Eating out for cheapskates in Kraków: Part I, Soup Festival

Kraków soup festival happens once a year, towards the end of May (Sunday 25 this year). I had trouble finding anything about it in English on the internet, so I thought it could do with a mention here. After all, even Anglophones should have equal opportunities to access free food. Soup for all I say!

The soup festival takes place in late May and it is based in the Kazimierz area of Kraków (the old Jewish Quarter, for those of you who aren’t in the know), and the basic idea is that lots of restaurants and cafes produce their own special recipe soup and compete to win the golden spoon. This year’s winner was a cool watermelon and mint concoction from a restaurant named “Tesoro del Mar”.

Meanwhile, everyone queues up in Plac Nowy for soup served from old military tanks while Kabaret distracts them from the art of keeping soup in bowl and on spoon. Cue soup slopped on ties everywhere.

This is what I wrote about the event on Pinolona last year:

On Saturday afternoon I went to Plac Nowy for a taste of Eastern bloc life in the soup queues at the Kazimierz soup festival. The soup stands themselves were hidden by the crowds, so I (rather foolishly) went with mob rule and planted myself at the end of the longest queue. As I had already discovered at the pharmacy, queueing here is an entirely different sport. One person usually equals five plus a pushchair, and any amount of that indignant humphing- which characterises the stereotypical British single-file version- will go unnoticed.

After about half an hour, I managed to procure myself a bowl of (actually delicious) thick, yellow soup.

Queuing was an easy game compared to the task of finding an empty space at a trestle table without slopping any soup out of the flimsy plastic dish it was served in.

An interesting weekend altogether. I may not have achieved total cultural enlightenment, but I got free food, which is the second quest the eternal student.

This year I thought I’d get smart and avoid the queues by targeting one of the outlying cafes in the vicinity of Plac Nowy.

No dice. No sooner did I reach the end of Wąska when I was faced with a mass of people lined (in the loosest sense of the world) up outside Fabryka Pizzy. I would have gone further in my search, but the pizza smell was too much for me. Plus you get a free stick of warm pizza dough with the soup… it’s virtually like eating a pizza but cheating on the health side of things because everyone knows soup is a diet food.

After around twenty minutes (of eavesdropping on the girl students behind me and trying to surreptitiously take photos without anyone noticing and taking objection) in the queue, Fabryka Pizzy served up a fetching two-tone pea and tomato krem (thick puree-like soup) and a warm stick of pizza dough to mop it up with. Mmm, pizza dough…

soupy carnage

The things we do for free food.

Buying powdered soup and passing it off as your own is cheating and Polandian would never condone this behaviour.

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One thought on “Eating out for cheapskates in Kraków: Part I, Soup Festival

  1. […] report from the Kraków soup festival – at Polandian. Posted by Veronica Khokhlova Share […]

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