Guest Post by Hadley
I went to Prague in mid-February of this year during the tail end of my Northern/Eastern European adventure. I had a few friends (and friends of friends) who had previously studied in Prague so I made sure to contact them to learn about the go-to places. The two people I got in touch with (a preppy girl from a small liberal arts school and my old roommate’s hippie stoner friend from Colorado) gave me several ideas, but both lists included U Sudu. After Google translating the website I found the name “U Sudu” to mean “the barrel” wine bar (I know bits and pieces of many languages; unfortunately Czech is not one of them).
I arrived to Prague to nippy negative temperatures, but despite the cold, Prague was one of the cities I was most looking forward to on my trip as all of my friends who had visited said it was “sooo cool and dirt cheap!” However, this was coming from twenty-something Americans with bottomless wallets, so I had to see for myself.
Luckily, the hostel we stayed at was affiliated with three other hostels in the city, all part of a pub crawl that started every night at 9 pm and lasted 4 hours. I highly advise doing a pub crawl in any city you travel to the first night, because you meet some interesting characters and go to multiple bars in the process, getting a good feel for the city during the walks in-between. We set out for the night meeting at the Mosaic House hostel for the pub crawl, and after the initial hour of drinking and the requisite “meet the other travelers” spiel, liquid coats were donned for the walk to the first bar.
10 minutes later we arrived at a hole in the wall that if you were just walking by you’d think nothing of, but I happened to look up and see the words “U Sudu” above the door in cursive. Without even trying, I ended up somewhere I had already wanted to go.
From first appearance it looked like any regular bar, but after following the guide to another bar area in the building we found it to be packed with people smoking and drinking wine around wooden barrels. Down another staircase were more locals in a small room drinking and smoking, which is legal indoors in the Czech Republic, and through a series of hallways and rooms we found a mix of tourists and locals all doing the same. As you can gather, the ambiance is very low-key (except, perhaps, for the room with the Foosball tables), but be forewarned: it’s almost impossible to not lose your friends once you make that inevitable first trip to the bathroom.
Overall I found Prague to be a great place, but because of the recent influx of tourists in the past few years it is not as “cool and dirt cheap” as I’d been told. If you do find yourself in Prague, though, make sure stop at U Sudu for the relatively inexpensive drinks, chill local atmosphere, and unique labyrinthine layout.
Prague 110 00
+420 222 232 207
Do you know of any local spots in Prague to go mingle with locals? Let us know below in the comments!