Best places in Kharkov
After I have been living in Kharkov for more than 1 year, I still seem to be impressed by some of the Restaurants in this city. Yesterday I went to Chili, a steak house in the center of Kharkov. It was simply an amazing experience, which inspired me to write this post. The first time you go to Kharkov, or any new city for that matter, you always ask yourself the same question: Where should I go eat and what is there to see in this city? We are trying with this website, www.go-kharkov.com, to give you a way to find good places to go see, when you are visiting Kharkov. If it’s just for a couple of days/weeks, or visiting many times over and over, we will try to keep this site updated with all the places you can visit!
All of you coming for the Euro 2012, we hope you will benefit from this site, to find some of the best spots in the city.
Since it takes time to write reviews of all the places you can visit, and we are writing all of this in our spare time. I have made this post, which is a short introduction, to many of my favorite places in Kharkov. The places which already exist on the site, I have linked the heading to the post. I hope you will find this useful!
If you want to add your own places, or just fill in the places I mentioned below to help us. Then we would appreciate it! This will help other people visiting Kharkov to find new and exciting places. Please follow this guide to add new places! Also please find the places you already know and add comments and your rating of those places, to help others visiting Kharkov!
To get to these places, remember to read my Taxi Guide of Kharkov
The Best Restaurants in Kharkov
If you are looking for really good food, top of the line, then I would recommend you to visit one of these places. These places are not extremely expensive, but they are the more expensive places in town. If you don’t go for the most expensive red wine, you can eat in any of these places for around 400-800 UAH, and get 2-3 courses, wine and a really good experience.
Unfortunately I have not yet visited this place myself, but some of my good friends in Kharkov have. And they all give this place a high recommendation. So I am not afraid to add this to my list of favorite places. It is definitely on my shot list for one of the next places I will visit!
Chili Steak House
Like I wrote in the introduction, this place was simply one of the best steaks I have had in a long time. Sat in the evening warmth of Kharkov in May, enjoyed a great Valpolicella wine, with 2 good friends. I can highly recommend this place if you like a good steak! It is located close to the Freedom square and the Lenin Statue.
Hunters Hut (Might not be the correct name )
This is a place I have visited a couple of times now. Each time I have not been disappointed. This is also the place where they have the largest whiskey selection I have seen in Kharkov so far, from 40 year old single malt, to normal blended whiskey. The food here is a bit European in style. If you are a food lover, this place is a must visit! The name of the place is still a mystery to me. I have been told a couple of times now, but it seems to slip my mind each time. But it’s located by the end of Novhorods’ka in a park, a 5-10 minute taxi drive from the Freedom Square.
A bit further outside the city you will find Albatross. It’s the restaurant for Superior Golf Club. Here you will find one of Ukraine’s best sommelier. Ask for Oleg to come and find the wine for you here, and you won’t be disappointed. The food here is also a bit European in style, and when your food is served, everyone at the table gets the plate at the same time. Here I literally mean the same second. If you are 6 people together, then 6 waiters walk out, each with a plate. Standing behind you, when they are all ready, they place the plate on the table together. To get here you will need a taxi, and the ride is around 20-25 minutes and will cost you approximate 70 UAH from the center.
Good Restaurants in Kharkov
There are many good places to eat, which will offer great food, good atmosphere and a reasonable price. Prices here range from around 200 UAH to 600 UAH.
A really great place close to Pushkinskaya Metro. Reasonably prices and a great atmosphere makes this it ultimate romantic getaway place. The food here is French inspired, and always worth a visit. The interior makes it almost impossible to sit more than 4 people at each table, so don’t bring lots of people here. It’s a place meant for a few people eating together.
Checkov & Abajour
I have added these two under the same heading, because they are very much the same. Their menus and interior vary a bit, but all in all, the experience and the quality is the same. You will get a really good meal at both of these restaurants, and especially Abajour is great for summer time. You sit outdoors in the evening, in a little alley. Great atmosphere! Abajour is definitely one of my favorite places to go.
I discovered this place only a few weeks ago. A really nice place to eat and the prices are very competitive. You will get a full meal with beer for around 200-250 UAH. Some great grilled pork at this place and a salad with french fries. The kitchen is Uzbek, and you will get a good meal here! As for me I have already been there 3 times, in the past 3 weeks!
Like Shoti this is an Uzbek kitchen, it’s a bit more expensive than Shoti, but the service and the atmosphere is also worth the extra cost. The food at Buchara is more authentic Uzbek and you will have more choices from the menu. I had some great meals here, and can recommend it to anyone who wants good Uzbek food!
By the Opera in Kharkov is a place called Shato. It’s also one of the better restaurants in the city. I have been there a couple of times, and each time the food has been good.
