As usual, Shota and I were on the hunt for something a bit different in central Tbilisi and headed towards our trusty Akhvlediani Street where we discovered Britannia at the end of it (on Nikoladze Street).
Excited at the prospect of Yorkshire puddings, we peered through the window hoping to judge whether or not the smog of cigarette smoke would be too much for us to bear like a lot of similar places. To our surprise, there was none, and it wasn’t dingy either!
Immediately greeted with smiling faces and an adorable dog named after Jack Daniels, we took a seat and had a quick look at the menu. It’s not the type of place you should go for food, more snack food to have with a few beers, but they had a lot of variation for a place in Tbilisi ranging from Indian dishes to full English breakfasts.
We settled for some Indian stuff, I can’t remember the name exactly but one was a sort of flat bread (Pranta?) filled with potato, and the other was just some fried rice and veg. The a caeser salad on the side for Shota. It wasn’t bad, not the best I’ve had but it was fine considering the nature of the place.
This was of course followed by dessert (chocolate icecream) and some drinks on the house, after an encouraging conversation with the owner, John (a guy from Newcastle) who invited us to his opening day of Britannia Pier the following day.
So on Saturday evening we made our way to Britannia Pier, John’s new bar on a boat on Tbilisi Sea. We arrived quite late so most people had left already, and the heavens opened just on time too, but it was nice to spend some time in such a beautiful area.
As of this week, the bar will be in full swing. Food, drinks, barbecue, fishing, water skiing, boat rides and live music are all available in a private alcove near the Yacht club. You can get there by following the first dirt road on the right before getting to Gino Paradise.
Considering the location, facilities and quality, you have to pay for entry to get onto the private land, but it’s so worth it. Escape from the heat and dust of Tbilisi on just a 20 minute bus ride for a place that only frogs come to play.
We had a private invitation this time, for the opening weekend, although will definitely head there again. John and his wife are so welcoming and it’s refreshing to be surrounded by smiling people and good service.
The evening got colder as we drifted into conversation with the others, one of which was a Scottish guy who gave me some food for thought about the SNP and other such issues. It was so odd to be surrounded by English speakers!
Also, any place with a dog this cute has my vote. I’d give Britannia a 9/10 for service, quality and atmosphere. Britannia Pier will easily be the same or more when it gets rolling this month. Go and take a look!