There is a souvenir shop in the center of Yerevan that I visit every time I am in Armenia to buy presents for my friends in Japan. It’s called Dalan Art Gallery. Why art gallery? Because they not only sell souvenirs but also exhibit works of contemporary Armenian artists. You can go there and enjoy art works without paying any entrance fees, as well as have a pleasant conversation with their staff. The exhibition is different every time, so if you visit the place once in a while, you can enjoy works of different artists, and what’s more important, you can know what’s going on in Yerevan’s art life.
This time I went there as usual to look at some souvenirs and I discovered that they had opened a lovely café! It’s in the backyard; you go there right through the souvenir shop and find yourself in this very green and a little rustic space right in the center of Yerevan. This outdoor café and restaurant serves Armenian style barbeque, tolma, salads, and many other popular Armenian dishes. They have an open kitchen, and you can actually see what and how they cook, what ingredients they use, etc. Unfortunately I went there right after lunch, so I was too full to eat, but I didn’t spare my chance to have a glass of beer and engage in conversation with the staff. Next time I go there, I’m definitely going to try some delicious barbeque, yum-yum.
What I really loved here is the atmosphere! This is such an amazing, green little café that will make you relax and enjoy even the hottest Yerevan days. And I am also sure you will enjoy talking with the staff, too. They (well, some of them) speak not only English and Russian, but also German, and sometimes other foreign languages. They also told me they have regular cooking lessons for foreigners and Armenians who want to learn to cook amazing Armenian dishes. If you have always wanted to learn how to cook tolma, here you go!
Address: Abovyan street 12
It’s just 5 minutes’ walk from the Republic Square. You walk to Abovyan street and go straight for several minutes until you see Dalan Art Gallery.