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Evening meal near the Opera House

My wife and I are kicking off our 2023 European Christmas market trip in Budapest. While there, we will be attending a performance of The Nutcracker at the Opera House. We are looking for restaurant recommendations for a pre-show dinner. We are staying at the Hotel Rumor near Erzebet ter so we are within walking distance of the Opera House and would prefer a restaurant in the same general area. Now that I think about it, any suggestions re: a quiet place for an after-performance drink would be great too. Thanks in advance.

Posted by
18832 posts

So your show is at 7pm unless its the weekend, so its an early dinner or a late dinner. Since people dress nice for the Opera I picked some places that are appropriate for that. Not that you cant eat street food in nice clothes...... But It does depend on what you want. Here is a list of places that are either near the Opera or on the way to the Opera from your hotel. There is a lot more up Kiraly utca for instance, but they are going to be very touristy; and there are more on Andrassy ut for sure. I just picked some of my favorites that seemed to fit with an evening at the Opera.

http://www.sophiebudapest.hu/ Behind the Opera House. Not as "structured" and primarily tourists, so there could be four brits on a long weekend drunk sitting next to you. Pretty good Italian. Actually back in this area are a half dozen pretty decent tourist restaurants. Everything from Vietnamese to Thai to Harry Potter theme restaurants. Take a look.

https://patanegra.hu/hu/asador/etlap/ the best Spanish in town nice atmosphere. about 300m to the Opera House. Pretty pricy.

https://zenobia.hu/ pretty fair Lebanese food. Ate there yesterday. Being on Andrassy your opera attire will fit in and its within sight of the opera house. Not terribly pricy but not cheap.

https://pest.vakvarju.com/ on the way. Sort of a Hungarian Chili's (but better). Hungarian food very local place. Pretty fair prices.

Based on your post after this one (I edited this) these probably wont work for you, but I will leave them in case someone else finds them useful.

https://www.operacafe.hu/ Nothing closer. Its in the Opera House. I haven't eaten there since the renovation. No idea.

http://www.callascafe.hu/ Funny it wasn't open today but that might be because they were filming in and around the opera house. A first choice because its next to the opera and your opera attire is appropriate in the place. Hungarian food.

https://www.marriott.com/en-us/hotels/budwh-w-budapest/dining/ Among the swankiest places in town right now and across the street from the Opera. Once again your opera attire ...............

Posted by
12 posts

Thanks Mister E, I knew you would come through. Full disclosure: our attire will be more business casual than formal. When traveling, we use carry-on-friendly backpacks and formal wear has no place. Especially since this will be a 4 country, 31-day trip. Would you recommend reservations at these places? (it is a weekday performance).

Posted by
18832 posts
Posted by
18832 posts

Oh, and I missed the after performance drink. Just go behind the opera house. plenty of tourist bars. but most things in most areas do close at midnight. if you want later go to the gozsdu udvar (courtyard) they stay later or there are a few on the outter loop road that close later.

Posted by
12 posts

Cmon, Mister E, give us some credit. We will not be wearing jeans to the OH. And our days of staying out past midnight are long gone. Great photos btw. Thanks. (And I won't forget to report on the Hotel Rumor.)

Posted by
95 posts

We are aware that people dress up for shows at the Opera House. Have seen furs, heels and lots of jewelry before. We have tickets for a daytime performance of the ballet (Don Quixote), performance time is 11 am. Is it safe to assume that dress will be a little less fancy at this hour?

Posted by
195 posts

Excellent options already listed here (big fans of Sophie), but since one of my favorites isn't on the list, I'll add it here:

https://www.porcesprezli.hu/en/ It is down Lázár u, behind the Opera. Live music, lovely service and wonderful, Hungarian food. A reservation is absolutely recommended.

If the Nutcracker isn't too late, on the same street is https://www.marlouwinebar.com/ which would be lovely for a nightcap.

Posted by
12 posts

Thanks everyone. Time to dive into the internet and check out those recommended eating establishments.

Posted by
18832 posts

The wine bar Christy makes mention of is on the street behind the opera and is itsself almost directly behind the opera. There is a second new one about 100 feet from that one.

CORRECTION: it is next to Marlows. Very small, but on at least 2, maybe 3 floors (i havent gone exploring yet), very cute. Two large openings facing the opera on a very quiet street.

Full bar, craft beer, and wine. Sort of a limited menu, too. I am about to sample Spinich Pie (which turned out to be a satisfing spinich and feta pannini) .

The kitchen is upstairs and I think the waitress is the cook as well. Poor girl running up and down the stairs.

This is about a 4 min walk from where I stay. I think I will be back.

Hungary is a significant wine producing country ... and they do enjoy their wines.

Posted by
37 posts

I'm traveling to Budapest for the Christmas markets, too - end of November with Gate 1. Have you chosen which markets you will visit? And what decided your choice?

Posted by
18832 posts

There are 3 principal markets. Two are just a 5 minute walk apart. The third is a bit more of an adventure as its in Obuda. Then there are smaller ones about town.

This will help. https://www.budapestbylocals.com/christmas-markets-in-budapest/

The first 4 are all located with in a couple minutes of each other. Funny, I never thought of the first 3 and independent markets they are so close to each other.

The one at the Balna is just a few stops on the 2 Tram from the first four.

The one at city park is up the M1 from the one at Vorsomarty ter
The one at Várkert Bazaar is across the river in Buda and you either walk across the chain bridge or take the 47/49 tram across to it.

The one in Obuda, probably the 9 bus is the easiest way ... figure 30+ minutes to reach it.
The gozsdu courtyard is just a neighborhood walk away if you are staying in the right part of town.