Hungarian Restaurants in Budapest

Many tourists want to try traditional Hungarian foods and wines at an authentic Hungarian restaurant. But what is an authentic Hungarian Restaurant like? As for authentic Hungarian restaurant, in our experience tourists usually have 2 kinds of ‘authentic Hungarian’ in mind, so it is really up to you which you would personally prefer.
One of them is the colourful and noisy Hungarian restaurants with lots of gypsy music, while the other is a narrower definition, meaning traditional Hungarian foods in a nice setting, no Gypsy music, or folk entertainments. To be honest, the Gypsy music restaurants are usually quite touristy, and ‘authentic’ for tourists only, but not for us locals.
Borsso Bistro - Hungarian restaurant in Budapest

BorsSo Bistro – Hungarian restaurant in Budapest

Top Hungarian restaurants in Budapest

These are some of the best reviewed restaurants in Budapest offering mostly Hungarian cuisine. Note: several of the restaurants are not exclusively Hungarian, they offer international cuisine as well.

Hungarian

Rakoczi Restaurant and Eatery Budapest

Rakoczi Restaurant and Eatery Budapest

Really authentic Hungarian cuisine

The most authentic Hungarian cuisine is the art of Hungarian housewives and men who cook at home (like my granddad). The best place to find authentic Hungarian meals is to pick a lunch place called eatery (etkezde).

We have not included eateries in our Hungarian Restaurant list, as these are not serving you meals with waiting staff as restaurants do, but read on for more great tips.
Etkezde is a highly popular place to eat where locals flock at midday to grab a nice and very reasonably priced lunch. Why not tell the truth? These are cheap places with lunch menu deals. So you can even sample more dishes at a low cost.
Mind you, these are not restaurants but more like self services places where you grab a tray, point at what you want (for lack of English speaking staff, mostly), and sit down to eat, maybe sharing the table with others. See our Budget Dining Budapest Map for the best eateries, self service restaurants, streetfood grabs and cheap restaurants.
Apart from eateries, there are some nice restaurants, where truly authentic Hungarian meals are served at higher prices, and in a pleasant setting in the city centre (mostly French bistro interior with a Hungarian flavour). Some places you may like
  • Muzeum Restaurant (old world charm) close to Astoria  and the National Museum
  • Belvarosi Lugas Restaurant behind the St Stephen’s Basilica, downtown Budapest: reasonable prices, pleasant, somewhat retro design
  • Tigris Restaurant in Merleg street: posh restaurant, high prices, highly rated meals and service.
  • BorsSo Restaurant in Kiralyi Pal Street in downtown Budapest: nice, light, French style restaurant for its design, Hungarian for its dishes
  • Ruben Restaurant by Karoly Garden, a nice little park, at 12 Magyar Street, a short walk from Astoria: modern, contemporary design, no thrill, nice service, good prices
  • Kiskakukk Restaurant not far from Margaret Bridge on the Pest side. A historical Hungarian restaurant with an interior of an apartment
  • etc.
Gundel Restaurant, Budapest Hungary

Gundel Restaurant Hungarian cuisine in Budapest

In general, you could try and enjoy Hungarian foods and wines at Bock Bistro (close to Oktogon Square), 21 Restaurant in the Castle District, or one of the Hungarian gourmet menus of the Michelin starred restaurants (Onyx is in the heart of the city).
 Most tourists are staying in Budapest quite centrally (there are lots of 4-5 star hotels in downtown Budapest) with lots of great restaurants in the neighbourhood. However, many of them has no exclusively or partly Hungarian cuisine where you could try traditional Hungarian meals.
The Gypsy music – folk dance restaurant idea was pushed mainly in Hungarian films, and foreign films about Hungary, i.e. in tourism. But featuring 2-5 talented Gypsy musicians playing lively or melancholic Hungarian music – for tips in your ears directly – and putting red and white checkered table cloths on the tables does not equal with a really authentic Hungarian restaurant, especially not in Budapest. These are our subjective views from TopBudapest.org, so views may differ.
 
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