Bistro Beštija (English: Bistro Beast) is a small fine bistro in the heart of Zagreb. With its unusual menu, vibrant contemporary atmosphere and a young team of professionals, Beštija stands out from the rest and offers a special dining experience.
Bistro Beštija was originally owned by Maja Bučić and Ante Grabić. The concept behind the brand was to create a space where people eat simple, fresh, seasonal and healthy dishes. Having previous experience in the industry, as creators of the Flying Pig burger bar in Hvar, they wanted to give the culinary scene something new. A restaurant where guests are treated like family and dishes are made of fresh ingredients from nearby Dolac Market.
Located in Masarykova 11, Beštija quickly became a popular spot for a quick brunch or a simple dinner. The interior reflects the menu and is both urban and elegant. Wooden and black accents bring a dash of industrial style in combination with sliding windows that invite a lot of natural light.
Recently, Beštija got new owners, Josip Jerković and Mario Marković. As regular guests of the bistro, they wanted to keep the basics of the concept but upgrade it to a fine bistro. It was important to keep the casual aspect without any particular dress code but still offer the highest quality of ingredients and a new fresh menu.
‘Homemade dishes in a restaurant way’
The new chef is Ljudevit Blažević who previously worked at restaurants Noel and Esplanada. He brought new cooking techniques and presentation ideas with him and his daily task is to create a dish of the day, following inspiration from the fresh market at Dolac.
The new menu is taking local ingredients to a higher level, where he prepares classic well-known dishes in a new and modern way. He stands out from other chefs in Zagreb by offering uncommon taste combinations such as kale soup and gilt poll pate with swiss chard.
The menu is short and simple but offers a variety of dishes. The main highlights on the menu are veal risotto with brain mousse, fish sausages, hanger steak and veal shank with lentils in horseradish, grilled pineapple and hazelnut paste.
All dishes are made from seven or eight ingredients as the Chef’s goal is to create umami, a pleasant savoury taste.
The sweet section of the menu offers unique panna cotta with Roquefort cheese, arugula gel, purple sweet potato, cracklings, olives and raspberry powder.
To perfectly complement all their dishes, Beštija serves Crobucha kombucha made with locally sourced ingredients, organic wines and cocktails.