When I want to impress my friends that Budapest has restaurants as hip as those in the East Village, I take them out to DOBRUMBA. With a chic crowd, effortlessly cool design, and a Middle Eastern menu, DOBRUMBA is one of the trendiest restaurants in Budapest's buzzing Jewish Quarter currently. Think: artfully chipped pale-yellow walls, oversized windows that are swung open in the summer months, and ear-catching electronic music piping through the speakers.
The only downside, however, is that the food often falls short at DOBRUMBA. The vegetables were indistinct in the shakshuka and the Moroccan harira soup; the hummus with paprika didn't have a creamy texture; the muhammara, a pepper- and walnut-based spread, was dry. Frustratingly, the pitas lack a crispy freshness. Not all dishes disappoint though: the labneh and the baba ganoush are light and tasty, the chicken tagine tender. I also enjoyed the basbousa, which is rich semolina cake with a tangy yogurt that's the perfect foil to the sweetness of the dough.
Notwithstanding the mediocre food, there're valid reasons why DOBRUMBA is so popular. It's one of the few restaurants in Budapest that understands how to satisfy a foreign, mainly Millennial dining crowd, for whom ambiance, Instagrammability, quality of service, and the depth of the drinks menu often matter more than their palates' experience. Reservations are a must.