“Have you eaten in the village? No? Well, then you haven’t eaten in Montenegro”. This is something you’ll hear locals say when you ask them about restaurants that serve authentic Montenegrin food.
Indeed, if you want you to experience the local cuisine, you’ll have to go to the villages. Or try farm to fork–a unique new culinary experience in Montenegro. This modern take on traditional goodness brings organic meals from the villages to the outskirts of Podgorica.
Montenegrin cuisine based on a slow food concept
If you look around any city in Montenegro, you’ll see a lot of fast food kiosks selling ćevapi (minced beef or pork sausages) or burek (rolled pastry, most popular variation is with meat). Of course they are also often selling pizza for travelers that don’t want to explore in the food and culture department.
A lot of locals will, in fact, point you to these places when you ask about places to eat local food. But this is a common misconception.
Throughout history, meat was a rare occurrence in Montenegrin cuisine. It was considered a luxury among generally poor inhabitants.
Therefore, local ingredients were used to prepare meals. Staple ingredients of the historical Montenegrin village diet were nettle, corn flour, and homemade cheese. These were such a part of daily life, that a common saying among locals conveys that when the nettle starts growing, then no one will starve.
Some of the national Montenegrin dishes include:
- Kacamak – there are two main variants of this dish. One, made out of corn flour and the other, made out of potato. The texture is creamy and kacamak is usually served with yogurt or kajmak (dairy product similar to cream cheese).
- Cicvara – fried corn flour served hot with kajmak.
- Popara – our favorite breakfast from the childhood. It’s a cooked leftover bread made with cheese, milk and oil.
- Rastan – it is a type of cabbage cooked and prepared with spices and meat.
- Japraci – leaves of rastan rolls filled with meat and rice and then steamed.
Authentic Montenegrin food in the modern era
Rise in popularity of slow food and organic food gives a chance to Montenegro to establish a strong national brand based on the traditional recipes fused with modern day understanding of everyday human needs.
There’s more finesse in presentation nowadays and there’s an effort to add layers of complexity in simple Montenegrin dishes.
Most households located on the outskirts of the cities grow their own vegetables and some keep chickens. This contributes to some level of self-sustainability of the small families that are always keen to share the incredible food with visitors.
Farm to fork dining in Montenegro
This unique dining experience is brought in collaboration with our hard-working partners who enjoy cooking and sharing their food. The aim of this experience is to connect visitors with Montenegrin culture through the food made out of locally sourced ingredients.
There’s also the opportunity to talk to the local families and hear their stories, which is not something you can do at any restaurant.
Meanderbug is now making farm to fork evening meals available near Podgorica. Current availability includes:
- Family Dinner near Podgorica – on the northwest side of Podgorica in Beri Village, bookings are now possible for organic farm to fork dinners for traditional and fusion dinners on a family-owned multi-speciated farm
- Taste of Memory – in historic Njegusi Village between Lovcen National Park and the Bay of Kotor, this amazing place is matched by the organic foods and gracious hosts
The different farm to fork experiences vary with costs ranging from 10 to 20 euros per person. These organic food experiences include:
- Locally sourced organic ingredients from multi-speciated farm(s)
- Dishes served based on foods that are in season
- Organic foods and beverages usually including local wine, juices, etc.
- National food motif that is organic with fusion or other themed concepts
- Open tour of the farm