Some pockets of Buda can be as lively as Pest, but they're few and far between. The area around Bartók Béla Boulevard is one such revitalized Buda neighborhood, featuring art galleries, cafés, and bars. Kelet, an all-purpose, all-day café, was one of the early birds here, and has helped breathe new life into the street.
Kelet’s claim to fame is their coffee. The beans come from Colombia, Kenya, and Ethiopia, and they're served in espresso-, filter-, and Turkish coffee-forms. The cozy interior is lined with walls of books, and boasts a floor-to-ceiling window that overlooks the stately Bartók Béla Boulevard and is perfect for people-watching. I most enjoy Kelet in the evenings, when the small, crammed tables fill to capacity with locals, and quiet chatter permeates the dimly lit interior. The patrons, a cross section of the neighborhood, exude a healthy sense of bourgeois sensibility.
If you need a snack, instead of the mediocre sandwiches or Middle Eastern-inspired mezze plates, go for the daily cake specials like the carrot cake, whch is rich and tasty without being cloyingly sweet. Tea fans can indulge in a number of Chinese (oolong) and Japanese (sencha, matcha) loose leaf tea varieties. Local beer and wine are also available.