There are places you just have to know. Places that you should have gone to a long time ago to prevent yourself from being embarrassed. I heard about “U Ryśka” in Zakopane many times. From those who have been visiting this region for many years and ever since dining on good, homemade Polish food right there. From the locals who know that you can still eat good at U Ryśka other than in many other places in Zakopane. When we included Rysiek’s on our list of places worth visiting in Zakopane, no other place brought so many emotions and generated so many comments!!! If you haven’t been there yet, be sure to check it out because it’s not only a place with good food, but one of the most intriguing places in Poland after all.


You can say that the visit at Rysiek’s starts already when you’re walking the Oswald Balzer’s street, at the foot of Nosal towards Jaszczurówka. Suddenly, you see a huge orange fork and knife with writing that will make you smile for the first time…


Zakopane, u Ryśka, where to eat in Zakopane, u Ryśka pod Nosalem


I have to admit that I’ve seen them many times while walking in the area but never expected them to promote something actually worth checking out! This time we know that it’s about the famed Rysiek’s and so we follow the arrow. We pass by a house closest to the street and find Manna guesthouse with the cult eatery located in the second row under ul. Oswalda Balzera 17E. It’s still empty at noon on Monday when we come but fortunately it’s open.


The interior may be wooden and kind of highland-style but it seems to have an oldschool feel to it. Some records on the walls with music that’s not quite traditional. We sit down and Maks quickly spots a chest with toys. Well – didn’t expect to find it here!


Zakopane, u Ryśka, where to eat in Zakopane, u Ryśka pod Nosalem

Zakopane, u Ryśka, where to eat in Zakopane, u Ryśka pod Nosalem


Menu is on the table but we don’t manage to have a look at it prior to ordering! An old lady emerges from the kitchen (it must be the grandma!) and in a voice you cannot oppose to, announces that there’s no need to look at the menu, that there’s this and this and that available and what do we want then??? We order kwaśnica and borscht with dumplings and tomato soup for Maks – grandma comes with an idea for half a portion for him without even being asked. Łukasz goes for a sparked pork chop with potatoes and salad (PLN 18) while I take dumplings with blueberries (PLN 12). We sit and wait while I go through the menu. It turns out that… we ordered completely different meals!


That’s because at Rysiek’s, borscht is called beetroot water and smoked meat stock with dumplings (PLN 6) while kwaśnica is a smoked ribs stock with the ribs, grule (potatoes) and feet-stampeded sauerkraut aka kwaśnica (PLN 7). The sparked pork chop can be found in Pig section, obviously with grule and a set of weeds (PLN18). It’s only the start since the menu also includes Sole fish, treated with salt, battered in what a hen lays and horsebread beaten with a hammer, obviously with grule and a set of weeds (PLN 17)! Plenty of meals come with a description ‘Grandma likes it’ or ‘the way Rysiek likes it’. I can’t get enough of the menu – I think I haven’t seen such an original one yet!


Zakopane, u Ryśka, where to eat in Zakopane, u Ryśka pod Nosalem, kwaśnica, what to eat in the mountains


We quickly get the soups! I already know why do the skiers from Nosal come here in the winter – you get hot, homemade food almost instantly. The tomato soup is like at my grandma’a, kwaśnica is fragrant (even though Łukasz prefers the one made with mutton stock) same goes for the intense borscht with dumplings. A good start. Like at your mom’s or grandma’s. But I’m still waiting for the main course to see.


Zakopane, u Ryśka, where to eat in Zakopane, u Ryśka pod Nosalem, sparked pork chop, homemade food

Zakopane, u Ryśka, where to eat in Zakopane, u Ryśka pod Nosalem, blueberry dumplings, where to go for dumplings


The portion of the pork chop is huge! You can really stuff yourself with it – a huge piece of meat in a tasty batter, a pile of potatoes and salads. Good! Perfect for a big hunger! My dumplings tempt me ever since I read that you have to be careful because they spit the juice around that you might need some safety clothing while eating them! And it’s true! Blueberry dumplings are amazing, full of stuffing, whole fruits spitting juice (watch out for your clothes!). Just perfect! I love them like this and it’s not often I have occasions to eat them!


We read the menu a bit more, the dictionary for the difficult terms and we get on the road to Cracow. Did you know that the train from Zakopane to Cracow takes 4 hours??? It’s good that our bellies are full after a homemade lunch! Oh, unfortunately Rysiek wasn’t around during our visit so we definitely have to come back!!!


Zakopane, u Ryśka, where to eat in Zakopane, u Ryśka pod Nosalem



PS. no receipt – they don’t give receipts. But a large meal for us and Maks with drinks included was about PLN 50-60.




(Marzanna guesthouse)

ul. Oswalda Balzera 17E

34-501 Zakopane

tel. 48 18 20 62 4 61