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blind date:
Head spinning corridors with old squeaky floors.

Young diners.

Eating in the canteen felt like sitting in a sauna.

Painting on the wall and cleanliness.

Architecturally interesting building for a walk after lunch.

Impressive pink walls.
Funny carved heart shaped chairs.

Great combination of colours! Yellow walls match blue artificial flowers.

Low door, so everyone has to lean over to enter the canteen.

Fresh coffee and an espresso machine!

A sink to wash hands.

A coatrack.
One won’t find two identical plates in the canteen.

If you are in a hurry, you can eat your quick lunch sitting at the bar.

If you are bored, you could try guessing the names of the plants at the windows of the canteen. I guess that would take you at least a week.

A coat rack.

A good location in a center of the city.

Air conditioning system (though, it was not working on my visit day).
Furniture, walls and interior details that remind of the Soviet times.

A long table always served for the banquet.

A male cook in the kitchen.

Soft and nice music.

Special enclosed corridor for the queue. Very interesting thing.

Conveyer for dirty dishes.
A worker with plates with lunch dishes running among tables.

Long, but quickly moving queue on lunchtime.

Barely heard music.

Freshly made carrot juices.

Examples of folk art (i.e. wicker lampshades).

No tray system – all dishes are served to your table.
Barred windows and interior.

Unique composition of daylight lamps.

Flower shop with a great variety of plants from all over the world. In addition, a great variety of wrapping paper.

Old-fashioned bar near the canteen with the same workers as in the canteen.

Old-fashioned russian samovar in case you want some tea on lunch.

Surprisingly pleasant smell of flowers mixed with freshly mashed potatoes.
Unexpected location for a canteen – a dormitory between skyscrapers.

Colourful carpet on the wall.

Young diners.

Exceptional service for newcomers.

Food portions with a little bit extra.

School kids, who willingly show you the way to canteen.
Vintage interior.

A cash-lady using old school cash register.

Free art and fresh gossips.

A bar with nice service.

Talkative diners.

Enormous work of ceramics on the wall.

Red colour that makes a place look mysterious.

80’s style corner bar with glossy lamps and curved lines.

Flowers everywhere.

Students and quite intelectual discussions among them.

Vintage interior.

Long conveyer for dirty dishes.

The students in the canteen are open for discussions about physics, law, economics or communication science.

A microwave oven for heating food you brought from home (though heating your food is not allowed, but when the staff doesn't see...)

Radio announcing about the situation on the roads for drivers.

No queues in the canteen during lectures.
Visually handicapped and deaf people work in the canteen.

Silence during lunch time.

The location is hard to find.

Big tables if you want to have lunch with a group.

A lot of artificial flowers.

Sincere concern of a cook: „How come you’re not eating soup? That is not healthy.
Availability of alcohol.

Great window view.

Enormous mirror near the exit.

Lithuanian soap operas on LCD TV (it is also possible to see the view of the other canteen hall on the TV).

White tablecloths that enrich the dining experience.

Awarded a Diploma for good service.
Very talkative canteen worker.

Most of the things in the canteen are marked with „Vilniaus degtinė“ logos.

Everything is new.

Canteen is full of flowers. Orchids included.

Various types of dishes, even after lunch time.

Cosy interior.
Disco for people over 30 on weekends and disco style attributes in the canteen.

Two huge palms near the window.

Enormous picture on the wall. Painted poppies could open a discussion about a landscape painting.

Background music (only Russian).

A corner bar with all facilities.

Lots of tables at the windows.
Microwave oven – you can use it to warm up your own food.

Company store selling sweets at the same place.

Easy to read sign of WC – you will never have to ask for the way.

A smell of chocolate and cheap candies (and somehow cheap portions of ice-cream too).

Fan-page on the Internet.

Sophisticated food that one won't find in other canteens (escalopes, Chicken Kiev, etc.).

Saltoniškės, Vilnius
Opening hours: UŽDARYTA / CLOSED

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Saltoniškių g. 58
The canteen located in the Institute of culture, philosophy, and art is one of those that impresses a lot. It is difficult to define what impresses the most - is it the sovietic interior mixed with blood-red curtains and ceramics or is it really tasty food for a reasonable price? We perfectly recall both advantages. After our visit to canteen we receved news, that now it's closed.











Enormous work of ceramics on the wall.

Red colour that makes a place look mysterious.

80’s style corner bar with glossy lamps and curved lines.

Flowers everywhere.

Students and quite intelectual discussions among them.

The Institute of culture, philosophy, and art is established in Saltoniskiu Street, in an old (probably the architecture of the building reminds the time of Stalin) building. Six plates hang over the old wooden door of this building. One of them informs about a canteen-cafe hidden somewhere in the corridors.
As I opened the door of the canteen, I realized it was not a traditional place to eat at all. The room was gloomy, even though it was illuminated by candle shaped lamps. In addition to that, the windows and the shelves were all decorated with red fabric. I secretly thought of a Moulen Rouge style parties that could take place here after working hours behind these closed red curtains.

