The St. Petersburg dining scene is beginning to see some excellent international restaurants opening. Spoiled oligarchs tend to dismiss their native borscht and Stroganoff, instead preferring Italian cuisine and sushi. The hot spots of London, New York and St. Tropez have inspired their décor and their menus as well as the haughty attitude of many of their wait staff.
There are a few great restaurants featuring Russian classics such as Tsar, and so-called “Soviet-chic” cafés like The Idiot, preferred by hip twenty-somethings. Haute-cuisine hotel eateries like Percorso and restaurants, like Mansarda and Terrassa, bring a chic, modern aesthetic to St. Petersburg. You will see the word ‘pectopah’, meaning restaurant, on the front of most establishments, but be aware this is a Cyrillic word (it sounds out ‘resto-ran’), and the letters are just recognizable in English.