The Best Pubs, Bars, Lounges, Food & Beer; Take A Pub Crawl
Today, Kiev is one of the most attractive destinations in Europe. Why? There are several reasons this is the case.
Firstly, in comparison with the well-known and widely popular Paris, Barcelona and Rome, Ukraine is incredibly inexpensive place to travel To make it clear, metro fare is 20 cents, taxi from one point of the city to another is only $4. A beer in the heart of Kiev on Independence Square is just $1.50.
Plus, for you single guys, everyone likes Ukrainian girls and when you get there you will see they are beautiful and friendly.
However, my task as a local expert on Kiev bar crawls is to tell you about worthy bars, pubs and nightclubs. Do not get lost in what Google offers and do not lose your time in Kiev, but definitely go to the place with the right atmosphere that will be buzzing you and your friends.
So, let’s start with the pubs where you’ll find out what is special about Ukrainian.
The Best Kiev Pubs
Kiev is quite a beer city, and pubs are literally at every step, especially in the city center. Kievans can have a glass of a foamy drink manufactured in different countries – Belgium, England, Germany, the Czech Republic. However, nothing compares to a glass of fresh just brewed beer you can taste only at the brewery.
Here’s a rundown of the best pubs:
Pyvna Duma (Beer Place)
• glass of fresh brewed beer – 40 UAH/0.5 l
• snacks – 40 UAH, snacks and salads – 60-190 UAH, main meals – 90 UAH and above
• average check – about 200 UAH
The history of the Beer Duma is about 6 years old. The owner of the restaurant initially made a bid for quality beer, having bought good equipment and quality raw materials, but most importantly – he invited Sergey Goiko, the famous brewer. Thanks to Sergey’s talent, it became possible to bring the taste of the local beer to perfection. The menu of the restaurant is simple and concise – burgers, sausages, steaks, snacks for beer. There are four main varieties of the beer: classical light Pilsner type, wheat German Weizen type, dark and pale ale – version of the popular in the UK and US IPA style beer, however, adapted for the Ukrainian market. If you do not know which to choose, order a tasting set – 100 ml of each kind of beer; this will help you make your choice faster.
• 5 Spasska Street
• 31g Dragomanova Street
• 2 Dmitrievska Street
• 4 Lavrukhin Street
• glass of fresh brewed beer – 45 UAH/0.5 l
• snacks – from 45 UAH, main meals – from 68 UAH
• average check – about 200 UAH
SHATO is located in the heart of the city – on Khreshchatyk Street, just 200m from the Maidan (Independence Square). The location has influenced both the positioning of the restaurant and its menu. Here, on any day of the week, you can see a large number of foreigners who go to the brewery to have a glass of beer and to taste Ukrainian bacon while they come to see the city. Therefore, the SHATO staff does its best at maintaining the place. For 10 years of its work, the assortment of beer here does not vary. Three basic beer types are available: Silver, Gold and Platinum. All three are light and differ in density and alcohol content. Majority of guests say that Platinum is best one, although this is a matter of taste.
Address: 24 Khreshchatyk Street
• glass of fresh brewed beer – 34 UAH/0.5 l
• snacks – 25-50 UAH, snacks and salads – 50-110 UAH, main meals – from 65 UAH
• average check – about 120-170 UAH
In the Solomenska Brewery, they really try to do their job with the feeling – here you will find delicious fresh brewed beer, extensive menu for every taste and friendly atmosphere.
The most frequent guests of the restaurant are employees of nearby offices (there are also business lunches for them), as well as fans of delicious and unusual beer types who come here from all over the city.
On the menu, you can find both simple snacks (crisps, chips, pork ears) and more sophisticated meals – baked fore hock, steaks, and grill menu. In the evenings, the place is quite crowded, so it’s better to book a table in advance.
Solomenska Brewery permanently offers six beer types – light and refreshing Blond Ale, light with bitter Pilsner, wheat Weissbier, ruby Amber Ale, dense and thick Golden Ale in Belgian style, and dark, almost black Stout (which, however, tastes more like porter). In addition, they often (but not as often as in the Duma, of course) brew experimental and seasonal beer varieties. Such a wide selection of beer is great for large companies – everyone will find something that he likes.
