Bars and pubs

The 2-storey Shustry Shmel (‘the Nimble Bumblebee’) pub and brasserie provides beer that can fit any taste: the latest Russian craft beer brands and the classical imported sorts.  There are 35 taps here and over 200 kinds of bottled beer and ale from all around the world.

The first floor has a chamber pub with a long bar stand. Here, one is offered the classical bar snacks to go along with the beer: olives, nuts and nachos.

In the basement, guests may enjoy the small comfortable tables for couples and the large tables for big companies, as well as a wall-sized screen for sports broadcasting. The brasserie has a full-fledged kitchen, where beer sets are prepared: breast ribs, salads, burritos. The menu is organised in such a way that the snacks should be in perfect harmony with the sort of beer you choose.

Shustry Shmel hosts tasting of new brands and meetings with brewers from Nizhny Novgorod and other Russian regions, as well as craft beer festivals. You can learn about all the events on the pub’s social media pages.

This bar recreates the ambience of a 1950s American bar with its semi-darkness, heavy leather furniture, portraits of Albert Einstein and Frank Sinatra on the wall, low tables laid with crackly linen napkins, a small mixed menu (bruschettas, sandwiches, tar-tars), and long drinks, mixed by just about the best bar staff in town. Franky calls itself a cocktail bar. If you pay them a visit, you should probably try their Rat Pack cocktail, which is quite popular with the local crowd. 

If you’re on your own and feeling lonely, sit at the bar to hear some mesmerizing drink-mixing stories from the bartender. For breakfast, you get to choose between English, Mediterranean and Middle Eastern, but the Russian staples – hot oatmeal, omelette and syrniki – are also on offer.

In this prim English restaurant, the pride of place belongs to the bar, manned by some of the best professionals in town. Although this is technically a pub, whole families come here for dinner. There is a kids’ offering on the menu, and a playroom upstairs. Of note is the heavy, massive furniture in this place, artificially aged portraits of Hollywood actors on the walls, and faux antique porcelain plates, on which the English pub classics arrive: shepherd’s pie, steaks, fish’n’chips and ha.m.. In the morning, the ample English breakfast includes heaps of beans, sausages, potatoes, and all kinds of things imaginable. 

With a breakfast like this, who needs lunch? The servings are generous here, and all kinds of promotions and specials are offered all the time. At one point, visitors were asked to collect stickers to win an all-expenses-paid trip to Europe. English Embassy will turn its TV on for major sports events.

This tumultuous British style pub stresses music, as it name suggests. It also offers the customary pub grub at egalitarian prices: sausages, Irish stew, spareribs, and the like. You are supposed to wash it all down with a strong stout, but if beer is not your poison of choice, there is a huge cocktail list with nearly a hundred entries. The place is loud, concerts and DJ parties run nonstop, football fans congregate in droves (surprisingly, everyone seems to be on their best behaviour). One promotion or another is always on at Union Jack, e.g. half off your second pint. 

The interior décor is the classic Russian take on a British pub. Unnecessary but cute “English” element abounds. One example is the red payphone booth.

This loud two-story bar is a local landmark. It’s usually packed with tourists, expats and trendy young locals, dancing to resident or guest DJ sets. The fun never ends as long as the fuel keeps flowing – the traditional and innovative long drinks, created by Beryozka bar staff, who have excelled at the Moscow Bar Show more than once. The food is not so creative. The menu does list the international fail-safe favourites, but Russian food is markedly emphasized. You find pork chops, golubtsi, Murmansk cod, buckwheat kasha with mushrooms, and jellied meat alongside Greek salad and sushi rolls.

Beryozka runs drink-mixing workshops every Wednesdays. It’s strictly hands-on, so everyone attending takes home some recipes and skills to try out on their guests, bragging that he learned to mix drinks at Main Bar on Main Street. This is how Beryozka staff refer to their bar.