I had a wonderful meal at Pasanauri in Tbilisi recently. I am a cook and cookbook writer and know a fair amount about Georgian food and am fussy about quality ethnic food when I travel. I hate watered down, tourist-versions of dishes, and usually spend a fair amount of time looking for food I will like. My guide recommended Pasanauri as a place that he would go to with his family. That was good enough for me. It is conveniently located just past the Academy of Sciences off of Rustaveli Avenue, and is convenient for travelers.
It is a small place with ten large booths and about five tables for two-to-four depending on the squeeze factor. The décor is simple, something along the lines of an English pub or tavern, but don't let that put you off - the food is good. The night I was there, I was the only traveler in house, everyone else around me was Georgian as far as I could tell.
I had a glass of the red Shumi to get me in the mood for food. Though it was a house wine, it was still quite good. The main course was veal with tomatoes in a clay dish. As expected, it was served sizzling and I had to gaze at it for a few minutes before I tucked in. It was very good, mildly spiced and perfectly cooked. As an accompanying dish I ordered the sulguni cheese in a clay dish - which is another Georgian specialty. When it cooled enough to eat, I sopped some up with a crisp on the outside, but soft and delicious on the inside, fresh Georgian bread. I also ordered two of the famous sauces, the azhika and the tekmali - both of which were superb. Pasanauri's azhika was moderately hot with a lot of tomato and mustard and was different from many versions of the sauce I have had. Their tekmali was also unique, with a lot more lemon flavor to it than usual - but it worked with the sour plums and was really wonderful!
The Georgians around me were ordering large plates of khinkali dumplings or clay-dish meals and were enjoying the food and the time-out spent together.
The menu is in Georgian and English which is a plus for international travelers, and the food is authentic, not-touristy, and reasonably priced. I highly recommend Pasanauri to everyone, but especially to those wishing to experience real Georgian food while in Tbilisi.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.