Buket restaurant review
Those of you who have already discovered and fell in love with the Kyiv historical centre, dytynets, must be frequently taking the same route in various sequences: Sofiyska and Mykhailivska squares, Peizazhna alley, and the viewpoint near the Desyatynna square. It sounds like a short route but the beauty of it demands time for the appreciation.
The explorers have definitely noted that the area catastrophically lacks good places to eat, relax, and reflect, unless they want to descend the Andriivsky uzviz, where various cafes and restaurants have recently started popping up like mushrooms after a summer rain.
Buket (bouquet) is just the right place that offers it all: pleasant and relaxing atmosphere, romantic setup and light but quality food offers. It is the excellent option for those who want to avoid the winding brick Uzviz, which sometimes is overcrowded and therefore exhausting. You will not miss Buket if you turn on your right from the Mykhailivska square and walk just a half quarter along the Velyka Zhytomyrska street, in the direction where it crosses with the Volodymyrska street.
A spring-off of the respectful and status Swing restaurant located just around the corner, Buket serves a decent variety of healthy food at prices that will not empty your pockets on the way to the shopping centres in the Kreshatyk street. A dozen salads, meat and fish dishes, and deserts are accompanied by a good wine carte. They have just freshened their menu by adding the seasonal must-haves: hot soups and starters, and home-made bread. A week ago, when it started getting really cold, I tried the new cream soup of salmon and shrimps (39 UAH) and was disappointed only by the size of the plate. Adding a pot of green jasmine tea on the bill (15 UAH), I paid a bill of only 54 UAH. A good tip is to take with you an ACC card that gives a 10% discount on the whole menu and drinks.
For me, a quite experienced Kyiv resident, the place is just a materialised memory of the cosy interiors that I have seen over the past 12 years, while visiting my numerous relatives, schoolmates or tutors. The large tapered natural linen pendants, of the kind that I once broke while visiting my aunt, lure soft light from the high ceilings. The rich bordeaux wallpaper with floral ornaments seems to be heating up the glentwein in my glass, and the light French music drifts me away to the places where I have just wondered. The restaurant has three areas – a lounge with low chairs and tables – next to the bar, a boudoir-like main hall with large mirrors and small table lamps, and a 2-table modern-looking area for non-smokers, my favourite one. Simply but stylishly furnished, the interior does not compete for your attention and allows guests to relax and talk to each other while still surprising you with little amazing hand made candle holders, pictures, and lively-looking artificial flowers.
The service is just good especially compared to the city restaurants of the same market niche. The other day the restaurant managed to serve food and drinks to their guests until quite late despite the whole quarter had no water supply! Waiters just politely explained that coffee is not served that night. Waiters are really attentive as they started recognising me just after my second visit to Buket. They know the menu and are able to explain with enthusiasm how the dishes look like and what they consist of. They are swift enough to pick on time your empty plate, and kind enough to remind you of the time to leave just a few minutes before the restaurant closure!
The only minuses that I see in the place are the huge TV screens (where this passion for TVs has come from to Kyiv???) which usually broadcast the boring local music channels and the lack of the stable clientele, most likely because the place is somewhat off the beaten route. Still, it is excellent for just taking a rest after a walk and for having a good party with friends, without raising your voice or putting strain on your wallet.
Velyka Zhytomyrska 6
10:00 - 23:00