Waking up to grab 250gr of burek with cheese and a yogurt, gobbling đevrek for lunch and having a late night pljeskavica are marks that distinguish a Belgrader (well, at least aspiring) from a mere tourist and should thus be indulged by shoe-string and business travelers alike. This second installment of the guide cover the best grills, creperies, pizzas places and, of course, bakeries to be indulged in. Although fast food in Serbia is not for the faint-hearted, there is a lot of subtlety involved and the experience can vary extremely between, say, a run-of-the-mill bakery with under-baked pogačice and a heaven of crispness that can be found in, say Čarli. Also be aware that you are likely to be underwhelmed by the offering of the traditional continental fare, so perhaps the best thing is to avoid it altogether and indulge in the local specialites.
Loki (Corner of Jovanova and Kralja Petra)
Loki, for all of its misgivings, is the most loved late-night grill in Dorćol, a fact evidenced by a courageous defense mounted by the locals when the original shop (in a rather esthetically challenged shack) was to be demolished. Safely moved a few meters downs into more seemly and legal premises, Loki offers the usual fare of grills, of which we can warmly recommend a “maxi gurmanska” (large burger with cheese and bacon) with “urnebes” (a spicy cheese and paprika based spread).
Sarajevski ćevap (Cara Dušana 131)
Sarajevo grill (which is only beef based) is revered by foodies across ex-Yugoslavia, and Sarajevski ćevap does it justice, especially because it serves it in unbeatable somun bread. The only caveats are that the place is a tad pricey and that eating hot somun and ćevapi on the go is a bit of a feat thus it may be a good idea to have a sit down meal here.
Stepin vajat (Vojvode Stepe 2L)
Although a bit far from the city centre, Stepin vajat offers the best and most varied grill full stop. As it is a usually packed at night, it may be a good idea to venture there before hitting town to rakija-proof oneself.
Glumac (Braće Jugovića 7)
Located conveniently behind the National theatre in a rustic looking shop, Glumac offers the best palačinkas (crepes) in town. All crepes are humongous and generously filled, and come both sweet and savoury. We recommend the combo of Nutella, Plazma (biscuit) and banana, a Belgrade favourite.
Trpković (Nemanjina 32)
Trpković is a mini chain of bakeries with a long tradition and is arguably the most famous in Belgarde. The offering of pastries is very diverse and good quality across the board, however the standouts are their bureks for which there is a separate line. The safe choices (cheese, meet or plain) are all good and there is an even greasier and slighlty outlandish ham and hard cheese variant.
Čarli (Dečanska,nest to Balkan Cinema, just below the Republic square)
This beautifully designed traditional bakery only offers sweet or salty kifle (brioches), pogačice (plain or with čvarci i.e. smoked pork scratchings) and (Užice) burek, but all three items are perfect in their own right. It also keeps the traditional opening hours of 5am to 2.30pm, making it a perfect place to start an early morning tour of the city.
Aca (Svetogorska 25)
Aca bakery has a reputation for innovation on the bakery scene and is one of the rare ones to offer fresh artisan whole-grain breads and quality Danish pastries. For a quick hearty snack, however, there is no beating of Kraljevska Pašteta (pastry cup filled with cheese, ham and egg).
Naša pekara (Kajmakčalanska 5)
Although Naša pekara (meaning “Our bakery”) is a bit out of the way it offers the best (Austrian-style) filled donuts in town and very addictive garlicky bread-sticks. Not to miss if in that neck of the woods.
Sarajevo (Svetogorska 38)
Another amazing joint that authentically brings Sarajevo’s fabled cuisine to Belgrade. It is also the place for those who find Serbian (or rather – Niš) burek too greasy (or too round), as the Bosnian variant is less greasy and comes in an easier to eat shape. Also, this place is a late night favourite so you might find familiar faces after a night out.
Solunac (Kralja Milana 36)
Despite being an eye and nose sore, Solunac offers the best gyros in town and is very conveniently located on one of Belgrade’s main streets.