Normal day of work – but no meetings till 1pm, so my morning is finally a little relaxing. My manager is desperate for some pizza/burgers – so we actually get dragged over to the local mall. Talk about exactly like American malls. This place is exactly like any mall you’d see in the states sans the Cyrillic lettering. They have a Sborro, Subway, Baskin-Robbins and a McDonalds knockoff that has the exact same menu. I reluctantly get a burger – but would have rather had a good Russian dish.
Overall, Russian food is very easy for the American palette to adjust to. Lots of chicken/rice and potatoes – with Nizhny having lots of lake and river fish from the Vulga. The food is usually less spicy in general – but still very tasty. The beer is good but nothing beyond the standard, normal tasting beer. The Vodka is very, very smooth. They aren’t big on cold drinks or ice in your drinks. Pop and other beverages are stored in fridges – but I’ve never seen refrigerators that cool so poorly. Most of them seem to be no more than just fans blowing air. My guess is their cooling elements aren’t even plugged in. Still – no big deal – just a difference. The food is good and I haven’t had a single issue yet. Finger’s crossed for a safe rest of the trip.
At night we head out to a really nice restaurant with the Russian manager. The place was very nice, and the food even better. We had caviar and beef roll appetizers with vodka; then I had a roasted chicken/pheasant on a bed of potatoes and some sort of spicy shoots. Fantastic.
After that, we headed just down the block to the Rock Bar. It’s filled with younger folks and tons of western ‘rock memorabilia’ such as 80’s posters/concert bandannas from Van Halen and other such aged giants. The stools have jeans stapled to them with dark black boots for the ‘feet’. When we get there, the live band had finished, but they put up a projector on the stage with lots of German dark metal like Ramstein playing. We enjoy some drinks then head home. Another successful day.