Ambasada Sledzia is a popular joint that gets busy early and stays open late. Something of an offshoot from Krakow’s famous 4/8 bars (think Bania Luka) it touts cheap herring dishes and bargain beers. The piece de resistance is a pleasant alfresco terrace on central Stolarska Street. It’s helped to make Ambasada a veritable institution of the Old Town drinking scene.
The interior is cosy and well decorated with a curious babel of thought-provoking chatter and philosophic graffiti that can keep anyone busy. What’s more, the vodkas are multitudinous, the beer sits at a pleasant 4 PLN (< £1) and the talkative clientele means it’s one of the finest places to start (or end) a sesh.
Stolarska 8/10, Kraków, Poland, +48 662 569 460
The drink at Ambasada Sledzia
In the absence of any fancy cocktails and mixers (although a smidgen of these are available on request), Ambasada Sledzia unpretentiously touts a kaleidoscope of vodkas and spirits that’s truly worthy of Poland’s reputation as the homeland of the clear tipple itself.
These range from sweet orzechówka (hazelnut flavoured vodka) to straight up czysty (neat) shots of the nation’s legendary Zubrowka. The Bison Grass variation is a must when it comes to the latter! Naturally, there’s also oodles of beer to get through. Expect local Polish varieties mainly, and not much in the way of craft.
The food at Ambasada Sledzia
While a far cry from gourmet, the food at Ambasada Sledzia is both filling and flavoursome in its own way. Patrons flock here – believe it or not – in search of some of the city’s most famous herrings. Options include those small fish topped with cheese sauce and pickled beetroot. And if that doesn’t tickle your taste buds then there’s still a selection of pastas and potato bakes going, along with a smattering of options for the veggies to boot.
The vibe at Ambasada Sledzia
Inside Ambasada Sledzia, customers enjoy a quirky and thought-provoking environ. Decorations of stencilled-on graffiti depicting herring anatomy (a homage to the establishment’s name and most famous menu addition) and the scrawled memoirs of patrons past adorn the walls.
The bar oozes with a sort of upcycled charm. It’s constructed from a mottle-and-daub amalgam of coloured glass bottles and the like, Meanwhile, the exterior seating area really is the piece de resistance; alive with groups of locals nattering away right throughout the summer.