It’s a Thursday night and there’s already the smell of spring in the air in Kyiv. We walk slowly on one of the of the oldest streets in the city. The signage of Not only Fish restaurant is not easy to spot, but it’s impossible to miss this place because of the classy cars near the entrance.
The venue is situated on the corner of two streets. At first you may think it’s quite small, but upon entering you will find a big fancy restaurant with two floors and a terrace. For those with wheels, there is a valet on hand to park for you.
A hostess meets us inside and guides us to a table. It’s better to book a table in advance, because the weekends especially tend to book up.
In this restaurant you choose the mood for your evening. Upstairs – a classy stage, set with a piano player, live jazz band, or some other local show. The atmosphere immerses you in a romantic mood. In addition to tables is a modern sushi bar, not big, but big enough for a quick dinner.
On the other hand, the first floor is abuzz. The light is subdued, DJs play sets beside a big bar and a wine cellar. It’s the perfect place for a Friday out with friends or a date. Later, when the music becomes faster and the beat stronger, you may feel the urge to dance – and here you can.
Not Only Fish is a pan-Asian restaurant. On the menu, you’ll find fish and meat and everything is served with special sauce: sweet and salty and a little bit spicy at the same time. The menu features a wide-choice of fresh fish, which you can order as sushi, steamed, baked, or grilled. Some combinations are for the true gourmand, such as dorado fillet with foie gras or French fries with truffle paste and parmesan.
We sample tuna tartare with black caviar and avocado. Tartare and avocado is always a winning combination, and here the taste is superbly fresh. The caviar on top really makes the dish.
Salmon sashimi with black caviar, fresh salmon, sauce with eight spices, and small peppers is the perfect second dish. After just one bite the desire arises to have more! Next up is baked lavrak in banana leaves, which consists of fresh white fish with a special sauce and vegetables.
For dessert a must try is Secret Maya: mango, coconut ice-cream inside of a meringue cupola. The perfect combination. We have been sipping on passion fruit aperol through out the evening, a light and fresh tipple, which also happens to complement the dessert. The service here is friendly, polite, and unobtrusive. The servers know the menu and concept nuances in depth. They don’t just show and tell, but also play, and contribute to the general conversation (quite tactfully at the same time) creating a fun atmosphere.
Wine List and Cocktails
The wine list is extensive, with options from Italy, France, Spain, California, and Israel. Also available are several variants of whiskey, brandy, sparkling wines, gin, brandy, and vodka, as well as absinthe, liqueurs, vermouth, sake, and beer.
In the lead-up to Easter there is also a Lenten menu. The chef caters to vegetarian diners and people who are trying to fast ahead of the big holiday, making it possible to spend a lovely evening without the traditional fish or meat.
Tuna tartare with black caviar and avocado 620 UAH
Salmon sashimi with black caviar 445 UAH
Baked Lavrak in banana leaves 575 UAH
Secret Maya 235 UAH
Aperol cocktail x2 210 UAH
Grand Total 1850 UAH
Make sure you try:
Gunkan with scallop and salmon caviar with truffle 165 UAH
Roll with crab and salmon 520 UAH
Not Only Fish
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