Developing this list of the top restaurants in Cluj took place during a recent stay of one month that I made in the capital of Transylvania, which quickly rose to the top of my list of favorite cities in Romania.
The dining options available at the restaurants in Cluj are quite varied. There are restaurants serving everything from authentic Romanian cuisine to haute cuisine, as well as amazing vegetarian options and burgers that will make your mouth water.
When you are in Cluj, you shouldn’t skip out on the following activities because they will help you become more familiar with the city (but you should move quickly because they are popular):
- Cluj-Napoca: 2.5-Hour Guided Walking Tour
- Cluj-Napoca: Turda Salt Mine & Alba Carolina Fortress Tour
- Cluj: Medieval City Exploration Game and Tour
- 1 My 14 Favorite Cluj Restaurants
- 1.1 Baracca
- 1.2 Via
- 1.3 Roots
- 1.4 Zama
- 1.5 Are you also planning a visit to Bucharest? Check out this guide to Bucharest restaurants!
- 1.6 Casa Boema
- 1.7 Eggcetera
- 1.8 Old & Tasty Burgers
- 1.9 Bujole
- 1.10 Roata
- 1.11 Samsara Foodhouse
- 1.12 Bistro 1568
- 1.13 Hanul Dacilor
- 1.14 Will you also be visiting Brasov? Click here to learn about the best Brasov restaurants.
- 1.15 Rex Pizza & Spaghetti
- 1.16 Tokyo Japanese
- 1.17 Which of these Cluj restaurants do you most want to try? Let me know in the comments section below!
My 14 Favorite Cluj Restaurants
Strada Napoca 8A // +40 732 155 177
Fine eating in a hip and trendy atmosphere can be found at Baracca, which is without a doubt my top pick among the local restaurants. The majority of residents in Cluj think that this is one of the top restaurants in the city.
On the menu, you’ll find both regional specialties and meals from other countries. They employ only ingredients of the best possible quality, and they source locally wherever it is feasible.
Dishes that should not be skipped include the beef tartar beginning with black garlic and herb butter, and the duck confit main course.
the duck breast with a beetroot, black cherry, and thyme reduction or the Angus beef cheeks served over pureed parsnip.
It is recommended that you make reservations (especially on weekends). Last but not least, don’t forget to reserve space for dessert since their tiramisu is legendary.
Strada Inocențiu Micu Klein 6 // +40 264 593 220
Although Via is my second favorite restaurant in Cluj, I think I visited it the most out of all the restaurants in town. The restaurant is incredible, but the level of fine dining is not quite on par with that of Baracca. (This indicates that the prices were reduced!) The food at Via is concise yet well prepared. The roasted duck, the spicy lamb soup, and the Mangalista roasted pork over root vegetables with herbed potatoes are the three dishes that are considered to be the restaurant’s best.
It’s quite probable that you’ll need to make a reservation here as well. In the event that the weather is unsuitable for sitting outside on the patio, you can ask to be seated in the dining room that is located downstairs and is adjacent to the kitchen. I preferred eating in that area to the main dining room of the restaurant.
Bulevardul Eroilor 4 // +40 749 995 545
Roots was always our first choice for breakfast. There, you can enjoy a delicious breakfast or brunch while sipping on some of the city’s finest coffee.
If you have a craving for sweets, you absolutely must try these pancakes made with chocolate and red berries.
Because I am not usually in the mood for something sweet first thing in the morning, my go-to breakfast toast consists of mashed avocado, cured salmon, and a poached egg.
Strada Napoca 16 // +40 755 080 777
Zama managed to take us by surprise. Although it has a fairly upscale vibe when you walk in, the prices are surprisingly affordable, particularly when considering the excellent quality of the food.
Traditional Romanian dishes are reimagined and presented in an upscale manner at Zama. If you are going to be dining with a large party, you should definitely get one of their delicious starter platters for the table.
In addition, we really enjoyed Zama’s house wine, which despite its low cost was of very high quality, particularly the white wine. The rosé was too sweet for my taste, but they served better rosés by the bottle. I would recommend trying one of those instead.
Are you also planning a visit to Bucharest? Check out this guide to Bucharest restaurants!
Strada Iuliu Maniu 34 // +40 734 414 414
After learning that I was going to be writing about food in their city, many of the residents gave me Casa Boema’s name as a recommendation. The restaurant was wonderful, and they have a patio that ranks among the most attractive in all of Cluj.
When the rain started falling, we took shelter in the upstairs dining room, which despite its size managed to maintain a homey atmosphere. I enjoyed perfectly cooked duck served over pureed carrots with roasted vegetables, while my friend had an impressive-looking lamb burger.
