A Restaurant of Many Faces

The large window of the Cru gives to the highly frequented Viru street in Tallinn Old Town. Entering the place is much more difficult: walking into a narrow backyard from the street and climbing the stairs to an equally narrow hallway. Everything about it brings to mind small Alsatian winery restaurants. The Cru offers the signature cuisine of one of Estonia’s most renowned chefs Dmitri Haljukov. It was classical fine dining barely a couple of years ago, but has since taken a turn to increasingly lower levels of processing. The chef has proven himself. He no longer needs to demonstrate his mastery of the techniques (there are no doubts left) and can focus on selecting the ingredients and bringing out the best in them. The Viking stew bowl, served in an egg-shaped ceramic bowl, is a dish of stewed mussels and crispy-fried cubed trout with skin on, brought together with a green curry and seashore herbs sauce. One of the chef’s favourite activities as of late is taking well-known dishes and preparing them with his own approach. Despite the name of the restaurant, wine is relegated to the status of a deserving partner to the food, no more. The different faces of the restaurant take shape in the different dining halls. The impressive dining hall with its tall ceilings, the intimate back room for smaller groups and a private cellar hall for larger celebrations. Whatever the milieu, the restaurant offers an excellent digestif to round out the evening – a local brewery’s hop schnapps. This eau de vie of a kind brings you all the way back to the feeling evoked by the way in.