Our last full day in Veliko Turnovo, Bulgaria was already a special one when we walked into Restaurant Shtastliveca for afternoon refreshment. We had taken the Free Walking Tour of the Old Town, followed by lunch at Gurko Tavern and shopping in Samovodska Charshiya. Then we saw the incredible views of the city from our table next to restaurant’s window, and thought, “ok, this is really nice.”
We had seen other views of Asen’s Monument, the huge equestrian sculpture at the center of the city, but the view from this angle might have been the best. And then when I looked to my left, I could see the city’s Old Town laid out before me. Yes, really nice indeed.
Then I looked at the dessert menu, and I got an extra wonderful surprise. First, I saw that they listed two kinds of sorbet, very nice (and their numbering system for food allergies, which used the number 7 to indicate the presence of dairy products, was pretty awesome).
I kept looking beyond the sorbets, just in case there might be some other dessert options for me (always the hardest part of a meal to find dairy free, but I can always hope…). And whaddaya know! they listed a vegan chocolate cake!
I suppose we could postulate the theory that the restaurant sells a vegan cake because Veliko Turnovo is a university town, and students are more likely to be vegans than the general population. Whatever the reason, they listed it on the menu, so I had to order it (just for scientific purposes, you understand).
Well, it turned out to be quite wonderful. And for just 4.90 Bulgarian Lev, that translates to less than 3 American dollars for a great vegan dessert. How often does that happen?
And as you can see from this picture and others I have included of the restaurant, this place is decorated with charm, lots of lace and soft comfy chairs. Kind of like in the style of your hip grandmother, if that makes any sense.
One final joy was to be reminded that this restaurant has a sister restaurant of the same name in Sofia – Tedi had pointed that out to us as she guided us through Sofia on our first day, and she mentioned that again when she picked us up after our transcendent dessert (Therese also had something that was quite wonderful). So we resolved to make a stop at the Sofia Shtastliveca when we returned to the capital city!