If the weather is nice, you should make every effort to sit outside on the patio.
Strada Napoca 13
Eggcetera is a relatively new restaurant in Cluj, but it has already achieved a high level of success; as a result, there is almost always a line outside the door.
The majority of the items on the menu are toasts, both sweet and savory, that are presented in a manner that is clearly intended for Instagram.
I also really like how almost all of the seating is arranged around the large communal table in the middle of the room. This turned out to be a wonderful opportunity for me to strike up conversations with locals and receive other helpful recommendations concerning places to go and activities to partake in while I was in town.
It is not a problem at all if you are not in the mood for designer toast. Breakfast tacos, French toast, and even shakshuka are some of the other options that they provide.
Old & Tasty Burgers
Strada Napoca 6
Another one of the restaurants in Cluj that locals love is Old and Tasty. Although they only offer about five different burgers on their menu, you are free to create your own. The menu may not be very extensive, but each item has been given careful consideration. The energized staff members were more than happy to discuss each burger with us and assisted us in making our selections.
On that particular day, we all sampled a variety of burgers; however, the avocado burger topped with feta cheese emerged victorious, and I personally would return just to order that burger again.
Piața Unirii 15
One morning, the three of us went to Bujole for brunch, and we each ordered a different dish, but we all agreed that it was one of the best things we’ve ever eaten. The brioche brunch item was a welcome departure from the traditional eggs Benedict due to its unique flavor and texture.
Because their desserts also appeared to be works of art, you should save some room for them if you are someone who enjoys having something sweet at the end of their meal.
Strada Alexandru Ciurea 6 // +40 264 592 022
Roata is one of the best restaurants in Cluj for sampling traditional Romanian dishes prepared in a home-style setting. On the menu, you’ll find soups, grilled meats, and a number of traditional dishes from Transylvania.
This is also the best place in town to try the Romanian dessert known as papanasi, which is made up of fried pastry with cheese and sour jam that is made with local fruit.
Strada Ștefan Ludwig Roth 5 // +40 799 073 073
The Samsara Foodhouse, which should not be confused with the Samsara Teahouse, was highly recommended to me by the community members in the area. The vegetarian restaurant also offers a significant number of vegan and raw food options. The raw vegan gazpachos, salads, pastas, and this Moroccan rice dish are just a few examples of Samsara’s inventive culinary offerings, which also include raw vegan gazpacho.
The dessert menu at Samsara has also garnered quite a bit of attention in recent years. Even raw vegan options are available for a good number of their sweet treats.
Bulevardul 21 Decembrie 1989 14 // +40 770 163 152
Another of the places in Cluj that I frequented frequently was the Bistro 1568. You can always find something new to try on their menu because it has a sufficient amount of variety thanks to their specials, but it is not so extensive that it is intimidating.
I liked that their wine list, which did not have the most extensive selection but did have many good choices. The beef cheeks encrusted in coffee were one of my favorite dishes, as was the roasted pork with savory pancakes.
Str. Brâncusi Constantin, 86A // +40 264 443 094
When asked where to find the most authentic Romanian food, locals repeatedly recommended Hanul Dacilor as the best option. The prices are reasonable, the portions are large, and the restaurant is great for sharing; however, the service could have been a little bit more attentive at times. In general, I thought it was a good option for sampling locally sourced food.
Will you also be visiting Brasov? Click here to learn about the best Brasov restaurants.
Rex Pizza & Spaghetti
Strada Bolyai János 9 // +40 264 596 430
This welcoming Italian restaurant is probably best known for their pizzas, but they also serve a variety of pasta dishes. I only ever tried the pizza, which was delicious, and I never tried any of the other food. In spite of the fact that it is not necessarily made in the traditional Italian manner, it is an excellent choice for when you have an urge for pizza.
During these times, the establishment typically has a significant number of patrons. Also, make sure you take advantage of one of the best deals in town, which is their lunch specials for 17 lei, which are equivalent to $4.25 USD.
Strada Gheorghe Marinescu 5 // +40 759 020 024
Although you might not think of coming to Cluj for really good Japanese food, other food bloggers had highly recommended this place to me before I had even arrived in Romania!
The restaurant offers a service equivalent to that of wearing white gloves, and many of the wait staff are attired in kimonos. If it weren’t for the somewhat high prices, the food would have been excellent.
If you happen to be in Cluj and have a hankering for sushi or ramen, you simply must pay a visit to this restaurant. In addition to that, they offered what appeared to be a very impressive chef’s tasting menu, which I have bookmarked for my next visit.