We continue our series with more emblematic places for Plovdiv and their newer versions


In this article we won’t go as far back in time as we did with Razlaka pub and First Shumen Beerhouse, but probably some of us remember that only 5 years ago the popular restaurant Chuchura was on the place of the adventure restaurant Smokini.

In the 80s of the last century, the tavern was one of the most famous in the city under the hills and it was difficult to find a place if you didn’t have a reservation. It was founded by the prominent Plovdiv restaurateur Tanya Gineva and has long been run by the whole family. At the time, a lot of celebrities used to gather here, often with security guards from outside, and sometimes they even closed the whole place for private events. The accent in the menu has always been the traditional Bulgarian cuisine, and one of their specialties - chicken schnitzel with filling: cucumbers, boiled egg and carrots, topped with white sauce and croquettes.

In the year 2000, in the early hours of the morning, a bomb exploded in the garden of Chuchura, which fortunately caused only material damage. It was not clear who ordered the intimidation, but this may have been one of the reasons why the cult place gradually began to decline. In 2015, the restaurant was part of the popular TV show Kitchen Nightmares, in which a famous chef tried to revive its fame by helping the owner's grandson to keep up with the latest culinary innovations. Unfortunately, only a year later it was rented out and the new owners completely changed the concept.

Currently Smokini is a favorite place for everyone who wants to enjoy a well-balanced mix between specialties from the Bulgarian and various foreign cuisines. The menu is enviably varied, and the dishes combine tradition and innovation incredibly well. The list of dishes is constantly supplemented and changed to combine the freshness of spring and the lightness of the summer months, as well as to guarantee a unique taste experience in each season with the characteristic ingredients and spices. The interior has also undergone a lot of changes, pushing a large interior wall to reveal a spacious salon. There are two halls, and the summer garden on the second floor and the neatly decorated yard are a perfect escape from the city heat. At the moment, the management of the restaurant has chosen to temporarily close its doors due to the situation with the coronavirus, but we hope that very soon they will light the stoves again and offer us new flavors and recipes.