The Black Bull, Golden Tiger & Other Famous Pubs
Authentic Czech pubs are vintage places with basic old wooden picnic tables, ancient wood floors and are as smoky as a barbecue pit. They appear as if they’ve been around as long as the Charles Bridge. As do some of the patrons.
Most Czech bars can be identified from the street by a “Bud Var” sign out front; this means it serves Budveiser, the original Czech beer. These are the most common bars in Prague and are on practically every corner.
Some of these bars are very small and local. So try and act as if you’ve been there before. That means take a quick survey of any open table or seats, confidently stroll over there and make eye contact with the waiter to order a beer.
If a spot is reserved, as may be the case if people are seated at a table, keep moving. Sometimes even out of the bar.
Thankfully, this potential game of musical picnic tables doesn’t come into play at the biggest and best of these Czech bars, U Vejuodu, though the waiters certainly seem as if they prefer Czechs to tourists. As much of a restaurant as a bar, its has creaky wood floors, an arched ceiling and a kettle pot over the bar.
With a sizable main bar, large space in the back and even a room to the side, it’s really too large and lively to be considered a true locals’ Czech pub, but it’s got the right look and feel. The plasma TVs showing music videos give it a modern touch.
For a touch of history, U Medvidku is where Mozart drank. Heavily. That’s because it is located steps behind his residence (his sculpture is on the building).
Locations: Both are in what we call “the Mozart area” meaning they are around the corner from Mozart’s place. U Medvka is on Narodni, which connects to the Mosi-Legi bridge (the one with the island). U Vejudodu is on a small side street, Jilska.
Across the Vltava River, not far from the Prague Castle, is as authentic a Czech pub as can be found in Prague. The Black Bull – or U Cernacho Vola – has just a half-dozen tables and what PubClub.com believes to be the best beer in the city. Certainly it’s among the most potent.
Finding it is a trick and it serves to really build up one’s thirst; it’s down from the castle across from a pair of “No Pezi Zone” signs. This is is a favorite spot of the Czech national hockey team coach.
Location: Lorent‡nskŽ Street, near the Prague Castle.
U Zlateho Tygra, or the Golden Tiger, is the most recognized authentic Czech bar in Prague. Yet we don’t recommend it and it’s only mentioned here to counter encouragement from others.
Right off Old Town Square this is one of the stay-away bars; you walk in and get the cold stare of locals and staff who don’t like non-Czech people invading their turf.
It’s like that scene in the movie Animal House when the Faber College folks walk into the bar with Otis Day and the Nights. At the Golden Tiger, the same thought comes to mind: “Leaving, what a good idea!”