Sitting in our hotel deciding where to go to eat some traditional Bulgarian food. When we looked on Google and Trip Advisor, we kept finding places with the name mehana attached to them. So I went to my old friend Google.
A meyhane (from Persian: میخانه) is a traditional restaurant or bar in Iran, Turkey, Azerbaijan and the Balkans. It serves alcoholic beverages like wine, rakı, vodka, beer with meze and traditional foods. “Meyhane” is composed of two Persian words: mey (wine) and khāneh (house). The word entered the Serbian and Bulgarian languages as mehana (механа, plural механе, in Bulgarian механи) and in Macedonian as meana (меана, plural меани). In Bosnian language the word “mejhana” is used. A meyhane used to serve mainly wine alongside meze until the late 19th century when rakia established itself as the quasi-official national drink of Bulgaria. In Serbia, the word mehana is considered archaic, while in Bulgaria it refers to a restaurant with traditional food, decoration and music.
So we headed out to find our own mehana. We set off to the old town intending to eat at one of the places recommended by the staff in the hotel that we were staying in. However we got there and were informed that the place did not open until five o’clock in the evening.
We ordered a few nice dishes…
Banksa Kapama, a chicken dish and some pancakes.
Of course, all very tasty.