A Friendly Travel Guide to Restaurants in Armenia
Embarking on a culinary adventure in Armenia is an experience you won’t soon forget. The country’s rich and diverse cuisine is rooted in its long history and is influenced by the flavors of the Caucasus, Middle East, and the Mediterranean. In this guide, we’ll explore some of the best restaurants in Armenia that will take your taste buds on a delightful journey. Bon appétit, or as the Armenians say, “Bari akhord!”
1. Yerevan – The Capital City’s Culinary Gems
Located in the heart of Yerevan, Dolmama is one of the most popular and iconic restaurants in the city. Renowned for its warm atmosphere and traditional Armenian cuisine, Dolmama offers a range of delicious dishes, including their signature dolma (stuffed grape leaves) and khorovats (Armenian barbecue). Enjoy your meal in the charming dining area or on the outdoor terrace with a beautiful view of the city.
Sherep, meaning “cooking pot” in Armenian, is a must-visit in Yerevan. With an open kitchen where you can watch the chefs work their magic, Sherep offers a wide array of authentic Armenian dishes prepared with fresh, local ingredients. Be sure to try their khashlama, a delicious meat and vegetable stew, or their mouthwatering manti, traditional Armenian dumplings.
2. Gyumri – A Taste of Armenia’s Second City
Located in Gyumri, the second-largest city in Armenia, Cherkezi Dzor is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Known for its fresh fish dishes and warm, friendly atmosphere, Cherkezi Dzor offers a unique dining experience. Don’t miss their signature trout cooked in clay pots, as well as their wide range of Armenian salads and appetizers.
Poloz Mukuch is a historic restaurant in Gyumri, housed in a beautiful 19th-century building. This cozy eatery serves traditional Armenian dishes with a modern twist, and their menu changes seasonally to showcase the freshest ingredients. Be sure to try their tender lamb khorovats and the homemade lavash (Armenian flatbread) accompanied by an assortment of cheeses and herbs.
3. Dilijan – A Foodie’s Paradise in a Picturesque Setting
Flying Ostrich by Dolmama
Nestled in the lush forests of Dilijan National Park, the Flying Ostrich by Dolmama is the sister restaurant to the iconic Dolmama in Yerevan. This charming restaurant offers the same high-quality Armenian dishes with a stunning backdrop. Enjoy a leisurely meal on their outdoor terrace, where you can take in the breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.
Haykanoush is a delightful family-owned restaurant in Dilijan, offering a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Serving home-cooked Armenian meals, this eatery is a great place to sample traditional dishes like tolma (stuffed vegetables) and khash, a hearty soup made from cow’s feet. Don’t forget to try their famous gata, a sweet Armenian pastry, for dessert!
4. Sevan – Lakeside
Dining with Spectacular Views
Located on the shores of the stunning Lake Sevan, Tsovatsots offers a picturesque dining experience. This lakeside restaurant serves a range of fresh seafood dishes, as well as traditional Armenian cuisine. Try their signature Sevan crayfish, grilled to perfection, and enjoy the panoramic views of the lake and surrounding mountains.
Restaurant Ashot Erkat
Another popular dining option by Lake Sevan, Restaurant Ashot Erkat is known for its delicious food and friendly service. This family-run establishment offers a variety of Armenian dishes, including local favorites like khorovats and lavash. Be sure to sample their smoked fish, a specialty of the region, while enjoying the beautiful views of the lake.
5. Goris – Discovering the Flavors of Southern Armenia
Mirhav Hotel Restaurant
Mirhav Hotel Restaurant is a hidden gem in the southern Armenian town of Goris. This cozy eatery offers a taste of authentic Armenian cuisine, using fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. Their menu includes a variety of traditional dishes, such as kyufta (meatballs) and jingalov hats, a delicious herb-stuffed flatbread. The charming atmosphere and attentive service make this a must-visit spot in Goris.
Located in the heart of Goris, Restaurant Loby offers a diverse menu featuring both Armenian and international dishes. The welcoming atmosphere and friendly staff make it an ideal spot for a relaxing meal. Don’t miss their flavorful khorovats, which pairs perfectly with a glass of local Armenian wine.
With this guide, you’re now ready to explore the diverse and delicious world of Armenian cuisine. From the bustling capital city of Yerevan to the serene shores of Lake Sevan, each region offers unique flavors and unforgettable dining experiences. So pack your bags, bring your appetite, and let the culinary adventure begin!