Also, there is a tasting set for doubters. By the way, the chief brewer here is a woman, Oksana Lazarenko, and that is quite unusual.
Address: 2B Solomenska Square
This is PivBar
• glass of fresh brewed beer – 35 UAH/0.5 l
• snacks – from 59 UAH, snacks and salads – 100-150 UAH, main meals – from 75 UAH
• average check – about 200-250 UAH
“This is PivBar” united the best beer traditions. Its main mission is to expand the taste of guests by acquaintance with the peculiarities of the beer culture of different countries. Beer traditions of the Czech Republic, Belgium, Spain, Britain, Germany, the United States and Ukraine are equally respected here.
There are 50 types of draft beer available; you will also find the same number of bottled beer types in the menu. Particular attention is paid to craft drinks, regularly updating and replenishing the range of craft beer available.
• 2B Solomenska Square
• 18 Tymoshenko Street
• 4/2 Trostyanetska Street
The best Kiev bars
In the last two years, a lot of speak easy bars were opened in Kiev and in general the bar culture began to develop actively.
Kiev Cocktails – Top Lounges & Bars
The most atmospheric bars with the most delicious cocktails are as follows:
The most unusual bar of all of the above. The trick is that the guests do not sit still with the glasses in their hands. They move around the halls, equipped with bar counters around the perimeter. The main goal is to make people communicate without gadgets. This is the place where you can and even have to discover new alcoholic mixes.
► Earl Gray Gimlet (cacao nibs infused gin, earl gray liqueur, sugar syrup, lemon juice) – 140 UAH.
► Santiago Punch (pink pepper infused rum, pineapple, lemon, fresh basil) – 160 UAH.
► Chinese Express (tea infused gin, elderflower liqueur, honey, lemon juice) – 140 UAH.
Address: 2a Basseyna Street
Parovoz Speak Easy
One of the few places in the capital that still preserves its status quo. To tell the truth, it does not need any advertising. There are only 42 seats and on the weekends, it is sold-out and full of those who know a lot about quality alcohol and rest.
► New York Sour (Jack Daniel’s, Single Barrel, lemon juice, sugar syrup, Malbec wine, egg white) – 190 UAH.
► Capone (Johnnie Walker Black Label 12 YO, Campari, banana liquor, Quinta dry wine) – 130 UAH.
► Boulevardier (Wild Turkey Bourbon, Campari, Italian sweet vermouth) – 130 UAH.
Address: 19 Velyka Vasylkivska Street
Dogs & Tails
Exclusively American story. The interior reflects the mood of the 20-30-ies: brick walls, columns, high ceilings. However, paintings and slot machines bring the spirit of modernity. The bar menu meets the highest demand. Its variety will satisfy even the most demanding drinker.
► Basil daiquiri (Bacardi Oakheart, ginger syrup, lime juice and basil leaves) – 120 UAH.
► Spicy Rita (cinnamon infused tequila, freshly squeezed lime juice and blue agave puree) – 120 UAH.
► Chartreuse 75 (lime leaves infused gin, and green chartreuse) – 140 UAH.
Address: 19 Shota Rustaveli Street
N :: B Cocktails
Interior design is in the style of the Edo period, the XIX century, when internecine war was taking place in Japan. Many say that N :: B Cocktails Interior can be classified as luxury. In fact, it is a Japanese classic. For the most part, we are not used to it or just do not get it to understand it yet.
Here demanding drinker will find the largest collection of Nikka whiskey that is used to make unique cocktails. However, this does not mean that you have to spend a tidy sum. Along with the Nikka cocktails, the place offers a decent budget alternative.
► № 13 (rum, spicy liqueur, strawberry liqueur, Amargo de Angostura, fresh squeezed lemon juice) – 130 UAH.
► № 3 (calvados, almond liqueur, cherry liqueur, Amargo de Angostura) – 140 UAH.
► Archangel (gin, Aperol, fresh squeezed lemon juice, cane sugar, cucumber slices) – 110 UAH.
Address: 13 Mykhailivs’ka Street
The bar is located in the center of Kiev; however, this place is not so easy to find if you do not know where to go. You certainly will not see a big interesting facade, not even a small sign. The situation is different, because the LoggerHead bar is in a small courtyard behind a large iron door, which must first be knocked. The owners make emphasis on the authenticity of the building, bar art and jazz music.
