I spent the past week in Moscow with work, and was amazed at howÂ expensive it was.Â If you think a small coffee and croissant in Starbucks cost Â£8, you get the idea how much a three-course dinner with wine might be. As I result, somewhat reluctantly,Â I tended to eat in Italian or Japanese restaurants on the Arbat Str. which leads from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs up towards Red Square. Even in these places I was paying considerably more than I would in London!
I made up for the absence of Russian cuisine however by a trip to a Russian supermarket. In addition to some rather strong chocolates with vodka in, I came away with someÂ decentÂ caviar. I enjoyed some last night, firstly on toasted brown bread and then just by itself.Â I could tell it was goodÂ stuff as soon as I opened the tin,Â as the smell wasn’t at allÂ strong.Â The caviar itselfÂ was pleasantly moist, not too salty,Â and the eggs separate and generally unbroken.
The last time I had good caviar, I washed it down with neat vodka. Without any of that on hand this time, IÂ opted forÂ a couple of glasses ofÂ a very reasonable KWV South African chardonnay at 13.5%.