dalmatian food in uptown zagreb. I can’t really tell if the food is average, or it were merely that the tastes weren’t so much or us. I will say, though, that the food in itself is rather average.
we came here lured by the prospects of having frog and eel stew – in a sort of go-forth-and-conquer-local-food mentality – but we found that we couldn’t as it was an advance-order item. so be warned! they need two hours notice if you want to try it.
they were fully booked, so much that even at 530pm – which really is an awkward mealtime – we could barely get a table and had to sit al fresco, pouncing on the unoccupied seats like piranhas on a slice of meat. their reservations book was incredibly full, so I’d also suggest reservations if you want to come and sit inside, and why not ask for the stew while you’re at it?
we started with a basket of bread that was served with grated cheese, and it was alright – not very special but of course much better than the one at vinodol. between the three of us, we had squid ink risotto (paella), a veal cutlet, grilled eel and fried frogs.
the squid ink rice was very tasty – and I think the best thing in our meal. there were chunks of squid and the rice was coated with the very tasty ink, yum. the veal was alright – a piece of fried meat is very difficult to mess up! the eel on the other hand weren’t the sort of fleshy eel I was expecting – I had mistakenly expected the sort you get in japanese unagi – and instead was very small eel deep-fried. it was so oily I couldn’t eat more than 2 pieces, and even then the meat was sparse – it had that sort of jellyish meat with very little ‘real’ meat. my vegetables – a requested change from potatoes – were gilled and tasty, but also very oily.
the frogs were the most interesting thing on our menu, and they were wrapped with bacon and fried. they were also a bit oily and rather dry. the chinese tend to cook frog by braising them so they get tender like a spring chicken, but this rendition wasn’t too bad. it’s not for the fainthearted though, as they come trussed up full-body and very simply wrapped with bacon, so you have been warned!
service was rather prompt if a little curt, and the food was quite ok – I really liked the squid ink rice. it is a very popular spot in zagreb, and they have two branches which I think is very impressive for what looks like a family-run operation – and indeed didov san means “grandfather’s tavern”. I’m sure if I’d return as the food was a little on the greasy side, but there are indications that this might be one of the better restaurants in zagreb.
located at Mletačka 11, Gornji grad (Upper Town), Zagreb, Croatia