Deliciousness in Baku, Azerbaijan

By Laura Duncea

Deliciousness in Baku, Azerbaijan

 

 

This past Eid Holiday I decided to travel to Baku, in Azerbaijan.

I had never been there before and it seemed like an excellent option for a short vacay (only 2hours, direct flight) to enjoy some nice weather, green scenery, historical and cultural sightseeing and, of course, FOOD!

 

Soon I will be writing 2 more articles on sightseeing and my overall travel experience in Baku, with the intention of sharing some of the “must-see” places in the city, as well as some of its precious “hidden gems”- so if it’s going to be your first time there, you won’t have to waste precious time looking for places to go to and things to do!

 

With that being said, I think it’s fair to say that this article is all about FOOD in BAKU.

Yes, I admit, I am a foodie and given the geographical position & favorable climate Azerbaijan is placed in – I was totally hoping I could experience some new, organic and fresh food.

 

My prayers were heard, as I was fortunate enough to have travelled in the company of my dear friend Aynur, born and raised in Baku, who introduced me to the very places I am so excited to share with you!

 

I have to tell you, how impressed I was by the Azeri rich cuisine: a unique blend of Persian, Eastern European and Middle Eastern flavors! Seems like Turkey, Iran and Russia are the main influencers when it comes to Azeri culture and food.

 

Their traditional dishes are delicious: rice, juicy chicken or meat, adorned with a variety of dried fruits and nuts and infused with tarragon and saffron.

Oh, let’s not forget about their tandoor baked flatbreads… so fragrant and tasty!

 

If you receive a dinner invite from a local friend – then definitely accept it!

Otherwise, here’s a list of some of the “must-eat” places:

 

 

Qaynana – Milli Restoran  (Address: Old City, Baku)

 

 

Azeri cuisine in the heart of Old City.Mark this place for delicious traditional Breakfast!

 

The décor of this restaurant is rustic, cozy and has a museum-like traditional interior; every small detail in the room is stepped in homemade dishes, pickles, fabrics and even history - coupled with excellent service TASTY AZERI FOOD!

 

There are 2 different types of seating options: main hall & private dining rooms that accommodate small groups of people.

 

You can watch the bread being made in a hot clay oven (tandir) before delighting in its warm freshness with pomegranate jam and sour cream or pomidor-yummurta (traditional omelet) – dish made with tomatoes and eggs, along with other traditional breakfast favorites.

And of course, the TEA! Azeri culture is all about fragrant tea selections, infused with exotic flavors – expect to be offered tea EVERYWHERE!

 

Generous portions and reasonable prices can explain the many loyal fans.

You might have to wait for a table. But I guarantee it’s worth it!

 

 

Sehirli Tendir  (Address: Old City, Baku)

 

Mark this place for delicious traditional Breakfast and brunch!

 

Here’s another great option for another day in the Old City and it’s located 200m away from the Qaynana Restaurant.

Presidents and famous people from different places visited this place, though it’s not so big – you can see their pictures on the restaurant’s wall.

 

Perfect location for lunch also and people watching. Traditional Azeri food and no alcohol.  Although the place is always full, the food arrives very fast and the staff is very friendly.

 

The experience of dining here is remarkable and it shouldn’t be missed!

 

 

Four Seasons Hotel

 

This beautiful hotel is placed along the waterfront in the heart of central Baku, with the medieval walls of the Old Inner City. A contrast that perfectly sums up the evolving of Baku City: ancient, modern and a little all daring.

 

Marble pillars and crystal chandeliers reminiscent of classical 18th century France is what you experience as soon as you step into the hotel’s lobby.

 

We had been invited for TEA and sweets at Piazza – an airy salon, perfect place for afternoon refreshments, sweets or a quick bite.

 

I was also assured by my reliable source (Anyar) that lunch and dinner at the hotel’s restaurants are a must-try: Zafferano Restaurant and Bentley’s Club-Style Lounge (for a cigar and drink).

 

 

Paris Bistro  (Address: Zarifa Aliyeva St, Baku)

French Cuisine Dining and Café – Always Open 24/7

 

 

I know this is a French restaurant in Baku but it's soooooo good. When I needed a break from the long walks around the old city and the local food I stopped by this cozy place and I was very surprised by the quality of the food and service provided here.

 

I have ordered the French Salmon with steamed vegetables topped with a delicious orange dressing that I have never tasted before (especially in this combination) and for the drink I was looking for something refreshing and light, so my choice was White Wine Parisian Szpritz – a rich mix made of white wine (of course, as the name says it), sparkling water & elderflower syrup!

 

And to go full-French style, I had to try the Crepes, dipped in Caramel sauce – couldn’t be more happier with my choice!

 

The location is great for seating outside as well and watch the green park and people walking around it. I loved it!

 

 

Dukkan Restaurant - Organic Restaurant(Address: Mardakan at Azerbaijan, Baku, Mərdəkan)

 

 

Ok, so for this restaurant we had to embark on a mini-trip by car, as it’s 30 minutes away drive from Baku City.

 

This is the perfect place to taste an organic delicious meal, made with natural & original ingredients from Baku.

Their menu is so diverse, you can choose from dishes tenderly cooked on coal, smoked beef, juicy poultry & meat, different types of cheese, breads, omelets – all from local village organic producers. Oh my, I am getting hungry just by reminiscing on it!

And the honey… oh, the honey!

 

The seating area is so generous and rustic along the gardens and it’s designed as a private dining room, separated by wooden pillars & billowing curtains that gives Dukkan Restaurant a unique rural romantic air!

 

Also, if you’re looking for a place to buy some organic foods you wish to take back with you in Kuwait, they have a store you may visit before you leave!

 

 

Darya Fish House Baku(Address: Namiq Quliyev Küç.Sebail Rayonu, Baku)

 

 

Located along the seaside of Baku, Derya Fish House offers fresh seafood and fish dishes, cooked on pan or grilled. We ended up ordering 3 lovely fish dishes accompanied with salads, chips, bread and other nice things (cheese, olives, honey, pickled fruits, jams and so many other types of traditional bites)

 

The restaurant is very big with different seating arrangements. They have a spacious play area for children. Can enjoy your meal with a beautiful scenic view of the Caspian Sea. Great service and awesome food!

 

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