Discovering the world, one bite at a time!

Second Time Lucky

How many throw cushions does a cushion thrower throw when a cushion thrower throws throw cushions?

That head-scratcher came to mind when I took a seat upstairs at Vinyl & Wood, a funky double storey cafe specialising in tasty coffee, soundtracked by even funkier music. Scaling the steep stairs you are greeted with wall art and some twenty cushions, an amount that seems excessive to me. Realistically how much lumbar support does one need?

I had heard great reviews about this place last time I was here but didn’t visit, dismissing it as one of those try-too-hard cafes that are on every second street corner. My mistake.

The food options were limited but everything I tried was scrumptious and left me wanting to return for another hit of coffee/pastry. The usual suspects of a hassle-free European breakfast in the cabinet – croissants, handmade sandwiches with cured meats, handmade apple pie and even a quiche for those that need their egg fix. The turntable was nowhere to be seen, the vinyl replaced by a laptop. I can vouch for the “Wood” in the title however with phone cases, wallets, pendants and even bowties available for purchase all made from timber.

Let’s hope the bowties are made out of cypress pine, it would be embarrassing to sport one at a friend’s wedding only to see half your wardrobe being gnawed away by termites during the reception.

Two cups of Americano (the closest thing resembling a long black) and a pistachio croissant all for the bargain price of $7 AUD. Racking my brain to work out the last time I had a croissant and the best I could come up with was five years ago. The pistachio spread seemed to be a mixture of nuts, sugar and butter. I think I may need another five years to recover from all that buttery goodness. The coffee was worth a revisit.

Across the street was my favourite restaurant from last visit, Getto Gulyas. A medium to high end place which served up one of my most memorable feeds. Last year I ordered five dishes and have since discovered you can opt for a Daily Chefs Offer (three set courses, set price, menu changes every day) for a fraction of what I forked twelve months ago.

I am not au fait with many Hungarian words but I was with the term Turo Csusza even though I have never had the good fortune to experience a plate. It is a Hungarian staple and translates to “cheese pasta”. Much like the way that Australians wouldn’t go out and order penne with a simple tomato sauce, it is rare to see this on many menus in these parts so I was excited that it has made the menu today. I had no idea what the others words translated to but I knew one was a soup/stew and the other some form of dessert. The week’s menu is below, Pentek is Friday.

Out of the gate comes the babgulyas (bean goulash). The waiter comes out with a small bucket which held exactly enough to fill my bowl but he got me nervous swinging it around as if he was trying to convince me centrifugal force exists. That stuff is loaded with paprika so get a drop of that gear on you, you can kiss your white clothes goodbye. The bread basket made its first appearance, I needed two pieces to mop up what was a hearty opener.

My linguistics assumption proved correct as the empty first course bowl was whisked away and promptly replaced by the pasta dish. Incredibly simplistic pure comfort food, pasta with cheese curd topped with a sprinkling of bacon bits. If they sold this on their regular menu I would go back everyday until my passport expires.

To round out lunch was palacsinta (crepes) which had a dusting of cocoa between. Not sweet, fairly bitter. Overall $8 AUD for three courses made me a happy man and a happy man is a good tipper.

That’s two meals within three hours so the remainder of daylight hours were spent over on the Buda side of the river, taking in the castles, churches and other historical structures.

Much like Prague last year the amount of people clamouring for the perfect photo was off-putting. At one stage a professional model (red dress) was trying to pose for some shots with a group of large dogs but the sheer amount of people made it an impossible task. If one of the dogs attacked the odd tourist or six I would have turned a blind eye.

I did try to take the odd decent photo during my 8km trek, putting my new phone through its paces.
Last time in Budapest I was unable to get to the Pinball Museum (Flippermuzeum) as it was shut so this time I made sure to pencil it in. It opened at 4PM and shut at 12AM, eight hours of free play pinball fun. There is close to 150 machines in the collection dating back to the 1940s through to the high tech new machines that have just rolled off the production line.

I thought there would be a handful of enthusiasts and myself but the crowd would have been pushing fifty in number. I didn’t realise that the 1970’s was essentially a music/pinball branding exercise. It was a roll call of the heavy hitters of music. KISS, Elton John’s, The Rolling Stones, The Beatles and The Who all have been immortalised.

The old timey machines of the 50’s are a far cry from the thousands of bells and whistles on the machines now. A super impressive collection which I am glad I was able to experience (and play) on the second time around.

Eight hours is a long time to be standing especially after my exploration earlier in the day. When I made it home that night, the shower got a fair workout.

I forfeited dinner, however I did sneak in a gelato before the flipper fest. Rosa Gelato, famous for their unique presentation. Three flavours for $3.50 AUD. Peanut butter with wasabi, passionfruit and pistachio were my selections. The gelato was ready but my combination was a mismash of flavours. The standout was the peanut butter/wasabi.
Until next time, keep chewing.


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This blog started life as a series of emails with poor quality photography to family and friends whilst overseas to let them know I was still breathing.  It has since grown into it’s own little part of the internet.  A place where I ramble on about my love of travel and food.  Hopefully you find some enjoyment and inspiration out of it for future travel plans.  I have got a buzz from seeing it evolve into this flurry of pixels. 

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