Szimpla Kert is the pioneer of our ruinpubs. It is really a cult place giving new trends. Undoubtedly the best known ruinpub among the locals and the tourists, as well.
Jewish Quarter became the Jewish ghetto during the World War II. The area had been left for rotting and empty, a dark memento of what happened during the war, and never really had been restored during the communist-socialist era for decades. This is the area where all started, on Kazinczy street especially.
A bunch of brave guys opened “little” Szimpla in 2001 on Kertész street, without the slightest thought of what will they actually start in the city. They had laid down the definition of the ruin bars: get a dodgy old building before it would be demolished, gather all colorful odds and gadgets and whatever, use them as furniture and decoration, and serve good drinks. That’s all. A great recycle bar at its finest.
Not just a great ruinbar, but Szimpla immediately became a cult place, attracted many artistic and creative people of the capital. In 2004 the Szimpla, what we know now, moved to Kazinczy street, into an old, dodgy building, with just a small bar, a hidden ping-pong room, and an open-air cinema in the garden. Then it started to grow, slowly, became more and more eclectic and colorful, offered more and more cultural events, gigs, workshops. In the past few years, it became the biggest and best-known ruinbar, even by the tourists too, but without losing its unique atmosphere and friendliness.
However, the open-air cinema doesn’t operate anymore, Szimpla still has so many things to do and see. They even have a yearly live music contest for young bands, or sometimes small pop-up exhibitions, and have a tiny bicycle shop/garage too. Szimpla is not only a cafè on the afternoon and a cool bar on the evening, but on Sundays, they also host the coolest farmer’s market in the capital called Szimpla Farmers Market.
The Sunday Market first opened five years ago, still offers fresh goods from 9AM to 2PM. Still-warm homemade pieces of bread and buns, cheese from the farms, jam-like granny made it, fresh fruits and vegetables are also available, even for a wee taste, and on top, there’s often live music too. Real countryside experience in the heart of Budapest, and much better than the classic markets. You really don’t want to miss this.
Just right across Kazinczy street, in front of the entrance of Szimpla, there’s Szimpla Háztáji, a tiny little food bar, where everything’s fresh and nice, all stock coming from those farmers who you can see there on Sundays. Have a lunch there anytime, you’ll definitely enjoy it.n.
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