He is the head of the Zsidai Gastronomy Group, a Budapest family business with a history of 36 years that runs 20 restaurants, cafés, bars, pubs and two smart luxury boutique hotels in the Hungarian and Austrian capitals and Marbella, Spain. Spíler Buda would be required to continue this success, and Zsidai compiled a two-hour playlist of classic rock that he listened to as he mulled over various musical design ideas. His staff were bemused to find themselves being played hits by the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, Deep Purple, Lenny Kravitz and others during brainstorming sessions for the gestating restaurant.

The result was there to see, and hear, after Spíler Buda opened for business in mid-December 2018. Drums and cymbals hang from the ceiling and iconic Marshall amps ("Turn it up to 11!") top the pillars. Two guitars, one of them immediately recognisable as a Gibson Flying V and the other a Fender Stratocaster, cross their necks behind the bar.

A microphone and a few album sleeves are scattered around: "Tattoo You" by the Rolling Stones, "Pin Ups" by David Bowie. Leather seats add to the ambience and there are a couple of gold records in the loo. The restaurant’s slogan is "Born to Be Wild", the title of the enduring Steppenwolf hit from 1968. Queen’s "We Are the Champions" is a rallying call for Spíler Buda and its staff.

Spíler Buda is a completely new construction. A large star dominates the ceiling space, unifying the establishment with the two Spílers in District V. But while those establishments cater for tourists and locals enjoying the Budapest nightlife, this new Spíler is aimed more at the Districts II and XII crowd. MOM Park is a place where the locals organise their lives: many work in the surrounding offices and they use the shops, banks, phone companies and post office in the shopping centre.

Here is their meeting point and where they socialise with their friends, families and work colleagues. Spíler Buda means to be an easygoing sort of place for average people, many of whom will hopefully become regulars.

In the restaurant the focus is on steaks and burgers and nibbles that can be shared. The steaks come from the countries that are considered big in this regard: Argentina, Australia, the US and Spain. A meat cabinet inside the door displays Jack’s Creek Rib Eye Angus and Jack’s Creek Tomahawk Angus from Australia, and Porterhouse from the US. Spain offers Iberico Beef Rib Eye.

Hungarian beef is used in the burgers and there are four types on offer: Cheeseburger with tangy sauce and pickles, Spíler Double Burger with maple bacon, cheddar cheese and fried egg, Blue Cheese Burger with porcini mushrooms and creamy blue cheese, and Spicy Tuna Burger with slaw and chili-line mayonnaise.

Spíler Buda is particularly concentrating on lunchtime and after-work business clientele, and there is a set lunch menu with a starter and a main for HUF 2490. The lunch offering changes weekly. A breakfast menu is on the verge of being introduced, and this will offer sandwiches, pastries and coffee to eat in at the bar or take away and consume in the nearby offices.

A distinguishing factor is the wine selection, which avoids the usual Carpathian Basin, Italian and French varieties that proliferate elsewhere. Instead, the offering is considered more "new world", such as California, South America and Australia.

Just right, Zsidai figures, for "spílers", apparently a German word meaning performers/actors or gamblers/speculators, but also nicely descriptive of "cool people".


Download menu card

Download steak card


Loading Conversation

RELATED POSTS
The news that made headlines

The Brief History of the Week

Geschrieben von BT

Presenting in one concise package the week’s most important and fascinating national stories,…

ComiX Coffee in District V

Inmates running the asylum?

Geschrieben von Attila Leitner

Briton Ben Innes became the very definition of cool on Tuesday. In case you missed this, the…

Protests, no apologies as government-teachers dispute widens

Fight of the roundtables

Geschrieben von BT

The civil public education platform representing the teachers’ movement, which calls itself an…