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“Truly amazing place!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Russian Samovar

Russian Samovar
256 W 52nd St, New York City, NY 10019 (Midtown)
+1 212-757-0168
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Ranked #1,339 of 11,186 Restaurants in New York City
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $31 - $53
Cuisines: Russian, Eastern European
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighborhood: Midtown
Cross street: Broadwy & 8th
Transit: 50 St (A, C, E) 50 St (1, 2) 7 Av (B, D, E)
Aguadilla, Puerto Rico
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Truly amazing place!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2013

My family, a party of 6, visited the Russian Samovar for the second time on the night of September 21, and what a memorable night it was! There was live music, two singers and a violinist. They sang russian songs as well as popular american, brazilian, and italian ones. They also take requests which is nice. Let me start by saying that the PINEAPPLE vodka is absolutely delicious, it's just the right amount of sweet, my family loved it (a tough crowd to please). The food was scrumptious! Beautifully served, and tasted amazing. We had the duck, the lamb, fish, and the beef, so it's safe to say that almost everything on the menu is worth trying for how yummy it was. The service at the Russian Samovar was impeccable, lovely people serving there, it was a true pleasure to be served by them, especially our waiter Luna. The place was packed on a Saturday night, so reservations are recommended. It was truly an enjoyable experience, you cannot go wrong by visiting this place. Aleksandr had to be right when he took Carrie here!!! We are all yearning to return again soon.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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140 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    69
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Jose, CA
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Not just food but an experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2013

My family comes from Russia two generations back so I was curious to see if this was tourist Russian food or Russian Russian food - it's either Russian Russian food or the chef learned to cook with my grandmother.

Unable to choose among the appetizers, we decided to have a a meal of appetizers. Round one was the foie Gras (not really anything I'd associate with Russian food, but we're from California and we can't get it in restaurants any more) and the Pan Fried Potatoes with Wild Mushrooms. Round two was potato vareniki (pirogies), meat blinchika (crepes), and potato pancakes with home made sour cream (which I put on everything).

Russian cooks elevate the potato to the sublime and in the potato toika - the Pan Fried Potatoes were the winner, but only by a hair because they were all excellent. Did I mention there were only two of us eating these 5 appetizers? Oh and the bread is like nothing we get in California. Sour dough can only take you so far.

Skipping any entre we shared 3 desserts: apple strudel, medovik (honey cake) and the inaptly named chocolate rum balls. The rum balls were basically a pretty large log of rich cocolate rum truffle covered with chocolate ganache, drizzled with some icing and topped with sprinkles. as a small candy it would have been rich - as a big log i cried uncle. My husband at the whole thing.

the apple strudel, I'm sorry to say, did not hold a candle to my grandmother's but it was quite good anyway. But the Medovik was devine - managing to be perfectly light and sweet at the same time.

The experience came from the piano player and the other diners, who sang along, made requests bopped their heads and clapped to the music, enough to be infectious but not enough to overpower the excellent singing and piano playing. It made the whole evening so much fun.

Whether you're re-visiting your youth or trying a new type of food - the Russian Samovar got both me and my husband trying to rearrange the rest of our week's plans so we can go back.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“The best atmosphere and food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013

Just go there and feel like at home. Thank you, Mr. Baryshnikov, for such a wonderful place. Very good authentic Russian cuisine and ambiance. Tea like in the train, pelmeny, like at mother's home and people like in Old Russia.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maryland
Top Contributor
231 reviews 231 reviews
101 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 69 cities Reviews in 69 cities
99 helpful votes 99 helpful votes
“Nice cozy restaurant in NYC”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2013

We went to the Russian Samovar on a Saturday evening prior to our broad way show. The restaurant is small and quaint (my daughter loved the décor). The servers were attentive and friendly. We ordered two appetizers dolma and the pelemeni. We did not like the dolma only because we did not like the grape leaves but, the meat inside was very good. The pelemeni on the other hand was terrific. My husband ordered the braised short ribs which he said were ok maybe cooked too much. I ordered the chicken kiev and my daughter ordered the duck both of these meals I would highly recommend.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brussels, Belgium
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“Good Place to enjoy a drink and meet regulars”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2013

The place is amazing, the bar tenders are friendly and will make you feel that you know them forever.

The cocktails and alcoholic beverages there are perfect. The service is excellent.
The music is different from normal bars, there is also a Russian pianist and singer which is nice.

I did not try the food, but the people next to me really enjoyed their meals.

The bar is big, a lot of Russians in the bar, so it helps if you speak the language.

If I go to New York, this will be a must go place to drink.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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