Stari Fijaker is a rare place where old Zagreb still lives on. While they’re walking from the city’s main thoroughfare towards the restaurant, which opened its doors in the 19th century, very few people are aware that this street is where city forts, residential houses and palaces used to be.
August Šenoa, the renowned novelist and short story writer, used to wander this street. Today “Fijaker”, a restaurant named after the carriage used to carry gentlemen, is a place you come if you want to have gablec (a cult term in Zagreb’s culinary tradition). Gablec may be linked to brunch. Although it can last well into the afternoon. The residents of Zagreb have always been fond of stews. And there’s no lack of stews in Fijaker.
Lamb kalja is a deviation from prevailing Zagreb and Zagorje cuisine. This seasonal vegetable soup is a classic Lika dish that invigorates and nourishes. Its winter version contains cabbage, whereas the summer version is prepared with broccoli, chard, cauliflower and just a few potatoes. Venison stew is one of the autochthonous dishes marked with the latter “a” on the menu. If you run out of gnocchi that relentlessly soak up the delicious sauce, your table is supplied with homemade čvarkuše (scones with cracklings) and Varaždin breadsticks so you can enjoy every last drop. You can also have a typical peasant’s lunch: pork knuckle, sarma (a dish of grape, cabbage, monk's rhubarb or chard leaves rolled around a filling usually based on minced meat) and sausages, which are bound to satisfy everybody’s appetite. Foodies yearning for a trip through traditional dishes prepared by Croatian homemakers for centuries akin to best chefs can try duck or turkey with mlinci that are so juicy they will melt in your mouth.
When it comes to desserts, Fijaker has come up with a solution for those guests who prefer salted desserts to sweet ones. Zagorski Štrukli are served with sour cream. Every bite of the tender pastry reveals a story of able hands stretching the pastry across the entire table until it’s wafer-thin and then it’s stuffed with cottage cheese. Nothing beats relishing every morsel and soaking in the special atmosphere of an old restaurant. Miniature carriages hanging on the walls and a natural size carriage at the entrance as if it’s waiting for passengers to take them to new culinary adventures of ancient Zagreb menus all add to the atmosphere.
Author of photography: Sanjin Strukić/ PIXSELL
Contact number: 01/4833-829, 091/1706-401
Working hours: Monday - Saturday
11:00 - 23:00
Sunday and holidays
11:00 - 22:00
Region: City of Zagreb
Address: Mesnička ulica 6; 10 000 Zagreb
Price range: 100-200kn