Guest review from Kiev by Classic Rock Radio presenter Marilyn Michaels
While in the Ukraine capital city of Kiev, visiting the Pervak restaurant was such a memorable experience, it deserves a full review. A quirky and amusing eatery, like stepping into a culinary Aladdin’s Cave, or perhaps Alice In Wonderland, without eating things that make you taller or smaller! Instead of a Cheshire Cat, Charlie Chaplin is present, and flying pigs replace the White Rabbit.
Walking into the restaurant I heard chirping, causing me to look up, and surprisingly saw birds flying overhead. I whispered to one of my colleagues that I did hope the birds would not be providing recycled added extras to our plates, but the birds are kept away from eating areas, so we were safe. Later, when reflecting on the night, I’m not convinced they were real live birds, let’s hope not, as birds do belong outside flying freely and not in restaurants.
I am sure there will be some men, and unweaned babies will love the place due to some of the waitresses in frilly, cleavage showing outfits. It’s not necessary however, the decor of the restaurant is surely interesting enough, plus the food is where my eyes were focused.
Ah yes the food, it is certainly carnivore heaven and, yes they do indeed serve Chicken Kiev, surprising eh? However for a vegetarian or vegan the menu was lacking, and some more choices would be appreciated. After all, there are millions of travelling vegetarians.
As we were a large group, they seated us in a quaint intricately decorated side-room, with platters of Ukrainian cuisine on the table ready for our arrival.
Still, to the relief of the two vegetarians present, the choices included some delicious bread, pickles and Greek-style salad, and we both ordered cheese vareniki or varenyky.
These are dumplings, neither heavy or stodgy, but marvelously light and absolutely delicious. I even managed to eat all of mine, which is proof of how good they are, I rarely eat a whole meal. These moreish morsels are versatile, and may be filled with cheese, mushrooms, and yes meat. They may be savoury or sweet, and I could happily have managed a few more.
There’s live music accompanying the black-and-white silent Charlie Chaplin movies playing on old TVs. In fact it compliments the movies so well, it almost seems the soundtrack.
A visit to the ladies room was a treat in itself, tugging open the heavy, old-fashioned door revealed a genuine work of art. Filled with paintings, flower arrangements and the overall decor made me want to sit there for hours, fortunately I made do with some pictures. It is certainly the most opulent place I’ve ever answered the call of nature!
Desserts… oh delectable desserts, calorie packed desserts. I ordered a sweet described as ‘something plum’ but when it turned out it was something pear, it caused us to giggle like mischievous schoolgirls. Imagine a pear stuffed with ice-cream and nuts, regardless it was plum delicious and the term ‘something plum’ became our ‘in joke’ of the trip.
They have an extensive drinks menu, and these are an important part of the Pervak experience. We sampled the cranberry vodka, and several wines. I’m not a big drinker, but joined in to be polite, as you do. My favourite drink of the night was an unusual apple juice, and I enjoyed many glasses of this juice which was smoky in taste and aroma.
Pervak restaurant is a must visit eatery in Kiev, and I would describe it as one of the city’s most unusual attractions.
Marilyn was a guest of GroupDF and the Firtash Foundation, but all opinions are her own formed during a girly giggling fit.
Marilyn Michaels is a presenter & producer on Classic Rock Radio where she also writes for the station blog She started life in Canada and has lived in various countries since. She did some acting and singing in musical theatre and film, and even a spot of modelling before falling ‘quite by accident’ into radio and voiceovers and now finds herself writing travel articles too. .Her radio interviews include James Brown & Queen’s Brian May among many more. She is still probably the only person to have done live radio aerobics instruction from a studio roof!
Find Marilyn on Twitter @RadioGirlProds. Marilyn is proudly vegetarian and active in promoting a cruelty free lifestyle.