by captain oddsocks
December 19, 2005
Bar Rasputin is the Russian-themed bar beside the small tunnel through the historic water barracks building. It’s small and doesn’t get as rowdy as some of Olomouc’s bars, so it’s a good place to go if you’re with somebody you’d like to talk to as opposed to shout across the table at.
The water barracks is the long low brick building with a grassed roof that also houses Belmondo and the Irish bar. It was an important part of the baroque fortification of Olomouc and is now the one discernible nightlife zone in the city. There are five or six bars side by side here, so it’s not a bad place to start an evening out, because if you don’t like the atmosphere of one, you only have to move next door.
The Russian theme at Rasputin is evinced by the borscht and different varieties of vodka on the menu, the transparent window murals of St. Basil’s cathedral and Rasputin, and the framed orthodox religious prints. The internal walls are painted a deep, dark red, and the arched brick ceiling has been left unplastered. The furniture is a well-chosen mix of wooden tables and chairs and upholstered sofas and armchairs. Some of the high-backed armchairs are quite dramatic, the kind that you see turned to the wall in films from the '70s while the evil mastermind plots the demise of the film’s hero.
Rasputin also has a good outdoor seating area for the summer months. Alongside the walls of the old brewery on Mlynská Ulice, it’s not close to any residential buildings and therefore has permission to stay open later than many of the other outdoor beer gardens, which must close at 10pm to comply with noise restrictions. Sitting outside also makes it apparent how they can offer a range of pizzas and pastas, without having space for a kitchen. Every so often, you’ll see a barman leave Rasputin and trot two doors along to Captain Morgan’s. After a few moments, he’ll reappear with a couple of pizza boxes in his hands and scurry back towards Rasputin.
The pizzas are good and their prices comparable with what you might pay elsewhere in the centre. The prices range for 67-139Kc for topped pizzas, but the best value for money on the menu is the garlic bread for 29Kc. The garlic bread consists of a pizza base with at least five or six large cloves of garlic sliced up and baked on top. Delicious, but not for those who are averse to smelling like garlic for the next day or so. The borscht is also delicious and excellent value at 34Kc. The beer is Gambrinus (22kc/half-litre) and Pilsner (29.5Kc/half-litre).
Rasputin is open from 11am to 1am on weekdays and 3pm to 1am on weekends.
From journal Nightlife in Olomouc L-Z