53.54° N, 113.49° W
10117 101 ST.
Restaurants come and go. Even the most hyped-up eateries are lucky to live a decade, and anything past that becomes an institution. That’s what makes Bistro Praha a monument linking old downtown with new downtown.
It serves continental classics that the modern eater seems to have lost all appetite for in the era of beer-can chicken and truffle popcorn—except here, where the tartare and schnitzel is as good as it was when it opened in 1977. The continuity was interrupted for two years after a fire destroyed its former home in the Kelly Ramsey Building on Rice Howard Way.
This photo, taken on a chilly night shortly after it reopened in 2011, shows how not just the decor but the mood was reassembled two blocks away, down to the mural that’s an exact replica of the one that perished in the fire. Even the chairs, tables and antique lamps are nearly the same. It’s still the late-night sanctuary for the opera and theatre crowd, too. And the classical music hasn’t waned.
Sometimes, things are just as good the second time around.