Denver >Food & Dining > Budapesat Bistro
1585 S Pearl St, Denver, CO | Directions 8021039.687796 -104.980610
Mon., Sun. CLOSED;Tue. - Sat. 5pm - 10pm
Neighborhoods: Southeast Denver, Platt Park
Disappointing, uneven quality and overpriced – We ordered goulash and a vegetarian mushroom dish in sauce. Both dishes were stingily prepared, with thin, sparse, inferior saucing. My spaetzel were coldish and clumpy. The goulash sauce especially was a shocking and frustratingly lightweight , transparent version of the authentic original, with meat equally flavorless, an inexcusable abuse of a signature Hungarian dish. Cheap ingredients and fast cooking result in total lack of the depth and richness that made this dish famous. I agree with previous objective reviews in general and also found the chocolate rum sauce cheaply made and oversweet, and the walnut cream sparse. The poor quality seems to assume a patron with poor discrimination, making the high prices more insulting to hapless patrons.
Great Hungarian Food – Having grown up in a Hungarian household in S. Louisiana, I have traveled extensively and searched out Hungarian restaurants in my travels. There was the visiting Budapest chef at the Hotel Intercontinental in New Orleans (superb), the little Hungarian place along Bathhouse Row in Hot Springs Arkansas (great goulash but now they're closed), and then there's Budapest Bistro in Denver.
My son and I made a reservation not knowing what to think. The place is small and out of the way. But it turned out to be very quaint (I would even say romantic if not for dining with my son) - a nice change from all the chain theme resaurants that make you think you're in Disney World.
But the food was superb and authentic. We started with a garlic flatbread that is worth driving across town for by itself. They served it with a toe of garlic that you smear onto the crispy bread - excellent. Then we had a chicken dish and a beef dish - very unique and tasty. The portions are not huge, so if you want all you can eat don't come here. But if you want a pleasant change of pace, this place is definitely worth going out of your way to find.
Previous Reviews are Right: Elf-Sized Portions and WAY Overpriced – What a disappointment-- sometimes you read Citysearch reviews and really, really want them to be wrong. Previous reviews lamented the small portions and the over-priced menu. But my, oh, my, how delightful an authentic Hungarian meal sounded to us. We decided to chance it. Well, the earlier reviewers are right (minus the 2003 review which calls the place a 'hidden gem'). In addition to the small-portioned, over-priced menu items, you can also add bad service to the litany as well: We arrived around 6:00ish on a Friday evening, only to find the lights on but the doors locked. Confused and about to walk away, a woman on a pink cellphone unlocks the door and casually says, Oh, I didn't know it was locked and then proceeds to stay outside talking away on the cellphone while we were left to seat ourselves. A bearded man appeared just as we were selecting our booth by the window, but then he disappeared never to be seen again. We listened for a while to the woman's cellphone conversation from inside (she was mighty angry about a $175 phone bill). She finally came in and became our waitress. I ordered a $6.50 Spaten lager only to have it served with a hot to the touch, fresh out-of-the-dishwasher mug. Delightful. And the food: well, I joked throughout that perhaps we'd been served Lean Cuisine meals microwaved and plopped down on stylish plates. The Hungarian Goulash was bland, the sauce, an american-ized gravy and tough, tough meat. The Chicken Paprikash, like the Goulash resembled something from a pre-packaged meal AND it came out warm, not steaming hot as my dish did. Though we usually enjoy desert, we skippped it-- why bother? What a shame-- the location is wonderful, the restaurant itself is cozy and homey-- comfortable booths, adjustable lighting at the table-- all the trappings that have you feeling like you're about to sit down to a delightful, home-cooked Hungarian meal. Instead, we arrived hungry, left hungry and will never be back.
Very Disappointed – Being Hungarian I thought the food okay. The cabbage rolls were good, the goulash not as good as my family makes, and the Gundel Palacsinta was overpowered by the chocolate rum sauce. The food was not bad, but the price was outrageous for what you received. I wasn't sure if the potatoes (only 4 small slices) that came on the plate were meant as a garnish or part of the meal. I was very much looking forward to a good hungarian meal and did not find it.
.. truly scanty miniscule overpriced and under-cocked main course ... good strudel though.. – This has to be one of the "Ethnic" restaurants that forgot what the food in the "home country" was and is like. ! One consolation ... you will get your invoice for the truly scanty miniscule overpriced and under-cocked main course food with apologies! For this they will get another try..
Service ? perhaps for the new kids on the block that figure McD is just fine! The strudel though did leave a positive feel in the stomach.
Not $ – Listed as a cheap eat; this place was not. The service was excellent, the atmosphere romantic. Nice for a change.
A Hidden Gem – Budapest Bistro was a very pleasant surprise. Lace curtains, cozy lighting and throw pillows in the booths made it feel like we were dining in a country home. The food was excellent; my favorites were the sweet and spicy sauce on my Mushroom Paprikas and the cheese blintz with vanilla sauce was heavenly. The service was quick and friendly and the waiter made excellent suggestions. I will definitely be going back!
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