Oportó (a.k.a. Lötyi)
The peculiarity of the place is that you can smell the scent of bread with fat on the corner, too. And inside it’s like they used onions as air “freshener”. It got a name for itself for two other reasons, as well: there’s draught soda water and draught raspberry juice and wine is taken from a tap as coke or beer at other places. The gallery is designed as an old tram car. The bartender is a bit grumpy and goes out of his way to cheer himself up with the four televisions in the shop. The average age of the customers is 25-30.
The cheapest wine: 80 HUF/dl
Its renovation in 2009 changed it to such an extent that we didn’t believe it’s the same place. If our calculations don’t fail us, it’s gotten twice as big as it had been, which could only mean that the adjacent former sex shop was assimilated into it. There’s a rich selection of beers, rather typical to pubs on the other side of the Danube. The hunger evoked by the drinks can be pushed back with eggplant cream, wieners and such. The bartender was utterly helpful and nice to us. Our favorite was the Cimballi coffee maker with three (!) levers, among which, unfortunately only one was used but we got incredibly excited by only the looks of them. The finest spritzer of the evening was here. The customer base seems to be mixed: young, elder, middle-aged. The alcoholic types were not to be seen and there’re no slot machines.
The cheapest wine (Frittmann): 100 HUF/dl
Italcsarnok (a.k.a. Icsa)
A fine old place in Budafoki út. Well, it’s not that good. Yet, it’s the cheapest. Their wine is close to undrinkable and the bartender girl is a bit gruff. The customers include mostly young people and the “I’ll-just-gulp-it-down-at-the-counter” type alcoholics from the neighborhood. You can play slots and table football. The furniture is quite run-down and there are an incomprehensible number of fans on the ceiling. Also, there’s nothing to eat.
The cheapest wine: 60 HUF/dl
We can only write about it in an impartial manner… The shopwindows are beautiful. A really kind bartender lady greets you inside. A great number of wines, simple but delicious food and affordable prices. But these are all not important. What is, though, is that in this very Wednesday evening we found a concert that could make a good band scene in an Aki Kaurismaki movie. Half of the band is made up of elder of middle-aged homeless people. The “owner” of the band – as they claimed – is a elderly man who looked like a history teacher and slided the guitar as it was a sitar. The concert and the feel of the place were so over the top that we didn’t really pay any attention to the quality of the wine. There was only one TV and fortunately it served as not more than holder for plants.
The cheapest wine: 80 HUF/dl
Unforgettable for several reasons. For example, the best black pudding in the city can be found here. Also, here’s the best price/quality ratio when it comes to pálinka. Their wine will make you a stupid drunk and hung over, or so we were told by our expert. Gábor, the bartender seems to be stern and some need years to force a smile out of him. We succeeded in only a couple of visits. Ancsa, the other bartender, is indeed very kind. Sadly, there’s a plasma screen in here, too, that’s on all day and all night. Cigarettes are no more sold. The customers are very diverse. Gábor informs people in advance when he has fresh black pudding or sausages and it’s advised to reserve a table for lunch to taste them. We paid 350 HUF for two spritzers and a hot sandwich. This might not be a good indicator as the low sum warrants us to presume that a sort of regular discount was given to us. We’d sure as hell deserve it.
The cheapest wine: 75 HUF/dl
This is the teenager pub of the neighborhood. When we entered, the bartender was going on about which glass is the best for drinking kalimotxo. Loud Pantera music and football game broadcast fill up the air. TV in the corner. At around 11 PM there are only, like, 2-3 young people. The bartender is nice and very attentive to the needs of the Buda rockers, the young hotties and overly patriotic individuals. All of them can fit perfectly in Bástya. Unfortunately, there’s no hot sandwich to be had, only two savory scones were drying in a plastic holder.
The cheapest wine: 100 HUF/dl
One of the characteristic places of Széll Kálmán tér (former Moszkva tér). We got into conversation with two guys at the counter, who turned out to be the new proprietors of the place. They’re also bartenders, back office and DJs. They will close for July only to come back with a new profile in August. It’s the only place in the vicinity to find draught wheat beer at. They played quite good music via Youtube, which made the otherwise dull place friendlier.
The cheapest wine: 150 HUF/dl
Now, this is an odd-one-out. ‘Cause it’s not really cheap. Still, we couldn’t omit the most frequented non-stop pub of the night owls of Buda. As you can really feel a lack of company as well as alcohol in Buda, you must tattoo such places on your map. The bartenders are quite friendly. The interior is simply tragic but the terrace is nice indeed. A big advantage is that it’s next to the also non-stop Nagyi Palacsintázója, where you can have sometimes washing-up liquid scented pancakes at dawn after the 100th spritzer.
The cheapest wine: 220 HUF/dl
Big thanks to Boldizsár Horváth, the pub expert and timing manager of our journalist.