Going Out: Rydygiera Courtyard | Warsaw Insider
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A diamond in the rough, the courtyard buildings at Rydygiera 9 house three restaurants with unexpected charm. Kraken Bar Żoliborz Quint from Jaws –... Going Out: Rydygiera Courtyard
Going Out: Rydygiera Courtyard Going Out: Rydygiera Courtyard

A diamond in the rough, the courtyard buildings at Rydygiera 9 house three restaurants with unexpected charm.

Kraken Bar Żoliborz

Quint from Jaws – do you remember that old seadog? Well, were he to ever trade the shark hunting racket for bar design you’d imagine Kraken would be the result.

Named after the tentacled monster so feared in maritime mythology, this bar is certainly interesting to look at. Not short of fishing nets, lanterns and shark fangs, the details are such that even the tables come with engraved caricatures of seafaring heroes and pipe-smoking mermaids!

But if that weren’t bizarre enough, cast your eyes further to discover a wall of cymbals and portraits of tattooed dudes that get even stranger in the men’s toilet. Traipse to the urinal and you’ll find yourself gazing at a collage of vintage tattoo pics – yep, in among them you might spot a decorated manhood proudly displayed. 

Visit THIS cute cafe in the area too!

Already legendary in the city center on account of their Poznańska location, the Żoliborz restaurant on Rydygiera feels even better on account of its shack-like interior – but let’s not kid ourselves, during summer it’s the courtyard that’s the magnet.

Fueling the sense of reverie, pick through a seafood menu featuring tuna burgers, calamari, and sardines on toast, before exploring a flexi booze choice that includes Guinness, massive pints of Hoegaarden and a couple of crafty choices. The rum-based cocktails though earn their own star billing – the dark & stormy is our default order.

Restaurant website, HERE

SAM Żoliborz

It must have taken cojones to launch here, but by doing so six-years ago SAM paved the way for others to come. First founded in Powiśle, SAM were among the original wave of artisanal bakeries, and their reputation has carried down over the years that have followed.

SAM sits split between an outdoor area, shaded by triangular overhead sails, and an interior busy with retro, curve-backed seats and light wooden finishes. The comfy interior gives the location an informal mood that feels right for a catch-up with friends. Out of all three restaurants on Rydygiera, this is the most popular among the young and hip!

So…swag some bio wine, bread and assorted jarred goodies from their store and nestle in for an evening of conversation over eco-minded light bites and summery sips. We suggest an Aperol spritz, mimosa or Bellini. A chain it might be, but there is nothing contrived about SAM. It looks, feels and tastes like a labor of love. 

Restaurant website, HERE.

Pa Ta Thai

Flanked by car repair garages and overgrown wasteland, you don’t automatically assume you’ll find something swish within.

But Pa Ta Thai is most certainly just that. Walking through a cool courtyard decorated with palms and overhead lightbulbs, one enters to discover a surprisingly spacious venue. Splashed out in jungle green colors, this rainforest effect is given added oomph by the greenery dangling from the ceiling.

From the design point of view, it’s a place that feels casual but elegant. And the presence of a large copper-colored bar affirms that it’s as much about drinking as it is about the food – inspired by the tastes of Asia, order sophisticated cocktails geared up for the sweaty season: the subtle and refreshing Lemongrass Mule or the fruity Green Mekong, a compilation of whisky, lime juice, coriander syrup and pineapple. Smooth, easy drinking at its best, these are cocktails of admirable competence.  

Insider’s Favorite Thai Food Spots in Warsaw:

Naam Thai

San Thai

Chop Chop Thai Lody (A Thai ice cream parlor!)

Then, there’s the food. Taking care of that angle is Surat Butsarakham, a native of Udon Thani in the north-east of Thailand. Full of fresh, balanced flavors his cooking is to be applauded, even if the green curry – marked as the spiciest dish on the menu – lacks the tangy, vivid punch you might otherwise expect. That aside, there isn’t much that can be faulted here.

Restaurant website, HERE.

So, it’s time to make up your mind. Which of the three restaurants on Rydygiera will you go to?

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