A ceramic panel hanging on the wall should be described in details. A lot of little clay tubes remind a traditional Lithuanian instrument called "skudučiai" (a linear flute type with several closed pipes). The whole canteen is decorated using this motif, so you can compete with your friends counting all these little tubes. I also found plenty of pots with flowers in every corner and on every window sill in this canteen.

To sum up, this canteen is cosy, diners are quite young (however, sometimes you can also sit and eat next to a lecturer or a manager working somewhere nearby), and the crocheted tissues nostalgically remind us grandparents home.

We were eating cepelinai (a traditional Lithuanian dish, a type of dumpling made from grated potatoes and usually stuffed with minced meat) during our visit. It was great: cepelinai were well- boiled, the meat inside was well-prepared, there were enough of spices. Cepelinai were served with a mushroom sauce. Colleagues who were eating here earlier revealed that a dish from potatoes Kugel or a cow tongue stewed in sour cream are also great choices for lunch.

We tried apple compote. It was a bit warm, but smelled like vanilla, and was sweet and sour. Compliments for it!

Elvyra, valgyklos vadovė

How many years do you work in this canteen?
In this place? For three years.
And how long do you work in canteen business at all?
I work in canteens since 1981.
Are you the director of this canteen?
Yes, I am.
What is your responsibility here?
Well, everything is included. I am a shareholder and a director in one. I coordinate work, people and catering. That's what I do.
How many people are working in the canteen at the moment?
9 people are working. Three cooks, one assistant, a cleaning lade, an accountant and me.
How many people come for lunch per day?
It depends. There can be a hundred, a hundred and twenty. There used to 150 people sometime ago. People come not only from the institute, but also from the offices nearby, residents of the Žvėrynas district, too.
Do you cook all the dishes just for that day?
Yes. As we have many clients, we can presume the quantities we need to cook. So we usually don't have any food left for the next day.
Could you tell us anything from the history of the canteen? Perhaps you know something?
No, we don't know. As we came here, everything was equipped. There used to be a school long time ago back in Soviet times. And the building used to look better, the lamps used to be nice-looking. The turnover used to be huge, because lot of people used to come hear to learn something and used to eat in this canteen.
What is the most popular dish here?
As always: balandėliai (cabbage roll with meat), cepelinai (traditional Lithuanian dish, a type of dumpling made from grated potatoes and usually stuffed with minced meat). They are most popular and one of the cheapest. Nowadays lots of clients eat half of a portion. For example, they take half of a portion of stewed pork or beef. And the same with soup. People just don't have money. There used to be less this kind of orders earlier. We cannot forbid that, we have to accept the situation. People choose places where they can eat cheaply.
How do you set the menu?
We change the menu everyday. We come early in the morning, or we decide what to cook the previous evening. We try to change something everyday, as we have the same clients everyday. Just when some kind of seminar is happening here, we have some new visitors. If you cook something new, naturally people buy it more often. If you cook the same everyday, they buy less. Earlier there used to be a menu set for the whole week. You always cooked the same on every Thursday, for example. But we don't do that anymore.
Do you recognize your visitors?
We don't know their names, but they feel here like at home. They are like our friends.
What is the most important issue in your kitchen?
The most important thing that the food would be good and tasty, that visitors would be satisfied, that they could lunch quickly and they wouldn't have to wait. Everyone comes and wants to get hot dishes quickly.
Perhaps you try to cook using ecological products?
At the moment it is difficult to make experiments. As people try to eat cheaply, they can eat only soup sometimes. Everything is based on money, they want cheap dishes.
What is your favourite dish?
Sandwiches. I could eat only sandwiches and not to cook at all.
Do you cook at home too?
Yes. My family likes me cooking food. They want home made food.
What would you do if not working as a cook?
I would like some work related with organizing, travels, organizing events maybe. I would like to go somewhere, do something, I wouldn't like to sit at home. I need changes all the time. I am the Twins, so I need something new all the time.
Perhaps you could tell some interesting stories from the canteen life?
I started as a washing lady and then step by step I became a cook, then a confectioner, then a barmaid. I did it all by myself. As I finished a school, I entered a trade school and started to work. So my career began. I work in a canteen in one school, later in Pylimo street. We were frying chicken there.
Do you know a cook named Jamie Oliver? Maybe you try his recipes?
No, not yet. Perhaps we are too old. We are fast food canteen. We don't have time for those recipes. But the dishes he cooks look really good. I saw and episode him chopping outside, picking up herbs.
Would you like to add something more?
We used to work in one factory that was supplying food for a supermarket in all Lithuania earlier. When we came to work here, it's different, the amounts are smaller. We used to work in shifts, in nighttime, too. We used to make tones of salads in huge pots. We used to mix it by hands.

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Shorty 25-4-2011 17:22:23
Superior thinking demonstrated above. Thnkas!

Chup 6-11-2009 17:37:08
check it out :)

ullabul 30-10-2009 22:14:06
I like this project a lot.

Ween 30-10-2009 21:05:07
Hallo ! I like this canteen a lot:)

Majo 30-10-2009 21:04:34
Please give me more infos!!!! I want to go there:):)

Heinz 30-10-2009 21:02:04
When is the next Kompotas Party?

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