If you ask my own opinion, I would say it’s the best bar at the moment.
Address: 1 Tarasa Shevchenko Blvd
Alcohol of all sorts on the shelves up to the ceiling and a steel bar stand weighing a couple of tons are in the limelight; this is where Kievans and city guests come to drink and communicate.
Although they promise to add several individual tables. When it comes to food, you can get snacks; but the cocktail menu is truly impressive. The bar is also hidden from prying eyes, so it is better to use the advice of locals to get there.
Address: 44 Khreschatyk Street
This is an unusual bar. It is not as glamorous as the above-mentioned, but it is a must go place if you want something “different”. The main feature of the bar is the performance; they put a helmet on your head, put an alcohol-soaked napkin on it and set it on fire.
As long as your head burns, the bartender knocks on the helmet with your drink, then another and one more. You need to drink all three in turn without pause. After that, the barman will hit your head with a beer barrel. Do not worry; it’s not painful and fun. In addition, the bar is very cheap for both locals and for city guests.
Address: 31A Bulvarno-Kudriavska Street
One more recommendation for budget tourists. The peculiarity of this place is that all you order you get in cans (Ukrainian banka). Yes! You will get not only drinks in cans, but also a salad.
The cocktail menu does not offer luxury alcoholic beverages, and some cocktails may seem strong enough, however, having visited this place you will be 100% cheerful.
Address: 11/61 Lva Tolstoho Street and 13/14 Oleny Telihy Street
The best Kiev nightclubs
D.Fleur works in two formats and only 3 days a week. From 6 pm to 11 pm it is a restaurant with Mediterranean cuisine, and after 12 pm it is a party place with steep parties and great sound. The best art directors and residents of popular clubs on the Azure Coast – Vip Room, Jimmyz, Bagatelle, Nikky Beach and others are responsible for the sound. You will not get inside in sneakers and a rumpled shirt, the place has a dress code.
Address: 3 Mikhail Grushevsky Street
One of the most famous clubs, because it is located in the heart of Kiev night life – in Arena City. Here, you can have dinner, go to a couple of bars, karaoke, strip bars, and then go to the main nightclub of the arena – Sky Bar. The place has face control.
Address: 2a Basseyna Street
In the Caribbean, they welcome everybody, without any exceptions, no matter what your nationality is and what you are wearing; that’s why the guests of club are quite diverse and dressed in rather different styles.
This is the place of fun and good mood, people come here not to show off, but just to relax and dance. The club often has dance and even Latin American music.
Address: 4 Symona Petlyury Street
Closer is unique in its kind, without pathos and vulgar girls. Closer is located on the territory of the former tape factory, and to get here you will have to go through the checkpoint. The place was chosen because of the location not far from the city center and in the green zone. The Art Club occupies the second floor of the building, which the people of Kiev have already nicknamed “The Kremlin” because of the red brick walls. Before the visit, you should definitely call them and find out what is happening on specific day, so as not to find a rehearsal for the Friday concert, the change of Saturday sets or someone else’s corporate party.
Address: 31 Nyzhnoiurkivska Street
There are currently no alternatives to this club in Kiev. If you are beautiful, successful, love high-quality house music and also like to surround yourself with beautiful people, then you should go to CHI. The club is young enough, it’s just over a year. The people who created CHI were always in charge of the nightlife of the city, first in the Arena Nightclub, and then in Touch Café, now in CHI. People who go to CHI are always in one tune. However, recently, apparently because the club is very good, foreigners also learned about this place, but so far the number of foreigners is not very large compared to the Sky bar or the Caribbean Club.
Address: 16 Parkova Road Street
If you are looking for professional girls, check Buddha Bar or Shooters.
To summarize, the average price of a cocktail in a good bar is $7-8, the entrance to a nightclub for men is on average $10-12, for girls is for free as usual. If you go to glamorous places in the city center, don’t forget they all demand dress code.
And one more tip before the Kiev nightlife. Every time before you drink in a bar in Kiev, say «Budmo!» The Ukrainians will understand you. It means
And don’t forget to check my Bar Crawls on www.guideme.com.ua.
About the author. Kate is part of Guide Me, a personal guide to Kiev bars and nightlife. To arrange a pub crawl, contact her at: www.guideme.com.ua