The only Indian restaurant in Kharkov. It’s located close to the Botanical Garden Metro. I have met many people who eat here, even people from America and England, and they all agree this is really good Indian food. There is never a lot of people there, but don’t let that fool you, the food there is amazing! If you are a sucker for Indian food, you need to visit this place!
Close to the Freedom Square and Lenin Statue is a great Italian Ice Cream shop. A Really good place to drop by in, in the hot Kharkov Summer and get a good Ice Cream!
Local food in Kharkov
There is also some local traditional food served in Ukraine. Some of them are restaurants, which serve traditional Ukrainian dishes, others are small kitchens, where you can go in and choose your own food. All of it adds to the experience of seeing Ukraine, and I would recommend you to try it, if you visit Kharkov!
Located close to the Historical Museum metro, it’s a cheap place to eat, and serves traditional Ukrainian dishes. When you come in, the food is already prepared, so you can see it, and choose what you want. Everything is weighed so you get exactly the amount you pay for. A meal here will cost your around 50 UAH, including everything!
Sloboda is a more authentic Ukrainian restaurant. We always go here to show people traditional Ukrainian dishes. It’s located in walking distance from 23rd of August Metro. This is a must visit for the people travelling to Ukraine for the first time, and Borsht is a must have soup!
Breweries and Pubs
If you are more the beer kind of type, and want to find a pub or a brewery (yea they do make their own beer in this city, and good ones!), you can also find that in Kharkov.
This place can’t be described with words, you need to come and experience it for yourself. Stargorod is packed every night, and with good reason! This place delivers the best atmosphere of a brewery/restaurant I have ever seen. Plus they make extremely good beer (yea the make it themselves in the restaurant, you can even see the kettle when you are eating). Another treat there, is that they have 3 glass sizes. Beginner (0,3 L), Amateur (0,5 L) and Professional (1 L). So ask yourself this, are you a Professional? If you normally don’t prefer beer, and normally don’t prefer dark beer, then treat yourself to trying there dark beer here. It’s really really good! Anyone in Kharkov knows where this is, so any taxi can drive you there, otherwise it’s within walking distance from Pushkinskaya Metro.
Though they do serve food here, it’s more a pub kind of place. Beerloga is a nice little place, where you can sit with friends and enjoy a couple beers. They also here have some locally brewed beer, which is good for the soul. Swing by when you and your friends need a break and just enjoy a good beer. This place is located within walking distance of Naukova Metro.
Patricks offer live sports, and they now have 2 places in Kharkov. One is near the Historical Museum Metro and the other one on the Freedom Square by Lenin. Great beer, great atmosphere and live sports. A great Bar/Pub for the people who enjoy beer and sports!
When you are walking from the city center to Metalist stadium you will probably pass by this pub. On game days, you will always find Metalist fans here, and you can also get a decent meal here. But keep in mind it is a pub and not a restaurant. Close to the stadium, so great as a warm up place, for a couple of beers, before going to watch a game on the stadium, but also always packed a few hours before any game.
Big Ben Pub
This place is located within walking distance from the Botanical Garden Metro. They serve some good food here, even though it’s a pub. And the prices are fair. They also have a good deal on “Business Lunch”, where you will eat for around 50 UAH a person. A good place for beer and food.
This is another Shato than the one mentioned higher in the post. This place is located on Freedom Square and also brews their own beer. Here you will be able to get a 5 liter beer tower, so you can pour yourself the next couple of glasses. Great for sharing with a couple of friends. They serve good food here, and many different varieties. Great place to eat close to the city center. Also if you get bored, they have a karaoke bar, right next to the restaurant. But don’t worry, you can’t hear them inside the restaurant.
Sushi in Kharkov
To my surprise there are actually a few places which do serve good sushi in Kharkov. You will find many other places, but I would recommend to only go to one of these two, if you are looking for good sushi.
Sushiya closed a couple of months back, but have resurfaced. Now it is located in walking distance from Radianska metro. I have been here 5 times by now (the old place), and was impressed with the quality they could deliver, seeing as Kharkov is a mainland city, with no oceans around it.
Tanuki is my favorite place to go for Sushi. Really good quality, but also a bit more expensive than Sushiya. But I really do recommend this place, if you can’t live without Sushi, this is the place to go. Also they do take away straight from their website (www.tanuki.ua), if you are at home, and want it delivered. I have tried it, it works smooth and the sushi was good! If you want to go there, it is located right next to the Opera House in Kharkov.
Pizza/Italian in Kharkov
The Italian kitchen is all over the world, and also very visible in Kharkov. Some of the better Italian places I have found, are listed below.
The waiters here are never bored, I have never been to this place, day or night, where it wasn’t almost full. It’s the restaurant in Kharkov which offers most value for money! Great, no, even amazing, Italian food, for less than 100 UAH per dish. Deserts for 20-30 UAH. I have been here many times, and often go here for lunch. It simply great! It’s within walking distance of Naukova metro.
