When 23-year-old Jan Vlachynský and his friend decided to open a bar in their local town they hedged their bets on originality and customer service. Seven years later it seems their project paid off bigtime. He now co-owns five bars across Brno whose distinct character has not only made them popular among locals, but has been covered by prestigious outlets such as the New York Times and The Guardian. I popped down to the Moravian capital to ask him about the secret behind his success.
Czech restaurant and hotel owners are struggling with a major shortage of skilled workers, the daily Hospodářské noviny reported on Wednesday. With the tight labour market and growing number of new restaurants, both finding and keeping employees has become increasingly more complicated and some businesses have even been forced to close down.
It’s almost a year to the day since the Czech Republic finally moved to ban smoking in bars, cafes, and restaurants. And while the ban is still a live issue with sporadic attempts to change the law, a survey commissioned by Charles University shows support is still strong among Czechs and suggests that there are a lot of myths about its impact.
A new project run by a team of foreigners living in Prague aims to map ethnic restaurants in the city. The Czech Friendly team pinpoints authentic family-run foreign restaurants, pop-ups and food trucks and present them through a printed map and a mobile app. It also collects the best authentic recipes and presents the life stories of the places’ owners. I spoke about the project with Ekaterina Kokkalou, who is a part of the Czech Friendly team:
The police in Prague dealt with over 1,200 violations of the smoking ban in pubs and restaurants in the first month after it was introduced at the end of May, a spokesperson said on Thursday. In over 1,000 cases the smokers agreed to stop on the spot, while fines were levied in around 200 cases. The average fine amounted to CZK 370.
A hundred years ago there were dozens of small brewing houses across Bohemia and while the majority no longer exist, there's one that continues brewing its own dark lager even today. A pub, restaurant and brewery in Prague called U Fleků which is as quintessential to the tourist experience – at least as far as beer hunters are concerned – as seeing Prague Castle and Charles Bridge.
On Tuesday night, smokers in pubs and restaurants around the Czech Republic enjoyed their very last cigarette. On May 31, observed around the world as anti-tobacco day, tough anti-smoking legislation which took years to push through finally came into effect, banning smoking in bars and restaurants as well as public places such as theatres and cinemas. So what do Czech pub owners think of the new legislation?