Chris’ mum took us to this beautiful little restaurant near the Australian embassy, called Noev Kocheg (Noah’s Ark) (9 Maly Ivanovsky Pereulok, Moscow). Tucked away in the winding lanes of the Ukrainian Quarter, it’s not easy to find but well worth it. Step through the large front doors and it’s like stepping into another world… errr.. kinda like stepping back into the old days in the Bible, to me.
The interior is absolutely splendid. Hand-carved decor, luxe wall paintings, copper panels depecting subjects from the Bible, etc.. almost all the decor is imported from Armenia. The attention to detail is amazing – the halls are decorated with tuff and stones by Armenian masters and even the little fish pond at the entrance is shaped like a miniature Lake Sevan (Armenia’s famous body of water)! It’s pretty astounding to see all the opulence and rich colours when you step in.. very very unlike other restaurants we’ve been in.
Armenian cuisine is over 2,000 years old! Read more about it here. I have NEVER eaten Armenian food in my life, so was terribly eager to try it out. It is riiiight up my alley :) To me, it’s in-between Mediterranean and Middle Eastern food. I was surprised that they don’t swap their dishes by cooking it with a lot of ingredients – instead it’s quite simple so the freshness and flavour of the meat really shines through.
We predominantly ordered the grilled meats, something very common in Armenia. It was so impressive! Just simple dishes – marinated meats barbecued to perfection and served with some dipping sauces. Even the bread basket (full of unusual Armenian local baked goods) was unique to me, and it tasted delicious.
My favourite was the puffed pastry dessert. I forgot the name :( It came out a large-ish serve, but was so airy it wasn’t too filling. Layers and layers of feather-light pastry and dusted with icing sugar, with a honey flavour. Again, very simple, but the flavours was subtle and beautiful, and the texture of the pastry layers was just amazing. It was an absolute delight :)
If we were back in Moscow, I’d come back to this restaurant for sure!! Well worth a visit..
The impressive Noahs Ark restaurant building
Beautiful gold-laced table setting
A sort of mulled wine drink to start
A basket of assorted breads – so good!
My assorted plate of BBQ meats
Half a grilled chicken
Mushrooms stuffed with pork fat(!)
Incredibly flakey, airy dessert. Ohhhhhhh how we loved this!!!
Petit fours and a giant bowl of assorted sugars (for coffee/tea)