No. 11Stebuklai

Last year, having added up all the votes of the members of the Good Food Academy, and the number of these members is more than 100, Stebuklai was announced to be the best restaurant in Lithuania. That year, for this restaurant, was like a merry-go-round, but the restaurant’s chef Martynas was strong and even managed to open another restaurant with the name Džiaugsmas, which right away brought joy to residents and guests of Vilnius, however, now we are not going to discuss the latter...  

After it had been announced to be the best of the best, Stebuklai lived through an influx of visitors. Martynas tells us that they needed not to double but to triple the team in the kitchen as well as the service staff. It had been agreed in advance that one of the most important chefs of Stebuklai would leave the restaurant. This fact did not make the triumph and ensuing responsibility easier. However, regardless of circumstances, for the entire year this restaurant upheld the benchmark that it had set.  

Now, Stebuklai has a strong team again and continues to bring joy to its customers from the early morning to the late evening seven days a week. It is not easy to find a similar example of commitment to one’s loyal customers. This place, even after its triumph, belongs to those which do not close for private events – and again, in order not to disappoint its most loyal eaters of breakfast, lunch and dinner.  

Even though, according to Martynas, at first he wanted to open a grill restaurant with a bar, however, the name given by colleagues – Stebuklai (Lithuanian: “miracles”) – obligated him to do the very best he could and he did that to live up to the expectations of the best restaurant in the country. Thus we would like to present to you Stebuklai, which already earned the title of the best restaurant in Lithuania once, but has not changed much since last year and is still excellent.

Facts

Head chefMartynas Praškevičius & Nerijus Plešanovas
Managing directorMartynas Praškevičius
Type of cuisinegrill & bar
Working hoursI-VII 8am-11pm
AddressGynėjų str. 14, Vilnius
Since2012
Capacity (seated)60
Terraceyes
Breakfastyes (everyday, weekends until 2pm)
Business lunchyes
Dog friendlyyes but only on the terrace

Place in 2016 No. 1

Special dish

CHEF.

The manager of the restaurant and the master of the kitchen – Martynas Praškevičius. He is one of the most appreciated chefs in Lithuania, who not only believes that you can learn everything in the kitchen by yourself, but has proved that to be true by his example. “I have never worked in a restaurant marked with Michelin stars or a very famous and luxurious restaurant,” the self-taught chef admits. He just knew he was going to be a cook from long ago and focused all his attention, time and talent on this vocation. 

First of all, he opened a legendary coffee shop, Stereo 45, on Jogailos Street together with his friend. Later on, he left abroad to gain experience, and having come back, he started working in the then-operating popular Asian restobar Briusly. Subsequently, together with Ali Gadžijev and Alfas Ivanauskas, he experimented a lot and learnt in their joint culinary project Virtuvės Mitų Griovėjai (Exposers of the Kitchen Myths), however, finally each of them chose his own path and started personal projects. The project of Martynas (together with partner Martynas Šlikas) was Stebuklai, and now Džiaugsmas has been added to that, too.

 

DINNER.

Even though in 2016 the restaurant received a lot of compliments and the highest number of points from the members of the academy, Martynas still does not have enough courage to call this restaurant a “fine dining” place. In his opinion, in such a case, everything should be impeccable, while he always wants to correct something.  

The menu of the evening, as in the majority of high-level restaurants, here changes every season. However, this year M. Praškevičius has noticed that he does not dare to take certain dishes off the menu, since regular visitors come back because of them and demand them. While the loyal customer, as it has been mentioned, is most important in this place. The stable classical dishes include a tuna tartare, a beef tartare, burrata with pistachio cream, and in summer – a perch tartare.  

The menu of Stebuklai is created by getting a supply, first of all, of quality products. Later on, according to the chef, all miracles lie in simplicity: fresh fish fried on cinders – a miracle. A chicken which was raised in freedom and fed with corn – also a miracle, etc. However, the manner in which everything is served in this restaurant may also be called a miracle or, to be more exact, a work of art.  

Certainly, since the original idea was to open a grill restaurant and to serve dishes with the smell of smoke, so far the menu of Stebuklai includes quite a number of dishes “from the fire”. However, M. Praškevičius also focuses quite a lot on the raw bar – he serves raw meat and fish ingeniously. Of course, perhaps it goes without saying that almost everything is prepared in the restaurant’s kitchen: from sauces which are cooked here to bread which is baked on the spot, and the bread is always served on the table with butter which is impeccably spiced and ideally soft.  

Desserts in Stebuklai are worthy of a separate paragraph. However, this paragraph will be short – Martynas’ desserts are to be tasted. These are masterpieces of all tastes which in fact are worthy to be called small miracles. By the way, desserts are not changed often, because each dessert has been elaborated to the detail. The most popular desserts include a pistachio cheese cake, while last year, during a wine and dessert combining competition, an apple pie of Stebuklai was awarded the first place.

 

BREAKFAST.

The breakfast of Stebuklai is still praised, and not only in Vilnius. And what is the breakfast’s king? Certainly, an Eggs Benedict! By the way, Martynas was one of the first chefs in Vilnius to introduce brunch. He started it still in Briusly, the menu whereof he supervises to this day.

 

BUSINESS LUNCH.

After the award of the best restaurant’s title, visitors had to book a table in advance even for the lunch of the day. Now the situation is calmer in that regard, however, as it should be, the lunch of the day in Stebuklai is not simple and it is appreciated by the loyal visitors who like to arrange business meetings in restaurants. The price of main courses is about EUR 7-8, the price of soup – EUR 3.