Although Lokál draws inspiration from common Czech pubs, it offers quality gastronomy. How did you manage to combine those two antipoles?
We cook from common ingredients and we don’t use any substitutes, artifical flavouring and other tricks that spread in pubs so that the cooks get extra time and lower the expenses. We cook according to classical Czech recipes in the old traditional way. For instance, we make bouillon from meat and vegetables during the night and use it in the basis of sauces, we fry the schnitzel on butter or lard. It is important for us to use the best ingredients.

One finds specifically Czech traditional dishes like smažák (fried cheese) with potato salad on the menu. How do these dishes appeal to the tourists?
They like them. Fried cheese and schnitzels are the two favourite dishes on the menu. Of course it sometimes happens that the tourists order an inappropriate side dish as dumplings or kolínka with the Czech classics. In those cases we try to explain that in combination with potatoes or potato salad they’ll enjoy it much more.
 
Lokál is most of all a paradise for beer drinkers. What distinguishes a true bartender?
Carefully treated beer. Our bartenders take care of it from the moment it comes to the restaurant till the point they put it on the table. We keep to these rules so that the beer tastes fresh till the very last drop: good beer, conscientious bartender, short tubes, constant temperature and clean glass.

There are various ways you tap Pilsner beer. Could you explain the differences among them?
The three ways we usually tap beer are called hladinka, šnyt and mlíko. Hladinka is not as popular as the others although it is the most gentle way to tap beer. In this case, beer is tapped in one flow, foam comes first and it serves to keep the beer from becoming flat. Šnyt is something that other pubs only offer to their regulars but at Lokál anyone can have it. Bartenders used to drink šnyt to taste the quality of their beer. Karel Čapek described Šnyt in Lidové Noviny (a newspaper) in 1936 as “a pint that isn’t full, with foam reaching about to half of the pint; the amount of foam in the pint depends solely on the good will of the bartender.” That said, in Lokál you will, therefore, never face the dilemma of “having one more” or “no more”. Šnyt is not only more than nothing, it is in a way as much as you could ever get. It is a perfect picture of the bartender’s skills and it says a lot about the quality of the beer. Our guests can also enjoy our beer tapped as mlíko (milk). In this case, the pint is filled only with creamy beer foam. It is so smooth and velvety that it can be drunk right away and it resembles a glass of milk. The best way to enjoy this beer is right at the bar – literally from hand to mouth. If requested, we can also tap čochtan which is beer with no foam at all. It is great for quenching one’s thirst but it has to be drunk rather fast as it has absolutely no foam and is therefore likely to become flat quite fast.

There are plenty of minor breweries in Bohemia, yet still you remain faithful to one particular brand. Why the Pilsner Urquell?
We consider the Pilsner Urquell one of the best beers here. It also meets our demands on constant quality and it manages to smoothly supply all our restaurants.

There are also a lot of other restaurants under the Ambiente brand. Which one is your favourite and why?
That’s a tough question - as if I had to say which of my children I love the most. I always spend the most energy on the latest project, so I’m currently enjoying Eska the most.

(Tomáš Karpíšek, founder of Ambiente)

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We could say that Boho is actually a luxury second hand, selection of the best of vintage housewares, clothing and jewelry. Which part prevails and which you enjoy the most?
Please, let's not call it a "second hand". It is very misleading, even though one could say, in narrow words, that in my shop you can find precise selection of very original old goods. Second hand refers to absolutely any used goods which are no longer in the original condition - therefore, not brand new. Vintage is a term for new or second hand garments originating from a previous era, produced from 1920’s to about 20 years back from present day. In a short description, vintage means authentic, original and very good quality goods which are at least 20 years old and in a good condition. That counts for clothing as well as for interior and decor. It's got to be a recognisable, authentic piece, honest and good craftmanship. That is what I like about it. These things were made to last and serve for a long time, and usually they have a certain history or a story to come along with. Unlike today's trends of commercial mass production. Saying this, if you like vintage then it doesn't mean you have to dress like your grandmother or have your apartment stocked-up with old furniture and other useless stuff which your neighbors threw out, or you just could. Entirely up to you. I like to use vintage to spice things up, to add that original touch to the obvious and predictable.

Your second shop is located next to Krymská - the street which is a community of young creative people and it is such a "Bohemian  neighborhood". You think old Vršovice somehow changed?
Not just this location in Prague is changing. I feel that people here are generally changing and finally waking up to the world trends, may I say without any offence. When I moved over here from London, I felt like Alice in a sleepy town, which can be nice, for a while. Then you realize that there is something missing, the genuine inspiration on the streets (in meaning of fashion), natural freedom and openness (in meaning of lifestyle). Thanks to a young generation, who has absorbed all this mainly by experiencing the other worlds and cultures, things are getting better now. They want it here, they are hungry for it and I am very happy that it is no longer staying hidden only in artists and other creative people communities, but it’s blending in with the rest of the residents.

Do you also go out  in Krymská?  Whether it should be for lunch or famous concerts in Cafe v lese?
It is our neighborhood and I do go to all places on Krymská and surrounding streets for good food, coffee, music, art and great people’s company. All that and plenty more to come, I hope.

Your customers are also foreigners and tourists. Where do they know about your shop from?
Tourists find my shop by a chance. What has helped a little was opening the shop next to a hostel. Foreigners and expats also know about Boho by a word of mouth, which still has, thankfully, a great power.

Do people in Prague have weakness for vintage goods?
For now, there are only a small number of those who have "the thing for vintage" over here. So I hope, there will be more people who realize that we should learn how to treasure certain things, be kind to the environment and to be true to ourselves, because it is about life, not just style.

What does the name Boho means?
Boho is an abbreviation of word Bohemian, which refers to a lifestyle. As for me, real Bohemian is someone who has the ability to appreciate beauty on a deep level, is a profound romantic, doesn't know any limits, whose world is their own creation, rather than living in a box. A Bohemian also means a resident of the former Kingdom of Bohemia.

(Patricia Madarová, Boho Vintage Concept Store owner)

 


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Spud. is an unconventional Prague city guide, that highlights its interesting spots and local businesses that are really worth visiting. With a Polaroid camera, we’re mapping four different areas: food and drinks, shops, workplaces of creative people and architecture. Spud. is focused on fresh places with unique atmosphere, cafés with the best coffee, shops with the finest goods, workshops and studios of the most skilled designers and architectural attractions with the greatest charm. Spud. is also mainly about people, who stand behind these projects. Without their invention and courage to fulfill their dreams Prague would be a much poorer place. That’s why we’re so grateful to all of them!
 
Tereza a Michal
info@spud.cz / 728 764 380



 
Price: 330 CZK

Cost of delivery: 70 CZK (in the Czech Republic)

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