not especially hungry, but before our visit to Tallinn she had never sampled a cheese board for dessert. Now she was a fan and ordered one for a noonday snack.

The cultural experience began after we had started digging in. Laura poked me and said a 'babushka' had just entered. I am uncertain what the official definition might be, but for me a babushka is a Russian grandmother with a kerchief or shawl, and the woman who had just sat at a table accompanied by a nine or ten year old boy fit the description. Precisely. As if she did not want to leave any doubt, she complained loudly and continuously once served, and I came away with stereotypes cemented, lol. Her waitress’ weariness from the tirade was clearly evident, but I admired how it was professionally endured.

This may have opened the floodgates for miserable cultural experiences. I had noticed “horseradish liqueur” on the drinks menu and being curious (and on vacation), ordered a shot. In the future I may tell impulse to go for a hike, because it was supremely wretched! Yup, it tasted like drinking down a spoonful of horseradish. Beyond a marketing ploy for ignorant tourists like myself, I see no long term appeal for this awful mixture. I can vouch for Laura being smarter than me as she firmly declined so much as a taste, even before I dove in and revealed how ghastly the potion was with wrinkled nose and poisoned expression.
Entrance to Pirogi
Main dining area of Pirogi - this …
Laura's Black Crow beer --- very n…
Borscht - Pirogi's ranked right up…
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