Hundreds of meters above Lake Bled in northeast Slovenia, in a castle perched on a cliff, is a most unlikely restaurant. The location doesn’t exactly need a five-star dining establishment to make it a superb attraction. Already, standing on the castle walls, you are overlooking a scene out of a fairytale. A lake of the deepest blue, filled with gondolas swishing back and forth to an island – with a miniature steepled church! – sitting in the middle. With scenery like this, one could easily make do with a sub-par tourist food joint. Instead, you get a Michelin-grade restaurant serving some of the best food in southern Europe. The restaurant is run by the local culinary school, and produces dishes that are exemplars of classical cooking. We chose a seafood risotto and suckling pig with garlic potatoes. I’m not sure if it was the scenery or the food or a combination of the two, but, upon biting into our food, we went quite literally speechless. The risotto! Light and airy, with an aroma like you were sitting right next to the ocean. The suckling pig! Luscious, velvety, rich, crackling with every bite. We sat in silence for most of the meal, our eyes darting between our meals and the blue water below us. For the rest of that trip – seven days – we talked about that meal at breakfast, lunch and dinner, remembering the tastes, smells, and sights of that day.
A Meal out of a Fairytale
Bled Upper Carniola 4260