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Best dinner restaurants in Krakow

The best dinner restaurants in Krakow, including Polish cuisine, modern foodie far, and international food.

8 minutes
best dinner restaurants in krakow

Tucked away amidst the architectural marvels of Krakow’s Old Town and the animated bars and cafés in neighboring districts are countless top-notch Krakow dinner restaurants. It might not be the biggest city, but there’s a colorful variety among leading Krakow restaurants.

Some truly stand out from the crowd. Whether borrowing from Polish gastronomic heritage or international cuisines, these are the ones we want to share with you.

What to expect from Polish food

It’s hard to categorize a national cuisine shaped by the terroir and contrasting eras. And you can’t overlook modern kitchens confidently rewriting the culinary rules. But here’s a suggestion in one word: pierogi. Only kidding. While the insanely moreish dumplings capture the spirit and flavor of Polish cuisine, it’s just one of many exemplars. We picked out the highlights when we wrote about the best places to eat in Kraków.

For every Polish food classic like gołąbki (cabbage rolls) or barszczyk (borscht), you are as likely to find inventive twists on heritage recipes.  

Filling out the diverse choice is a range of international cuisine from all continents, fusing food and dishing out globally loved favorites.  Happily, costs are comparatively inexpensive. Nothing fills a food lover’s heart like well-made food, gourmet curiosities to sample, and a check that makes you wish you had ordered more. With no culinary stone left unturned, let’s take an appetite-teasing voyage around the best dinner restaurants in Krakow cherrypicked from our digital city guide.

Monty eating pierogi at the Polish Plates private walking tour in Krakow

Dinner Restaurants in Krakow

Karakter

Google describes Karakter as a “meat dish restaurant.” Which is hardly unusual for Poland. To be fair, seafood also features. But vegetables take a back seat to meaty dishes with flavors borrowed from around the globe, with a hint of Italian favoritism. Polish flavors pop in unexpected places, like Żurek on mussels, a fermented rye seafood dish that could only be conceived in Poland.

The décor is stylish and contemporary, and the service is welcoming. More importantly, the food is a cut above the everyday. What more could you want?

Karakter, Brzozowa 17, 31-050 Krakow (Kazimierz)

Pod Aniołami

Best dinner restaurants in Krakow
Décor dating back to the 13th century in Pod Aniołami restaurant.

Pod Aniołami makes many lists of the best dinner restaurants in Krakow. It’s one of our picks of where to eat authentic Polish food because this gorgeous restaurant does it so darn well.

Décor dating back to the 13th century and gothic cellars accentuate the banqueting atmosphere. Once home to goldsmiths for three centuries (a fact celebrated with a touch of gold added to some dishes,) it’s an evocative setting for a meat-heavy feast. The menu saunters through a world of Polish flavors. Beechwood-fired dishes are the house special; think whole boar’s leg or Polish lamb (both require booking ahead.) Hale and hearty fare shaped by regional produce and tastes add flavor to marinated meats and several Polish essentials, pierogi included.

Pod Aniołami, Grodzka 35, 31-001 Krakow (Old town)

Starka

Starka swings the food pendulum back to authentic Polish food. Vodka, pierogi, marinated meats, and rich regional sauces are back on the menu.

Commissioned graphics and soft hues invite you to linger and slowly savor the bar-restaurant specialties. Among them are top-tier pierogi made by the mysterious Mrs. Rysia (she also makes a mean cheesecake) and homemade fruit-infused vodkas. Take Polish flavors, add a dollop of contemporary innovation, and season with Cracovian charm; it all comes together into one of the top dinner restaurants in the colorful Kazimierz neighborhood. If that’s not convincing, there’s also an attractive summer garden to drink in the sun with your infused vodkas.

Starka, Józefa 14, 31-056 Krakow (Kazimierz)

Folga

A choice cut from our guide exploring fine dining restaurants in Krakow, Folga ranks among the chicest and most inventive Krakow restaurants.

Sharing plates rule, but they aren’t dishing out barroom tapas. Mediterranean flavors prevail, with dishes like salmon carpaccio and beef tartare. Oysters are always in demand, usually paired with wines from the intriguing cellar.  Good news for vegetarians; meat-free dishes are not an afterthought.

It’s an undeniably classy venue ideal for romantic moments or sharing a bottle of good wine and a few plates. The only challenge will be deciding how many dishes to share, which may call for a second bottle from the cellar.

Folga, Estery 12, 31-056 Krakow (Kazimierz)

Zalipianki

If your dining ambition includes traditional Polish fare, great views, and a sleek setting, Zalipianki checks the boxes.

Owned by tv journalist and cookbook writer Ewa Wachowicz, it’s a modern joint with a diverse menu plucked that dips into Polish culinary heritage and contemporary trends. Open from breakfast, dinner is when the bar-restaurant comes into its own (read about some of the best breakfast places in Krakow). The medley of dishes has a European and Polish slant and caters to all appetites. Pasta and burgers are ordered alongside Polish favorites like gołąbki (cabbage rolls) and kotlet schabowy (schnitzel). It probably doesn’t need saying, but pierogi are available. As is a delicious apple pie following Ewa’s own recipe.

