If you have ever had any good food in Prague, the odds are you may have tasted some of the creations by Julka, otherwise known as Maskrtnica in the blogosphere. Julka has baked the first breads for the open-faced sandwiches in Sisters, and is the woman behind the Prague food phenomenon that are the vanilla custard donuts in Maso a kobliha. Throughout her "baking career", the journalism graduate was supplying bread to, and consulting breads with, a variety of great restaurants and bistros in Prague, and is one of the forces behind the Pecem Pecen project and the Sourdough Map, which have singlehandedly brought back the tradition of baking sourdough bread at home. So yup, she’s a big deal.
And it shows: we’ve tried to meet her for weeks now, after she’s come back from her 3-month tour of the US where she went through a series of short internships and visits in various artisanal bakeries, and still could not get a proper hour to sit down and have a nice chat. In between pop-ups, festivals and consulting, she’s that busy. And no wonder. If there’s one person that embodies bread in Prague, it is her (and perhaps Tomas at the Praktika bakery). So we’re happy that she at least shared her five favorite places in Prague, and her five favorite social media accounts. Here they are:
Five favorite places in Prague
Tea Mountain. Because “here, I am human”. :) I can relax and take a break here. I can breath in the most beautiful, fine smells, and buy favorite presents. An I will hardly buy better tea elsewhere.
Sansho. I worked at Maso a kobliha next door up until recently, so I am biased and I am the biggest cheerleader for the entire trio of Paul Day’s businesses. But Sansho is a fun Asian restaurant with a fine dining kitchen that has a comfy, homey feel. And thanks to the casually informal atmosphere, it will not intimidate those who are afraid of the “better” restaurants. Extra points go for a full menu for vegetarians and an extraordinary approach to sourcing animal products.
Bread by Praktika bakery. Given its consistency and flavor, bread by Tomas, the young baker/owner, would stand out when if the Prague artisanal bread scene weren’t as microscopic as it is today.
Novy svet café. The whole package, with the walk to and from the cafe, is a treat. Sadly, I don’t have the time to treat myself to it as often as I would like, but our friends from abroad are always transfixed by the experience, and we are, too. :)
Farmers markets. The market I like the most is my local market at the Jiriho z Podebrad square, which isn’t as busy and overflowing with unnecessary things. Given their frequency (they are open three times a week when in season), they work as the main supply for our household: we hardly need to buy food anywhere else, and do not need to alter our food plans in any way.
And then there’s a million other things... I had to leave out bars, pubs, The Tavern, Las Adelitas, the fried cheese at Lokal, and other local favorites...
Five favorite social media accounts
@cuketka Anywhere. He’s a wealth of knowledge (just look at his Twitter feed), he’s funny (primarily on Snapchat), and we simply like him. :)
@apieceofbread on Instagram. A super-smart baker from Tasmania and a wizard of natural fermentation, sourdough breads and other baked stuff, isn’t it incredible? I must visit him some day.
@thereshecooks on Instagram. A super-nice photographer and now a flying baker originally from Poland, currently in San Francisco. She takes pictures of beautiful people, food and (her own) bread. And she’s a force of nature: I know because we met in Prague and in San Francisco.
@klarabernklau Currently a barista in Cafe Letka. I love her slightly dark humor that may be hard to understand for some foreign nationals.