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13 Taverns of Imperial Russia

Taverns of Imperial Russia

Posted on December 11, 2009 by team


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It is well-known that Russia is rich in different sport activities, most of them are winter ones but there also some sports that are year-round. One of such year-round “sports” is called drinking. But if one would look at the nowadays Russian youngsters drinking in the streets or at their apartments it is not a tricky thing to think that there is no drinking culture in modern Russia at all. Actually, it is not true and in this article we’re going to demystify that common delusion.

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Now most Russian cities have bars and taverns where people can take a meal, meet with their friends, drink something heating and chew some day-to-day things. And these present time restaurants and bars are descendants of taverns that for the first time were established in Imperial Russia by Peter the First in Saint-Petersburg and afterwards in Moscow by the immigrants from France, Germany and Italia.

First saloons, or as they were called “Traktirs”, were opened at the order of Peter the First and were considered as very luxury places. But then such drinking establishments started becoming more popular and in 1750 Saint-Petersburg had already 120 saloons, but still they were quite expensive places to partake your meal and drink some vodka, liquor or wine. Mostly it were boyars, merchants, state workers and writers visiting them.

A bit later, when such places of drinking became a hit, many cafes were opened where usual people and students could have a meal and drink some alcohol as well as play billiards, but rows were not a rare occasion there and sometimes owners had to call police to fix that.

In 1840, new kind of drinking establishment was made: café-restaurant. It comprised all main principles of usual Traktirs but was not so expensive and its menu set was much diverse. Here is the extraction from a menu of a usual café-restaurant of 19-th century:

1) Different kinds of cool drinks as well as tea, coffee, chocolate and mulled wine;
2) Sweets and cakes of any sorts;
3) Soups, beefsteaks and any other food which can serve as a chaser;
4) Different liquors, wines Russian and foreign of a high-quality, port wines and beers Russian and foreign of a high-quality;
5) It is allowed to have some tobacco and therefore smoke in a café;
6) One can bring any newspapers Russian and foreign as well as bring board games such as chess and bones.

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13 Responses to “Taverns of Imperial Russia”

  1. Mr. Antisemite says:

    Admin you’re f@cked up kike punk!

  2. Ximlania says:

    Musa fock you.

  3. Taupey says:

    Wonderful paintings, illustrations and photographs! Thank You!

  4. cia says:

    Admin does seem terrified of alcohol.
    In a world that is designed to be an economic prison, where people voluntarily indenture themselves and slave like serfs for the economic nobility, I can’t imagine tolerating the current state of affairs without an occasional drink or two.

    Cossack Drinking Song:
    If we drink we will die,
    If we don’t drink we will die,
    So we might as well say “What the Hell!”
    …And have another DRINK!

  5. SSSR says:

    Hey barkeep,give me a boyka pevo!

  6. Kawai5ft10in says:

    Two different people!

    I like you too!

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