Birštonas locals and visitors select the resort’s most delicious dishes

2019/05/31 Press release

The month of May in the resort of Birštonas has been dedicated to the presentation of gastronomic novelties and the selection of the most delicious dish. 

With the arrival of summer, most of the resort’s catering establishments are changing their menus. The traditional culinary competition has been held. It was different this year as dishes presented for the competition were assessed not by a panel of culinary professionals but café and restaurant goers.  

Nine different categories of dishes

Seven catering establishments took part in the Birštonas culinary competition. They presented dishes in nine different categories for their customers’ appraisal. The Royal SPA Residence hotel-restaurant offered to try a catfish with hot salad, oranges and carrot cream.

“This new dish has many characteristics of the Lithuanian cuisine but also features the ideas of the European style. Certainly, the highlight of the dish is a catfish, which has long been fished in the Nemunas river, even off the shores of Birštonas,” said Daiva Saulienė, a chef at Royal SPA Residence. 

The dish presented in the competition by the MOON restaurant of the Vytautas Mineral SPA complex was roast lamb. According to the restaurant’s chef Darius Dabrovolskas, the main feature of this product is special lamb from New Zealand. The meat is marinated for a short time to preserve its structure and unique taste and is garnished in a traditional manner with a fragrant broth sauce, chickpeas and raw vegetables.

The Old Town Grill restaurant offered two dishes – grilled matured beef cut and a tiramisu dessert prepared in a unique way. The restaurant’s chef Mantas Rudžionis was said: “A good restaurant is not about nice premises. You need excellent cooking utensils and skilful hands to handle them as well as having a passion, ideas and love for what you are doing”. This philosophy is reflected in the restaurant’s many dishes, with an aspiration for unexpected solutions and a combination of tastes. 

The customers were also offered to try a beet sorbet of the Audenis hotel-café, Cielas ešerys, a novelty of the hamburger bar Bir. Bur. Bar, the most favourable sushi of the Sušinė café, and two summer dishes of the Saulės Terasa – a curd dessert and sangria. 

A special electronic voting system was used to cast votes for favourite dishes and comments were shared on social media. Among those who voted were not Lithuanians alone but also visitors from foreign countries such as Ireland, Italy, Germany, Sweden, the USA, the United Arab Emirates, and Thailand. 

The winner of the competition won more than half of votes  

According to the voting results, the matured beef cut Brandinta Jautienos Išpjova of the Old Town Grill restaurant was announced the absolute winner of the competition. It collected 53% of votes. The tiramisu dessert Dekonstruotas Tiramisu of the same restaurant came second with 43% of votes. The third place was shared by two dishes, which collected the similar amount of votes – lamb roast by the MOON restaurant (23%) and a catfish by Royal SPA Residence (22%).  

About 30 catering spots will be operating in Birštonas this summer, from pavement cafes to luxury restaurants. The chefs of these catering establishments are convinced that the quality of food on offer in Birštonas is increasing every year, with restaurants including in their menus extraordinary and exciting novelties. Many café and restaurant goers are well travelled and experienced gastro-tourists, therefore, it takes a lot of efforts to impress them. Culinary novelties are created taking into account the desires of customers and embracing the best international experience, the philosophy of the seasonal cuisine as well as ecological ideas. Very soon these gastro-tourism novelties of Birštonas will find their place in the Birštonas culinary map drawn up every year. This map has been helping to discover the new tastes of the resort for the third year in a row. 

Birštonas is a unique Lithuanian resort situated in the loops of the River Nemunas. Up to 90% of Birštonas municipality is located in the territory of the Nemunas Loops Regional Park, and the mineral water extracted from the underground is the key factor promoting the existence and growth of the resort of Birštonas. 

The unique natural resources and exceptional landscape of the locality have long attracted tourists to visit Birštonas and its surroundings. The green woods in the loops of Nemunas remind of royal hunting, when the sound of the bugle of Vytautas the Great in Žvėrinčius Forest called the members of the then royal families of Europe.  

Birštonas is a Lithuanian resort offering international wellness services. It is famous for its unique nature, the Nemunas Loops, mineral waters and the royal origin. The resort is abundant with natural resources: gushing mineral water springs, therapeutic mud, clean air and salubrious climate. The resort prides itself on its mineral water, which is rich in bromine and recognised and valued throughout Europe.