Malgosia Minta in front of yellow concrete wall.
Malgosia Minta in front of yellow concrete wall.
© Jessica Nadziejko

Expert of the week

Malgosia Minta

Warsaw-based food writer, photographer and obsessive world traveller.

Updated on Mar 08, 2024 | World of Mouth team

Malgosia Minta is a journalist, food writer and photographer based in Warsaw, Poland, covering gastronomy for Vogue Poland and other publications. She's an obsessive traveller, a butter eater, wine lover and active Instagrammer. She also runs a podcast on restaurants and works as a creative consultant for hospitality projects. She's also worked on cookbooks, including her own.

Please introduce yourself to our members.

My name is Malgosia Minta, but most people know me as Minta (the Polish language is beautiful but tricky in pronunciation). I am a food & travel journalist and photographer, covering those two topics for Vogue Poland. Aside from that I run a podcast on restaurants and work as a creative consultant for hospitality projects. In recent years I’ve also had fun working on a few books, including my own but also photo shooting books for acclaimed chefs and bakers.

Tell us about your current project.

My next few months will turn around two big projects – the second book of Laurel Kratochvila, which I have the pleasure to photoshoot, and the next edition of an annual special issue of Vogue Poland dedicated to travel, where you will find my articles and photos.

@ Courtney Brandt

Tell us about the restaurant scene in your city.

I am based in Warsaw, the capital city of Poland. It’s a very vibrant, dynamic, and evolving city, and in recent years its inhabitants definitely have learnt to dine out. What I enjoy most are casual places with no fuss but high-quality food, focusing on local and seasonal ingredients. I couldn't live without coffee or good bread and luckily Warsaw boasts a lot of great specialty coffee shops and artisanal bakeries.

"I couldn't live without coffee or good bread and luckily Warsaw boasts a lot of great specialty coffee shops and artisanal bakeries."

What are your three favorite restaurants in Warsaw?

That’s the toughest question – as it all depends on the occasion and mood. If you would come to visit me in Warsaw, for fine dining I would take you to Hub Praga, a fine dining place still a bit under the radar, presenting the finest Polish ingredients in dishes full of flavor and freshness. For natural wine and snacks – Bar Rascal, and for casual food – Bibenda.

What’s a new restaurant or hidden gem in Warsaw that you think is doing great things?

Hub Praga – the fine dining place I mentioned, that uses the finest Polish ingredients in dishes full of flavor and freshness.

What’s your favorite kind of restaurant and why?

I like smart, honest food. It can be a casual spot or fine dining, it doesn't matter. I am not a fan of "form bigger than essence" dishes or dishes that are too gimmicky or overly processing the ingredients, losing their true essence and flavor.

What are your three favorite food cities and your favorite restaurants in those cities?

That changes with time. Now, I would say:

Mexico City, for its vibrant nature and sense of exotics, with the must-visit and world-class restaurant Quintonil, with cool bars (686 Bar), with laid back, beautiful spots like Rosetta.

Copenhagen. Some 15-10 years ago it was the IT city when it came to food. Now, though, I think it will have a second wave of interesting talents entering the gastronomy game. Favorite spots: Noma – because it was a very formative restaurant for me as a diner and as a writer. Seks – for a non-Danish breakfast and Juno – for the best Danish breakfast with cheese buns and cardamom buns. Apotek 57 for brunch. Iluka for seafood. Koan – for crazy beautiful Korean meets Nordic fine dining.

San Sebastian. For all the casual bars like Ganbarra, but also for the fine dining, like Elkano (in Getaria), Amelia and Etxebarri (not in San Sebastian, but a short drive from it).

Athens. A city that was my latest "discovery" or crush. With traditional tavernas (but sometimes smartly updated with wine lists) like Taverna Oikonomou, sleek neobistros (LS and Sia), wine bars you don’t want to leave - both for wine, music and food (Pharaoh)

© Thomas Barker

What is your favorite dish and where is your favorite restaurant to have it?

That’s impossible to answer. I’m in the lucky position of being able to try out a lot of amazing stuff. But there are a few very dear or special dishes to me: like the hay-clay baked potato with cultured butter by Ana Roš at Hisa Franko, or marigold flower tempura with whisky and egg yolk sauce at Noma, the whole grilled langoustine at Etxebarri or oca tartelette at Kjolle or fig leaf risotto at Lido 84. This list goes on and on.

Who is an up-and-coming chef you are keeping an eye on?

Chiara Pavan and Francesco Brutto of Venissa, Juan Luis Martínez of Mérito, Lima; Pia Salazar & Alejandro Chamorro, Nuema, Quito.

Who is a food expert whose restaurant recommendations you’d like to see?

Nicholas Gill, food writer and reporter

Rafa Tonon, journalist, lecturer and writer

Atsushi Tanaka (one of the most dining-out chefs I know)

Find Malgosia Minta on Instagram: @minta_eats

Listen to her podcast (in Polish): W pogoni za kolacja

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