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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

No Poison in This Berry

MTYagoda has opened in Poison's former premises, with simpler design.
Poison always seemed like a strange name for a bar, not that it ever seemed to turn off the capital's well-to-do bohemians. So it was a little surprising to discover that this drop-dead trendy spot on Myasnitskaya had passed away late last year, covered by a large tarpaulin with "Yagoda -- coming soon" emblazoned across it.

After some time, Yagoda has finally arrived. The new cafe's design is simpler than its dark, mysterious predecessor's. In fact, it is simple to the point of minimalism, with very little in the way of superfluous decor, which helps create an open, spacious feel, accentuated by lighting used to good effect.

The menu is also decidedly more democratic than at Poison. The breakfast menu, which is available all day, features an English option with bacon, sausages, champignons, tomato, potato, eggs and toast for 159 rubles, and an Italian one with tomato, mozzarella, grapes, nuts and pesto sauce for 199 rubles. For those watching their waistline there is even a "diet" breakfast, with baked tvorog cheesecakes, cabbage fritters and fresh juice for 209 rubles.

Other inexpensive offerings include five varieties of sandwiches, all with fries, for 199 rubles. The salad selection features all the classics, such as Caesar with chicken (199 rubles) and prawns (259 rubles), plus a couple of interesting creations such as smoked duck breast with cashews, asparagus and lettuce under a raspberry dressing (299 rubles). The six kinds of soup range from 109 rubles for minestrone with parmesan up to 149 rubles for fish soup.

Although the beer selection is fairly limited, with bottled Corona (150 rubles) and Miller (120 rubles), the cocktail selection is decent, averaging 170-350 rubles. A cosmopolitan costs 200 rubles while a kir royale goes for 350 rubles. There is also a good selection of fresh berry drinks for 160-330 rubles.

13 Myasnitskaya Ul., Bldg. 3, 624-4696, noon-midnight, Fri. & Sat. noon-last guest, M. Chistiye Prudy.