Bistro Bernadin


Štefániková 54
Senec, 90301
Slovak Republic

+421 02 459 23 385 | map

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TheLongBeachBum from California

3.64/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

A visit to Slovakia to work on the Bohunice NP Plant had me staying in a small village called Senec, just east of Bratislava. I never miss an opportunity to wonder around when I get chance, moreso abroad, so I headed into the town on my last night here with one of my colleagues for a couple of beers.

I visited a handful of the better bars and restaurants in the main town centre, and they were all decent enough, all very similar and each had a couple of beers worth trying, but nothing really struck me as BeerFly worthy, or places that I would recommend or return to. As I walked back to the Hotel through the sun soaked back streets, I was hankering for something like a “locals bar”, the kind of small, smoky drinking dens that served lashings of cold golden Pivo which I visited during my first ever visit to (then) Czechoslovakia.

I had all but given up hope of finding such a locals bar, when literally just 5 minutes walk away from the Hotel - there it was!! Bistro Bernadín. Hidden far from the town centre and in the back streets, this local’s bar is situated on Štefánikova which is on the way to the Hotel Senec and leads up to the nearby lake. A small affair, the chinking of glasses and low key chat from people sat outside drinking Pilsner first alerted me to the fact that this was a bar, it would have been easy to miss this.

A small two storey building that is rendered with a concrete scree finish which reminded me more of a small Spanish style bodega such was its unique shape. The Bistro Bernadin sign was colorful but the overall presentation is of a place that is a little run down.

Entrance is gained through an area to the right hand side of the small building from the sidewalk. Here there are a handful of picnic style tables where most preferred to sit and drink in the scorching and humid heat of the Slovak Summer. I ventured inside to find that there was no-one drinking side, not surprising really as the temperature inside, despite ceiling fans was stifling. The interior has a handful of dark wooden tables and chairs, all well made sturdy affairs. Lots of brewery adverts and some old photographs plus a fair layer of dust feel that adds an antique feel. The bar is to your immediate right as you enter the side door. The old woman who served us seemed surprised to see us, she gestured to my colleague and I to indicate that she would come outside to serve us, but as we were already inside, we ordered our Staropramens and collected them ourselves whilst checking out the interior. Seems like this is one of the family owned small bars that been ion existence for eons.

Beer range was very good, given that most of the local’s bars that I have frequented in both the Czech Republic and Slovakia usually only serve a brace of brews, something dark and light usually. So the range at the Bistro Bernadin was very good. Six Taps served Pilsner Urquell, Ceske Budejovice (Budvar), Staropramen Lager, Krušovice Velvet from Královský Pivovar with Golden Pheasant Light and Dark adding representation for the homegrown offerings. I spied some bottles of varying styles, some the bottled variants of the draft beers, but maybe around 10 or so different ones. Sadly they were stored in a regular fridge so I only had a short time to spy them when the fridge was opened. These bottled beers were not listed anywhere though, unlike the drafts that were all listed on a chalkboard.

A lovely old school drinking den that reminded me of past trips, some 15 years earlier. I could have sat in the adjoining beer garden and drunk lashings of the fine beer on sale here all day, with little to no effort.

Last Visit: Thursday 22nd June, 2006.

Sep 03, 2006
Bistro Bernadin in Senec, Slovak Republic
Place rating: 3.64 out of 5 with 1 ratings