Tokaji Borozó

One of Budapest’s oldest and least pretentious drinking joints is hidden below ground on a quiet downtown street otherwise known for its pricey antique stores. Like other unchic, Communist-era bars that have survived to the present day, this holdout from the 1960s — no one seems to know the exact year of opening — draws mainly long-time regulars from the neighborhood. Although the wines are indeed from the famed Tokaj region, they're far from the premium stuff commanding steep prices. But that’s beside the point; you're here for the throwback vibes and the cast of colorful characters.

Apart from wines, they serve soft and crispy meatballs, liptauer-topped sandwiches, and also tócsni, a made-to-order fried potato pancake not unlike latkes. Also note: no beers and closed on weekends!

To remain unbiased, I visit all places incognito and pay for my own meals and drinks. If you're enjoying this article, please consider supporting me by making a one-time payment (PayPal, Venmo).