In Budapest, Onyx comes closest to offering a classic European fine dining experience. It's the type of place where crystal chandeliers hang in the opulent dining room and white-glove-wearing waiters scurry about with beautifully sculpted plates in hand. The dishes feature playful textures, rare ingredients, and striking visuals. Onyx, which is located in the heart of Budapest's downtown, is the only two-Michelin-starred restaurant in Hungary currently.
Chef Ádám Mészáros, who has been in charge of Onyx's kitchen since 2016, is a daring cook. This is apparent when just a single piece of roasted cauliflower arrives as part of the 6-course, seasonal tasting menu. His other inventive plates include the “apple ravioli,” where paper-thin slices of fresh apple encapsulate a creamy, baked version of the fruit. He puts a similar twist on the Hungarian foie gras, which comes in the form of a pate and a mousse, side-by-side.
The flavors don’t always come together perfectly - the water buffalo tartar and the panna cotta didn’t mix well - but most of the seasonally-changing dishes are both flavorful and visually stunning. (It’s a near impossibility not to wolf down the entire contents of the bread basket, particularly those studded with beetroots and sunflower seeds.) Onyx's six-course tasting menus run the equivalent of €100 per person (€170 with wine pairing), which certainly isn't cheap, but still less than what you'd need to drop at comparable restaurants in Western Europe. Note that reservations are a must and that the restaurant is closed on Sundays and Mondays.