Food Review: ‘Made From The Heart’ Brněnský Piknik In Lužánky Park
The third ‘Brněnský Piknik’ organised by Radio Petrov took place in Lužánky park last Saturday. Around 20 food and drink stalls were arranged behind the ŠVČ centre and seating and attractions spread out into the park. It showed that the street and specialist food scene in Brno is thriving. Our food editor went along to check it out. Photo credit: Charles du Parc.
Brno, Jun 20 (BD) – Having missed out on the previous two events, I wasn’t sure what to expect from the third Brněnský Piknik. What I found was some of the tastiest food that Brno has to offer in the relaxed setting of Lužánky.
THE MAIN COURSE
I made first for the Pasta Truck as I had wanted to try their pasta for ages but always seemed to miss them. The pasta is homemade, indeed ‘made from the heart’ ; you have a choice of 5 sauces which you can combine with any of the types of fresh pasta they offer. I chose fusilli with the gorgonzola, parmezan and walnut cream sauce. The pasta threatened to fall apart as you bit into it, but with enough of a bite in the centre to hold the sauce.
Next I sampled the pork quesadilla (there was also a veggie version) from Roburrito. Good Mexican food has been hard to find in Brno, but this is changing.The quesadilla hit all the right spots.The tortilla was the perfect texture – not too dry and no hint of ‘sogginess’. The melted cheese combined with the meat and spices to create the perfect experience.
Miguel Villarejo of Domácí Paella is an ‘IT guy’ but he makes some of the best paella around. There was a great looking seafood paella but I went for the rabbit and chicken which I was told is a traditional recipe. It was great; the saffron coloured rice held loads of flavour with large chunks of meat. A real flavour of Spain.
As you can see, this was very much a global food tour and the next stop was Greece. Kousek Řecka offered traditional Greek pies and Baklava; all homemade using fresh ingredients. I tried the spinach and real feta cheese pie, which I can never resist.
Special diets are increasingly catered for in Brno and most stalls offered vegetarian options.
There were also some vegan and gluten-free options. I approached the gluten-free pizza from Jitulčiny Dobroty with a little trepidation, but was pleasantly surprised. Cleverly, they had gone for an ultra thin base which held together well but was missing the heaviness that is often a problem with gluten free cooking. There was plenty of toppings and it was definitely not inferior for being gluten-free. One of the most interesting ventures was Má Hostina which specialises in vegan and paleo food. I tried both options, the pulled pork and the chickpea mango and rice. All their food is gluten free, dairy free and does not contain any refined sugar. The effect of this is that the flavours develop without being masked by the other ingredients. Their main operation is a bistro so I was lucky to catch them on one of their outdoor excursions.
A strange intruder was perhaps the Globus stall offering grilled klobása, panini, pastries etc. It was a reminder that they do most of their own butchery on meat from dedicated suppliers.
FOR A SWEET TOOTH
People with a sweet tooth were not forgotten. It was hot so ice cream was needed and I headed for the ‘Scream’ ice cream bike. The helpful assistant explained that it was run by Minach, who are mainly chocolate makers. She recommended the chocolate made from their own production; it was perfection. The ice cream was not oversweet and the chocolate had a hint of bitterness; it was smooth and creamy without the glutinous sensation of more processed offers.
I had reached my limit so I took home a blueberry cupcake from ‘cupcake is not muffin’ Cupcakeárna and a gooey extravaganza of a (vegan)doughnut from Mlsná Holka. These were sampled by my daughters who each expressed a different preference. One, preferring the tartness of the blueberry, found the doughnut too sweet, while the other enjoyed the doughnut better. So, I suppose, it just depends on how sweet your tooth is.
I was disappointed that there wasn’t any Beer on offer from Brno’s growing number of micro breweries; however, there was beer from Pivovar Sternberg. I was recommended the multigrain bottom fermented lager. The beer was full of complex flavours and refreshed the spirit after all the food.
All in all, I can’t imagine anyone going away hungry; it is more likely they would need carrying home. The lasting impression was of a growing band of people passionate about food. So much so that they deserve a future article of their own.
Get the news first! Subscribe to our daily newsletter here. Top stories of the day in your mailbox every morning.