Xpat Review: 101 Bistro in Budapest

  • 18 Apr 2023 6:18 AM
Xpat Review: 101 Bistro in Budapest
By Peterjon Cresswell for XpatLoop. Cosying up beside fellow gastro hot-spots transforming the character of Buda’s busiest crossing point, Széll Kálmán tér, the 101 Bistro has won over the uptown crowd thanks to its stand-out dishes designed for sharing.

Avoiding well-trodden culinary paths drearily leading from the Far East to Budapest, this self-styled ‘Taiwanese bistro for the curious’ constantly seeks to pique the interest of regular and first-time diner alike.

A concise but enticing evening menu divides its primary focus between bao and small plates, the former filled with beef shortrib and pork belly, the latter featuring char siu pork shoulder and shou pa chicken.

Meats are succulently moreish, satisfyingly sating your appetite while leaving room for the recommended side of lard rice, crowned with mangalica lardo.

Chilled Sichuan lettuce and san bei aubergine should perk up vegetarians jaded by tofu, and inventive additions frequently pop up on the bistro’s Facebook page.

Dishes arrive together thanks to a personable English-speaking waitstaff happy to point out, say, the Meyer lemon used for emulsion alongside the superb squid toast, chunky rather than cracker-crisp in form.

Select desserts feature a tangy Chinese mandarin sorbet with jasmin and Castillo de Canena olive oil, while the extensive drinks list of nine highballs, six cocktails and four types of sake keeps things Oriental, with its Yangmei Spritz and Sakura Milk Punch.

It all takes place in an intimate setting, with no interfering background music – here the spotlight is on food and conversation. Daytime visitors can tuck into the lunch menu (weekdays noon-3.30pm) of gaifan, noodles and a sample of small plates and sweets.

101Bistro, 1024 Budapest, Széll Kálmán tér 5 (+36 70 610 8101). Open Mon-Sat noon-3.30pm, 5pm-10pm, Sun noon-8pm.

By Peterjon Cresswell for XpatLoop.com
Peterjon Cresswell has been researching the bars and byways of Budapest for 30 years, extending his expertise across Europe to produce guidebooks for Time Out and his own website, liberoguide.com, focusing on football culture and the drinking around it.

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