|Steven Trumpfheller behind the bar, mixing our aperitifs. The lady in the background is Ema Destinn - the most famous opera singer of the Czech republic. She was born in this house (although not in the basement, I guess)|
|The comfortable sofas where you can also enjoy your dinner - or maybe retreat for your coffee and desert|
|The owners, Jiří Pešek and Steven Trumpfheller. Jirka takes care of the front of house and Steven is in charge of the kitchen.|
So when you read this you should know that I am friendly with this place. However, I'll try to be as impartial as possible.
In the spirit of Steven knowing my likes and dislikes, he recently let me know that the rack of lamb, which originally "seduced" me, was back on the menu for s short while. That was all I needed to decide to make a reservation for BF (who also loves the restaurant) and myself on a chilly Wednesday evening.
For aperitifs we had our usual: Johnny Walker/Coca Cola for BF and Gin/Tonic for myself (Czk. 120,-). And we easily made up our minds regarding the food. BF didn't want a starter, as he wanted to make sure there was room for desert. The portions can be generous at U Emy Destinnove. I decided for the giant shrimp (Czk 185,-) as a starter and the rack of lamb (of course) (Czk. 400,-) with boiled potatoes (Czk. 55,-) for my main dish. BF ordered a large steak of Argentinian beef tenderloin (Czk. 440,-) with tartufo mashed potatoes (Czk. 60,-). The deserts we would order later.
|The bread basket. Unfortunately I missed the tasty butter spread in the picture|
|While waiting for our food we could watch Jiří Pešek mixing the beef tartare for another table. A bestseller at U Emy Destinnove. I am not a fan of beef tartare myself, but I have been told it is excellent here.|
Mr. Pešek wanted me to taste a red wine, which he was considering for the wine list, but also hadn't yet tasted himself - a Moldavian "Rosu Du Purcavi", 2003. I don't know the price, because of course I wouldn't be "allowed" to pay for sampling it. It was OK, but not as full bodied as I prefer it, and Jirka (Mr. Pešek) and I agreed that it was nothing special, so it won't find it's way to the wine list. But I hate throwing out wine, it was absolutely acceptable, and of course I had it with my meal. Next time I'll probably order my usual Cotes du Rhone rouge Reserve Grand Veneur (Czk. 750,-). BF went for an Italian Chardonnay Castelnuovo Garda (Czk. 95,- per 2 dl. glass). Light and crisp and not too heavy in neither bouquet nor taste - exactly as he likes it.
|Moldavian "Rosu Du Purcavi", 2003. Honest opinion: nothing special|
|My rack of lamb. Sex on a plate!|
We both cleaned our plates completely, although the portions had been large. So we needed a small brake before deciding on deserts. In the meantime I took some pictures of the rooms. The front room is the largest one. Here you'll find the bar, 5-7 tables and the sofa area with an additional 2-4 tables. There is also a working fireplace, which brings a nice ambiance to the room during the cold seasons. There are always fresh flowers on the tables. The back room has 3 tables and is good, if you don't want to be disturbed. Most Wednesdays and Thursdays there is live music on the piano.
|On the little cart you can have Steven cook your food table side|
Incredibly rich and filling chocolate cake with an equally rich chocolate cream with a hint of rum. Great for lovers of dark chocolate (as myself) - and probably a nightmare for the squeamish who can only eat milk chocolate. So if you're the latter, be warned. I personally liked the cake a lot, and filling as it was, I still managed to eat every bite of it.
|The chocolate seduction rum cake|
|The Philadelphia Cheesecake - a signature desrt?|
|Jiří Pešek doing the Cognac Flambé|
U Emy Destinnove
Kateřinská 7 (3-5 minutes' walk from I.P. Pavlova)
120 00, Praha 2
Mo–Fri: 11.30–23.30 (Wednesdays and Thursdays usually live piano music during dinner)
Sun: closed (open for special events only)
phone: 224 918 425
phone: 724 977 602 - Steven Trumpfheller
phone: 608 813 509 - Jiří Pešek
|After all this food and drink it is nice to know that the toilets are classy - decorated with tiles the style of wine cases|