Girl Meets Bulgaria

Musings of an American expat in Bulgaria (with detours in Utah and Alaska)


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Restaurant Review: Pri Mitaka (При Митака)

Restaurant Pri Mitaka--Gradeshnitsa, BulgariaWhen Vince made the reservation for our hotel in Melnik, the employee on the phone recommended we stop at a little roadside restaurant in Kresna on our way down because they had huge grilled chicken breasts. I initially thought that was an odd selling point–oh how wrong I was! She didn’t give a name or address, so we had a bit of a hard time finding the place, but I am so glad that we did!

Restaurant Pri Mitaka (При Митака) is actually located in a little village past Kresna called Gradeshnitsa. It’s right on the main road from Sofia to Melnik; if you are looking for it, you can’t miss it!DSC_1565

It’s clearly a family run business. The young daughter sat us at a table inside (there is also ample outdoor seating), the son was running the outdoor grill, the dad was sitting about supervising, and the mom brought the food out. We ordered one chicken breast to share, a shepherd’s salad, bread, and two Cokes.

And so began my recent obsession with the Bulgarian shepherd’s salad. This delicious mix of cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, roasted peppers, corn, ham, hard-boiled egg, olives, mushrooms and parsley (also normally comes with cheese, but I’m not a fan!) with oil and vinegar on top, is so delicious and fresh. I absolutely love it and have eaten it several times since.Shepherd's salad Homemade breadChicken fillet and Shepard's salad
The restaurant does in fact specialize in freshly grilled cuts of meat, as do several of the neighboring restaurants. The chicken breasts are hammered flat so they come out about 3 times the size of the plate. Grilling meat by the roadside

Everything we ate was incredible! The chicken was perfectly seasoned and grilled (not to mention ENORMOUS!); the bread was homemade and also hot off the grill; the salad was HUGE and made with the best quality vegetables; heck, even the Cokes tasted better than they normally do!

The second we started eating, both Vince and I agreed that it was some of the best food we’ve ever eaten in a Bulgarian restaurant. We stuffed ourselves silly for only 18 lv ($13.00). The service was awesome as well and as we were leaving, Vince told the mom how much we enjoyed the food and how it was some of the best we’d had in all our travels around Bulgaria.

We liked it so much that we stopped by again for lunch on our way home! It was slightly embarrassing to be back so soon, but I think it speaks volumes to how much we liked their food. We ordered the exact same thing only we took one piece of bread to go because one piece is plenty for two people. The bread is among the best bread I’ve eaten. EVER! It’s also shaped in such a way that you can open it up and slap the chicken breast on it for a quick sandwich for the road. We saw several people pull up in their cars and order them this way.

I can’t say enough good things about Pri Mitaka. If you are ever in the area and are looking for an affordable and delicious place to stop for lunch or dinner, look no further!

More wine from Kordopulov house and another meal at Pri Mitaka: two more reasons to return to Melnik!

W.

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On Rotation

The Grammy Awards were last night and Mumford and Sons won Album of the Year for Babel. If you’ve been a reader for long at all you have heard me fangirl over M&S. Love ’em! They totally deserved the award–Babel is great.

Anywho, on to the other tunes finding their way into my head lately…

My friend K. introduced me to The Civil Wars while she was visiting me here in BG and they are {were} wonderful. Unfortunately, the duo (John Paul White & Joy Williams) have gone their separate ways and based on their chilly acceptance speech during last nights Grammys for Safe and Sound, it doesn’t seem like they will be reuniting any time soon. I’m really enjoying all of their stuff, so I couldn’t narrow it down to just one song!

The Civil Wars–Barton Hollow

The Civil Wars–Poison & Wine

Taylor Swift featuring The Civil Wars–Safe & Sound

I’m indifferent towards Taylor; however, she sang this song beautifully and is a great match for The Civil Wars’ sound.

One of my favorite groups from back in the day (aka, when Garden State came out)–The Postal Service–has a reported new album coming out sometime this year. The electronic-style duo, led by Death Cab for Cutie’s Ben Gibbard along with producer Jimmy Tamborello, just released a song, A Tattered Line of String–which was a cut from their previous album, Give Up. It’s…meh. However, I have high hopes for their new stuff!

The Postal Service–A Tattered Line of String

What have you been listening to lately?

W.

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2012: A Year in Review

2012_blog

It’s hard to believe that 2012 is coming to a close. This year has been very eventful indeed and saw me moving from America to Bulgaria, confronting life (and a fair amount of culture shock) as a new expat, exploring my new home, venturing back to Denali, Alaska for a third summer working for Princess Cruises; time spent at home in Utah with friends and family, another leap across the pond to Bulgaria, and reveling in a ridiculous amount of incredible travels.

While part of me is sad to see such a jam-packed year pass, the rest of me is looking forward to the BIG changes and adventures that 2013 holds. There is already a lot in the works and Vince and I are excited for everything to come.

As I reflect back on 2012 and all that I have experienced, I wanted to share some of the highlights from this year that made their way into blog posts.

(It’s a long one guys!)

January:

February:

March:

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A Dinner Date at Pizza Lachoni

Pizza Lachoni

Last Friday night Vince and I decided to ditch our plans to eat at home and head out to a restaurant for the evening.

There is a pizza restaurant in our complex, Pizza Lachoni, that we’ve been wanting to try since I got here.

Before I even mention the food, I should say that this place has a few things going for it.

Number 1: it’s literally a 5-minute walk from our apartment.
Number 2: Did I mention it’s really close?!

OK. So it’s nearby, but what about the food?

It was…good.

Not fantastic. Not horrible. Definitely a solid B.

I should interject here that I am incredibly hard to please when it comes to pizza. I love the stuff. So I can be quite judgmental on things like toppings and the type of cheese a place uses. Pizza in Bulgaria is never going to be like it is back in the states. I have come to accept that fact. But my quest to find a decent slice continues!

Alrighty, back to the subject…

The restaurant itself is fairly modern and is probably the largest I have been in in Sofia. There are long wooden tables and benches for seating. They aren’t the most comfortable option, especially for couples, but they’d probably be great for larger parties.

There is a large bar and all of the servers are smartly dressed in bright green uniforms.

V. at Pizza Lachoni
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