Low prices, home-style cooking, no English menu, let alone an Instagram page: these are signs that you've stumbled on a truly local eatery in Budapest. Városház Snack, which opened in 1985, is the type of bare-bones, self-service lunch restaurant that was popular during communist times. Most of those places are now nearing extinction, and usually for good reason. Városház Snack, however, is still standing, and so are plenty of people in line at lunchtime for the cheap and tasty Hungarian dishes that are served in this shoebox-sized downtown space.
The daily-changing menu is written on weathered plastic boards that hang from the wall. The only problem? The menu items are partially obstructed by the counter's frame, hence difficult to see (think of it as part of the charm). As the day progresses, more and more boards are turned over to hide the names of dishes they ran out of - you should try to get there before 1 p.m.
I usually go for the daily soup (€1.5) and vegetable stew (főzelék) specials (€2). Also good is the fried chicken liver with a side of mashed potatoes and pickled vegetables, and the mákos tészta (€1.5), which is a traditional Hungarian dessert of noodles topped with puppy seeds and powdered sugar. That's right. Service is quick, prices are rock-bottom. Note that Városház Snack is open Monday to Friday, and for lunch only.