Mafia is a big chain of restaurants located many different places in Kharkov. The serve good Italian food, and this has become one of the places I do most take away from. It’s easy, not too expensive, and they deliver to my house. Recently you can now book it all online on their website, which have made it a lot easier to order take away.
Good Italian food, and the closest restaurant to my office. This has become me and my colleague’s lunch restaurant of choice. This means that around 80-90 % of all our lunch meals, are being had at this restaurant. The food there is simply that good. In summer time they have a terrace you can sit on, which makes it a great place to sit, think about life, and relax! It’s located between Naukova and Botanical Garden metros.
Felice is in same chain and almost same menu as La Strada, so I consider them equal. I have also had a few meals here, since it’s closer to my home, but since I eat at La Strada almost every day, my visits to Felice have decreased. It’s located at the beginning of Pushkinskaya.
Nightlife in Kharkov
When you are done eating there are also many Clubs/Lounges in this city.
This place will serve you the best cocktails in Kharkov. Moskvich is the first bar of it’s kind in Kharkov. Great atmosphere and just like any other European bar. This could also have been under restaurants, because they do serve some good food at this place. And also it’s the place where I have had the most decent burger in Kharkov. But this place is famous for it’s cocktails, so it belongs under nightlife! Moskvich is located right next to Abajour by the Opera. So start off eating at Abajour, and then go for cocktails at Moskvich.
Panorama is really a great Lounge. They have really good food, good atmosphere and a great view of the city, from the roof top lounge. Panorama is located close to Radianska metro.
Sky Bar (Kharkiv Palace)
In the newly build Kharkiv Palace you will find a Sky Lounge. A nice relaxing lounge, where you can sit with friends, either enjoy a good meal, or just relax and enjoy the view of the Shevchenko park.
This is one of the hottest clubs in Kharkov, dress code to get in, so don’t wear sneakers and a worn out t-shirt. This is the only club in Kharkov which is not empty in weekdays. Even on Mondays or Wednesdays you will find this club to be alive. It’s not crowded but enough to keep a party going. To get here take a Taxi, any Taxi driver knows this place, expect to pay 60-80 UAH to get there, from the city center.
Radmir is not only a Club, it is so much more. You have a membership only Casino, Karaoke, Lounge (called Opium), Dance floor and more. This is a great club to party with friends since you have so many options. To get here I will also recommend a Taxi, even though it is close by a metro, I just can’t remember the name of it. A taxi here is also around 60-80 UAH from the city center.
In Ukrainian Misto means City, and this place is really a City. It’s by far the biggest club in Kharkov, and definitely worth a visit. Here you will, like Radmir, find membership only Casino, Lounges, and Karaoke. But Misto has 2 dance floors, with different kinds of music, a bowling alley, when you are tired of dancing and next door they even have their own Spa/Jacuzzi place. Again grab a Taxi to go here, it’s located close to the city center, so a taxi drive here should not be more than 50 UAH.
Other things to see in Kharkov
There are two big shopping malls in Kharkov, right next to each other. One is called Karavan the other Dafi. If you are looking for a place to spend a few hours looking through stores, this is the place to go. Also there are lots of restaurants, arcades, cinemas (only Russian/Ukrainian) even ice skating inside these two shopping malls. You can easily spend an entire day there. Also walking up Sumskaya you will find all the expensive brand stores. Take a Taxi to either Karavan or Dafi from the center its around 50-60 UAH.
You will find some swimming pools here in Kharkov and in the hot summer here, it is necessary. One place i have been to is Arkada/Arizona. At night Arizona is also a night club. Great place to spend a day by the pool and relax. There are also other places a little further outside the city, but i have not been there yet.
Walking around Kharkov you will see some great things. You have the Mirror Stream right by the Opera, and the Schevchenko Park next to it, walking from there, through the park, up to the Freedom Square were the Lenin Statue is. That is a really nice area.
The above places, is nowhere near complete. Like I initiated this post by telling I just found a new place, then the same thing could happen tomorrow. Kharkov is a very secret city, which holds a lot of good things hidden, until you uncover it. Hopefully this site will help uncover many of the things Kharkov has to offer. Because it is truly and amazing and wonderful city, once you get to know it!
If you need information from anyone in the Expat community here in Kharkov, then visit us at our Facebook page. Here you will find many people from different countries who live or have lived in Kharkov. They are all really helpful and ready to share their insights on Kharkov!
Like I wrote in the beginning, we always appreciate help, so if you know of places that is not yet on our site, then please follow this guide to add them! Also please find the places you already know and add comments and your rating of those places, to help others visiting Kharkov!