I’ve decided that for all of the reasons a restaurant can be marvelous, Marvelosa is absolutely the most in Buda. Right down the road from the Lánchíd Bridge and two doors down from the last great wine shop in Budapest, Bortársaság, Marvelosa squeezes its cute little Parisian-style cafe self into a Danube facing nook. I have eaten there several times, and I have never had one bad experience. The daily menu is always wonderful, the food is inexpensive and healthy, and the service is cheerful and helpful. Each table is named for an artist, and if you get there at the right time, you can sit upstairs or downstairs with a great view for people or river watching.
Even the owner matches the form. Good customer service is not something you find in Budapest, and on the rare occasions that I do come across people and owners who are friendly, I want to just dance on the rooftops or rent one of those planes that spell words with the smoke and write eat here eat here eat here in circles in the sky above the city. And I don’t mean the kind of overly-styled and gratuitously feigned “friendly” service (of course you’ll find those at the top restaurants here– and I guess if you’re paying $200 for a meal, they should force a smile while corking your wine), but rather the simple attitude that, you know what– we think our little place is pretty great too.
When we were there a few weeks ago, we were early for lunch by about 30 minutes, but they made the lunch menu for us anyway. The main course was a chicken salad, but the starter was the most delicious fruit soup I have ever tasted. I didn’t ask what was in it, but Györgyi says probably cherry, sour cherry, strawberry, raspberry. And of course it was topped with a little whipped cream. swoon.
When we went down to pay, the owner and a customer were discussing the customer’s bill. She did not have any smaller money than a 10,000 HUF bill, and her 2 cappuccinos were only 500 forints. Unfortunately, since it was early, the owner did not have change to give her, so even though the customer wanted to give her something, the owner simply wouldn’t allow it. When we paid, we tried to give her the extra forints that the woman couldn’t pay. (And understand that 500 HUF is $2.50 US) But she said absolutely no. We even tried to sneak it into the tip, and she insisted that we didn’t. In fact, because of the way our own bill tallied up, and because of the no-change problem, we ended up eating for a few forints less than the actual bill was. All that she asked from us was that we come again. And of course, we do. And you should too.
Marvelosa Kávézó és Étterem
Lánchíd utca 13
06 1 2019221