Eat With Locals Prague Food Tour Review
Written by Jaillan Yehia
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Why Take A With Locals Prague Food Tour?
In this post I review a food tour in Prague, which I took while visiting the city for three days. But maybe you’re thinking you can discover plenty of places to eat and drink in a major European capital like Prague on your own, without any tours?
Of course experienced travellers don’t always want or need to take tours in a new country or city, and there are definitely times when exploring solo is the best thing you can do.
But the thing about being a savvy traveller is you also know when deferring to local knowledge is a good way to go, and for my first time in a heavily-touristed city like Prague, and with only a short time to make every meal count, I wanted to make sure I got beyond the obvious.
When you want to get under the skin of a place it can be well worth using tours to get orientated, but I don’t always enjoy being told where to go and what to do so I am careful about choosing tours.
So having heard great thing about Withlocals, I was happy they could host me for this food tour of Prague for review purposes.
Want To Eat With Locals Too? Read My Prague Food Tour Review
I deliberately booked this food tour of Prague for the very first morning of my trip. And I made sure I had a very light breakfast before turning up!
The benefit of booking the tour to kick off your Prague itinerary is that you will be led around the city and can start to get your bearings, and you can ask your guide questions.
Plus you’ll gain a few fall back options of cafes, bars and restaurants to return to later on your trip, so you can avoid wasting any time and money on sub-par food or tourist traps.
I meet my guide Michal in a neighbourhood just outside the city centre. He’s friendly and easy to get on with and explains that his tours are pretty flexible. Adjustments can be made for weekday and weekend openings, food intolerances, religious requirements, or just your food likes and dislikes. Luckily I like almost all food and drinks, so we are quickly on our way…
Stops on this With Locals Prague Food Tour
The first stop on our weekday With Locals food and walking tour of Prague is a cute artisan bakery called Antoninovo. I can tell when I see the pastries that it’s right up my street, and to my delight they serve soya lattes along with their selection of homemade bread and cakes.
In the three years that Antoninovo Bakery has been going, they’ve opened five branches – and are about to add a sixth. They’re usually found in trendy residential areas, and cater to a steady stream of young professionals who are willing to pay a little more for a quality product.
Michal explains that the Czech Republic has a bread heavy culture (which is a plus in my book) and while those outside the capital would baulk at the cost of a loaf of bread from a trendy bakery, the Prague locals love it. This is evidenced by the queue beginning to snake out the door as we sit with our traditional Czech breakfast of hand made bread with egg salad.
There’s always a good value soup of the day to go with your bread (today it’s tomato) making it a great spot for a fast but healthy and good value lunch. Most of the bread here is a traditional rye and wheat flour mix – and they give away the day-old bread slices for free.
Michal shows us the signs (in Czech only) explaining that you take your dishes to the kitchen to help them at busy times, so we do just that and head off to the next stop.
Hamburk Beer Hall & Restaurant
It’s the kind of dark wood beer hall style establishment I would have expected to find in Prague, but Hamburk is a place I might have been apprehensive to try without a local guide. It turns out to be my favourite stop of the day.
The Lokal group is behind this franchise which has six branches around the city (and two outside it) – and the bonus is that prices are fixed, meaning you won’t pay a premium for city centre beers and snacks.
We each have a small beer in large glasses, and I love the story behind this special way of ordering draught beer: the ‘slice’ of beer means that you don’t have to advertise the fact that you are drinking a small beer by cradling a small glass.
The beer menu is carefully chosen and as well as the best pilsner in the Czech Republic they offer a black beer.
To go with our hops we have a ‘hermelin’ – a pickled Czech camembert. The pickle is not vinegar but oil-based, meaning the cheese is soft and smooth. Michal explains that it’s common to make this style of cheese at home and leave it for months, adding spices. We also have a delicious sausage snack and more bread and learn that it’s normal to eat these type of dishes with beer in the afternoon here – like a sort of Czech tapas.
It’s still technically lunchtime and other customers are ordering neck of beef and tomato sauce with ‘bones’ macaroni (small pieces of elbow shaped pasta) but I resist the urge to try it as we still have 3 more stops to fit in.
Liberske Lahudky Bakery
If comparisons are your thing I’d say with branches in double figures around the city, all selling open sandwiches for just one euro, this could be compared to a Czech Greggs, or perhaps a Prague Pret.
Lahudky means a fast food bakery selling sandwiches – and I’m quite pleased that the Scandinavian open sandwiches I love are represented at Liberske Lahudky.
I plump for roast beef, which is tasty and I’m tempted to have another, but we are already off for pudding.
On our way we pass somewhere I wouldn’t expect to be mentioned or pointed out on any Prague food tour; a branch of McDonald’s.
It turns out this is no ordinary set of Golden Arches: this was the first post-communist foray into Ronald McDonald’s signature fast food for the entire Czech Republic.
Whether through design, luck or pure accident, the ventilation system for the site piped the exotic scent of McDonald’s to hungry motorists on the flyover above, luring them in to sample the taste and getting them hooked forever (probably).
Skala Cake Shop
Skala is a brand new state-of-the-art cake shop where everything is made on site, in a glass kitchen, yet it’s tucked away down an unassuming but cute alleyway in the centre of Prague. It’s another example of somewhere I would have walked on by without a second glance if I wasn’t on a food tour in Prague.
I learn that ‘cukrar’ actually means ‘man who makes cakes’ in Czech, and in this case the man’s name is Lukas Skala. And the cakes he makes are pretty impressive.
With the help of Michal we choose some of the most famous Czech cakes, The Windmill and Liquor Peak, plus a colourful citrus sponge cake which I must admit I pick mainly for its instagramability.
The cakes are all absolutely first class, and as this is another place where soya milk is on offer I’m happy to stay a while and get my sugar rush on.
Vinarna Konirna Wine Bar
After the walking, the talking and the eating, it looks like we’ve earned a glass of wine.
You wouldn’t think an authentic and historic wine bar would be hiding in plain sight right by the Powder Tower, but that’s just where Michal leads us to taste some Czech wine.
This bar in an old stable has been serving thirsty Prague punters since before World War II but from the outside it just looks like a shop – so I would never have stumbled on the bar hiding in the back if I wasn’t on a Prague food tour.
I wouldn’t have been able to understand the wine list either – the only thing I recognise on there is Chardonnay (which I hate) but my guide Michal pointed me in the direction of the Czech equivalent of a Pinot Grigio which was lovely and served delightfully chilled – ending the tour on a nice note.
My Verdict On This With Locals Prague Food Tour
Michal is a laid back and friendly guy who is a real Prague local – having lived here his entire life you can tell he is brimming with knowledge. He’s a photographer too and a well-travelled one at that – so he is a great person to ask for tips on where to go in Prague and when the best time is to take photos.
For example he mentions that the Prague Castle exhibitions close at around 4 but that you can still walk around until late into the evening, and this makes a perfect time to take photos without so many tourists.
I learn a few other things about Czech cuisine – which fish Prague locals prefer to eat (trout and carp), what they eat for Christmas dinner (potato salad with carp or schnitzel) and where to go for authentic Vietnamese food in the city (the Sapa district). As I visit during a heatwave I also ask for tips on where to get good gelato.
I spend over three hours on the With Locals Prague food tour and they turn out to be a real highlight of my trip to Prague, and I would recommend this food tour of the capital city to anyone interested in trying Czech food in Prague.
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