A terrace overlooking Planty Park is made for watching the world go by over one of the house cocktails or savoring something with more substance from the eclectic menu.

Zalipianki, Szewska 24, 31-009 Krakow (Old Town)

Filo

We head south again for another Krakow food gem, Filo. This time, the Greek islands are channeled at one of the most exciting venues in the city.

There’s genuine culinary know-how producing plates that are light, colorful, and full of flair. It’s not just mezze you’re encouraged to share; small and big plates laden with Mediterranean ingredients are meant to be pooled. The neatly whitewashed interior (there’s a thin terrace out front) and mosaics add fresh and light character that matches the food. A refreshing change from the heartier meals the historic Old Town is known for.

Filo, Świętego Tomasza 30, 31-027 Krakow (Old Town)

Venue

Cooked to mouthwatering perfection in the expert hands of the effervescent chef, Nicholas, Venue fuses French and Asian ingredients into Michelin-grade wizardry.

A concise and changing à la carte menu, with vegan options, is always interesting. Recent delights include wonton starters followed by confit goose in a foie gras sauce; Asian-French fusion dialed up to 11.  But it’s the tasting menu that catches the eye. 3-7 courses, wine pairings, and imaginative dishes attentively finished by a passionate chef who frequently mingles with guests.

If you’re looking for sophisticated Krakow restaurants that prize experimentation and culinary ingenuity, Venue is the venue you’re looking for.

Venue, Mikołajska 26, 31-027 Krakow (Old Town)

A few international restaurants in Krakow we recommend

Before we call time and wrap up this journey around the leading dinner restaurants in Krakow, there are a few international hotspots deserving a shout-out that haven’t yet made it into our digital city guide.

Salta

You could be forgiven for thinking Salta means steak. Beef is definitely the star, especially the chunky porterhouses and tomahawks. In fact, the name is a homage to the Argentinian province where they source meat and culinary inspiration.

It’s all organic and high-grade. And there’s an extensive grill menu besides steaks (homemade pastrami and smoked Iberico ribs get a lot of love). The refined interior is pristine, which is no surprise as Salta is a new and rising star amongst Krakow restaurants. Although pricey, the lines can be long, not least because the bijou patio draws crowds. The no-reservation policy doesn’t help, but perhaps standing in line will help build an appetite for the substantial steaks.

Salta, Miodowa 19/2A, 31-055 Krakow (Kazimierz)

Euskadi

As the name suggests, Euskadi specializes in Basque cuisine (Euskadi is the native name for the autonomous region).

Tapas reigns supreme, and the atmosphere is lively and loud as couples and groups work through stacks of small plates. All the best-known tapas dishes are available — patatas bravas, tortilla, croquetas, etc. — and some regional Basque specialties like Txistorra (Basque sausage) stew and rabbit livers in sour cream. Ibérian pork is plentiful. It’s all irresistible. With a laid back atmosphere, it’s somewhere to recharge slowly before joining the animated nightlife in the Stare Podgórze neighbourhood.  

Euskadi, Kazimierza Brodzińskiego 4/U1, 30-506 Krakow (Stare Podgórze)

Zazie Bistro

No city, however small, would be complete without at least one French bistro everyone raves about. While Venue gets rave reviews, it’s more at the cutting edge of fusion food. Zazie, on the other hand, is the archetypal French bistro.

La carte radiates Frenchness. Like any worthy bistro, chef specials rework familiar ingredients into exclusive plates. Duck in teriyaki sauce, for example. Brasserie-style offerings add variety to the quintessentially French choices. Quiches, mussels, and gratins in particular. Their fixed-price menus can be fantastic value. Distinctly French in appearance, the restaurant stretches over a cellar and upper floor of exposed brick and Parisian décor. One of the best Krakow restaurants to get a little gallic ooh-la-la on your plate.

Zazie Bistro, Józefa 34, 31-056 Krakow (Kazimierz)

Klimaty Południa

Bright and cheery, the pastel hues and rustic terrace of Klimaty Południa would not look out of place in the Mediterranean. Neither would the menu, which takes its lead from France and Italy.

A cozy nook any time of the year, the menu is packed with light, summery dishes and good value. Lunch or dinner, Klimaty Południa is a warm and welcoming place that transports you to sunny climes. A delightful place to refuel after a brisk stroll along Planty Park nearby.

Klimaty Południa, Świętej Gertrudy 5, 31-046 Krakow (Stradom)

Smacznego!

Okay. We can now call time on our gastronomic jaunt around Krakow restaurants setting the benchmark for superb dinners. Poland’s second city might be small, but merely lifting the lid on its culinary melting pot reveals how exciting the food scene is. Prices are comparatively low for travelers, and you can usually expect a satisfying portion. Conveniently, everywhere in this article (or digital city guide) is a short stroll from the city center and many notable landmarks.

Put it all together, and you have some tempting suggestions for where to go in Krakow when dinner calls. Smacznego!

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