We are on our way for the 2nd part of our Eastern European travels. In 2017 we went to Poland and Estonia and on this trip we are going to Hungary, Austria, and the Czech Republic. Our first stop is Budapest. A relatively uneventful flight with a stopover in Paris. It was somewhat surprising how busy the airport was but fortunately Judi C had arranged for a driver to get us to our apartment.
It is a really nice apartment done in modern Italian. Turns out the owner is Italian and he used an Italian architect to refurnish the place. And it is in a really nice location with several blocks of outdoor restaurants and close to metro and subway stops and not far from the Daube River and the Freedom Bridge (also known as the Liberty Bridge). We arrived around 11 and after settling in had a light lunch at the restaurant outside our door--caprese, bruschetta and wine. Then we stopped at the little market across the street to get some groceries before heading back to the apartment for naps. The grocery shopping was a little challenging as neither of us know anything about the language. Usually we can figure things out from the packaging but not so much this time. Turns out we ended up with baker's yeast instead of butter but everything else was OK. Around 5 we took a stroll down to the river and walked across the Freedom Bridge and back. It is a very picturesque spot where people hang out, mostly on summer nights. In addition to cars and trams, there are pedstrian paths on both sides for people and bikes and people also sit on the inside railings enjoying the view.
We decided to have dinner on our "restaurant row" and while it took us awhile to decide where to eat, we ended up making a good choice. We had a lovely waiter who helped us with the menu and wine list and had a very good meal. We started with drinks--a Hungarian beer for Judi C and Hungarian wine, Irsai, for me. Then it was an appetizer of goat cheese cream with homemade bread (both delicious) and a traditional Hungarian Letcho. We weren't sure what we were ordering as the waiter described it as something to do with bacon fat, onions, and sour-not sweet-paprika. We decided to go ahead and try it--when in Hungary.... It turned out to be a tomato-based soup with onions, yellow peppers and a sausage. Very tasty. We asked the waiter what was in the goat cheese cream. He didn't know but asked the chef but turns out it is "secret" recipe. He thought it had something to do with double cream. Whatever it was it was pretty tasty. The bill for our entire dinner was 5,625 Hungarian Florints which turned out to be $18.38. How great is that! Now our goal was to stay up until 10 so we wouldn't wake up in the middle of the night. JB