Belgrade, the pulsating Serbian capital, is notorious for its nightlife. People from all over the world are eagerly coming to this city that never sleeps to have a memorable night out. Indeed, Belgrade offers so much choice, from huge clubs with techno and electronic music, to bars with live music, restaurants and cafes. However, there is something unique about Belgrade that not every city has. If you find yourself in this amazing city, I would warmly recommend you to ditch all of the above mentioned and spend just one night in the glorious, authentic Serbian kafana. Want to find out more? Keep scrolling!
The concept of kafana is unique to Balkan countries and it dates back centuries ago. Initially, kafana as a term was used in former Yugoslav countries for a distinct type of local bistro which primarily serves alcoholic beverages and coffee (kafa in Serbian), usually accompanied with light snacks called meze, similar to Spanish tapas. Kafana used to be the place where la crème de la crème of society, including renowned poets, actors and musicians used to gather in the evening, drink until the morning and enjoy the live music performance of authentic Serbian songs, which is another unique feature of this place. This concept of a social gathering place for men who would drink rakia and other alcoholic beverages originated in the Ottoman Empire, and has tagged along ever since. However, the concept has slightly changed today, as kafana became the trendiest spots to go out in Belgrade.
Kafana Sokace is one of the most famous kafanas, almost like a renowned institution, located near Kalemegdan fortress, in the very heart of Belgrade. Due to its popularity, I would recommend you to call at least the day before to book a table. Make sure to arrive hungry, as Kafana Sokace has big yet affordable meze plates with meat, cheese, pastries, salads and vegetables. Trust me, you do not need a dinner before going to Kafana Sokace, this is the place to eat and drink till you are full. Kafana Sokace, apart from the warm interior and great atmosphere, has the best staff who will be happy to help you with all the drink suggestions, depending on your mood. With them, there will not be a moment in the evening when your glass is empty.
Before going to Kafana Sokace, please make sure to read these useful guidelines on how to prepare yourself, your stomach and your way back. Make sure to dress up, but not too much, as you would really want to be comfortable for dancing. Indeed, Kafana Sokace is the best place to get the know the essence of Serbian society and get to the core of its people. However, there is one more thing you should know – the concept of an expensive song (skupa pesma in Serbian). In Kafana Sokace you will hear the best live musicians you have ever witnessed and you will notice that people are usually giving money to them. The moment they start playing the song that hits you right into your soul, makes you want to break the glass (careful where you aim!) and jump on the table to dance, you know it has happened. If the song, no matter if you may not understand its lyrics, causes goosebumps all over your body, makes you cry and smile at the same time and feel as if you want to give all the money you have to the musicians – that is when you have heard the 'expensive song'.
Kafana Sokace, with great food, traditional alcohol and music that hits you to the core will definitely offer you a unique night out in Belgrade.
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