VISIT TO "MECHAN”

Another type of venues very popular in Bulgaria are "mechans", whose designers refer to historically very distant times - the first or second Bulgarian empire. They are generally vaulted cellars, to which you descend by stone steps. The restaurant usually consists of several discreetly lit rooms, stacked with heavy tables and benches. Thick candles burn in mighty ones, iron candlesticks, casting a glow on the raw, inscriptions on the walls in Cyrillic. Sitting here, we can perfectly imagine the interiors of the Presław and Tarnów palaces. Just watch, Tsar Asen's boyars and bearded warriors will be seated as dark tables…

The menu is also arranged carefully; because they are adapted to the historical style prevailing in this place and it would be tactless to look for a vegetarian moussaka or jachnia here. As a specialty, however, various types of kebaps are recommended in mechanisms, including, of course, "stomna-kebap"”, served in a heavy earthen vessel, in which it was baked.

Seems, that Bulgarians have inexhaustible inventiveness in creating still new ones, a firmly rooted in the tradition of entertainment venues. No wonder then, that the excursion programs for foreigners almost always include visiting them. So the guides are leading the party, eager to have fun, from the Hajduk campfires, through khan's tents and gypsy camps to fishing villages, hunting lodges and monastic cells. And everywhere, delicious and appropriate "specialties" are proposed only for a given place” and perfect for every dish, Bulgarian wines. And yes, in Owczarnia ("The barracks”) We will, of course, be treated to a ram, which is now rotating on the spit above the great hearth. In the hunting restaurant ("Łowna Sressza”) we can order a wonderfully prepared pheasant, and in a fishing village - to taste Black Sea fish. In the monastic room (“Mona-strength Izba”) on the other hand, you should always drink red, not found anywhere else, heavy and sweet wine “Monastyrsko Szuszukane” (monastic whisper).

While clearly preferring tradition, Bulgarian gastronomy does not run away from luxury and modernity. After all, in almost every hotel there are smaller and larger restaurants that are very "European"” in terms of decor and proposed menu. Elegant interiors of quiet bars, “Varićte” with a rich cabaret program, they multiply in proportion to the development of tourism.

A typical example of Bulgarian gastronomy development trends was the hotel complex "Ambasador” in Golden Sands. We ate there, for example. "Viennese” breakfasts in a glass café and lunch in a very modern restaurant room, where only the view of the sea outside the windows made us realize the existence of Bulgaria, and in the evening, we used to walk along the winding stairs to the mechana located in the basement, where the dishes of the national cuisine perfectly harmonized with the interior based on the Boyar tradition and Gypsy music.