Brunch In The Transylvanian Countryside

Filed Under: Travel

To start off our second full day in Romania, we headed out to the countryside of Transylvania, and the tiny hamlet of Veseud.

I can’t remember where I first heard of these Saturday brunches, but I was instantly enamored by the idea. The brunch moves from place to place during the season, so different towns and villages get some additional exposure.

Transylvanian Brunch Review

Brunches (and other local culinary events) are hosted by Eat Local, in partnership with Asociatia My TransylvaniaTickets were 21 Euro each, and were easily purchased online and downloaded to my phone.

We arrived a bit early, so spent some time walking around the fortified church in the center of Veseud (seemingly all these Saxon villages have a fortified church in the center).

There weren’t any signs, or really even signs of life when we arrived, but about 5 minutes before the event was supposed to start other guests started arriving. The brunch was hosted at a cute guest house, and everyone entered through the side gate.

The yard opened up to the fields in the valley below, and we had absolutely perfect autumn weather. Tables, benches, and hay bales dotted the garden, providing seating for the brunch.

Also how cute is this outhouse? (actual toilets were available in the main building)

The event hosts made a point of introducing themselves to us (and all the other guests as they arrived). We were the only English-speaking attendees, which is apparently quite common. It was explained that typically there are a handful of German tourists, but that for this brunch all the other guests were Romanian.

So they very graciously translated everything just for us.

After a quick introduction, the buffet was opened. Coffee, tea, and lemonade were set out near the garden.

And then a plentiful spread, with a focus on local vegetables, was laid out in one of the buildings.

There were some hot dishes as well:

And several types of breads and pastries:

I have no idea what most of these foods were, and was hesitant to try many of the non-obvious ones given that it wasn’t necessarily easy to tell what might have grains involved, so I’m unfortunately going to have to let the pictures speak for themselves.

The presentation was really beautiful, though it’s worth noting that nothing was actively replenished, and most people were making extremely generous plates.

So more than half of the items were gone by the time we went through the queue, which isn’t a reflection on the organizers at all (obviously they can’t police buffet portions), but it may be worth positioning yourself near the front of the group if you want to have the best selection.

After brunch, some crafts and activities were set out for little kids, and a group of children from Veseud performed some traditional songs and dances.

It was all very cute, and we were happy to spend a few hours enjoying the sunshine, and seeing how happy everyone was with the experience.

Bottom line

This was a lovely afternoon, and I’m so glad we went. Everything we tried was tasty, and people couldn’t have been more friendly. I was very impressed by the logistics (including the easy online ticketing), and would be interested in checking out some of Eat Local’s other events beyond brunch.

But brunch was great.

  1. you all are absolutely selling me on a trip to Transylvania. I’d long had a blanket policy of avoiding all of Romania due to Bucharest’s absolutely terrible reputation, but this looks lovely (and I’ve heard great things about Transylvania from others as well over the years). Keep up the good work.

  2. I just returned home last night from two weeks in Romania. Absolutely loved the food, and even the wine. The elderflower water is wonderful with meals. The breads are outstanding especially with the huge variety of homemade jellies and jams. It was not unusual for you to be the only ones from USA. I encountered fewer than ten people from USA during my time, and I traveled all around Transylvania and Bucovina, as well as Cluj and Bucharest, which I found to be an amazing surprise of “A City of Contrasts” which is how it bills itself.

  3. Very nice! The place where the brunch was hosted is actually a local guesthouse (called ‘Veseud 11’). I stayed there once overnight some two years ago in autumn and I was really impressed myself as well by the lovely renovated and refurbished house, welcoming hosts, and great quality food. Some cute newborn puppies in the garden were an additional plus! I can thus absolutely second it for those seeking an authentic place place to stay in the Transylvanian countryside.

  4. @Jason what you mean with “Bucharest’s absolutely terrible reputation”?

    Sure, I’m the first to admit it’s not a city many people instantly fall in love with like classical Central/Eastern European cities like Budapest. It’s an odd mix between buildings of different eras, some beautiful (Baroque, Brâncovenesc, Art Deco), some ugly (communist, rampant post-1990s construction) which makes it difficult to grasp. Traffic can be hell too, and the city might seem gloomy when visiting on a dark winter day. That said, there are lots of amazing museums, some beautiful buildings, interesting history and lovely off-the-beaten-track neighbourhoods for a stroll to experience how the city felt and looked like before communists ruined the place (with many old villas converted to hip coffee bars, restaurants and pubs). Also, the city has a great food and cultural scene.

    It’s not an easy city and might not be everyone’s cup of tea, yet for those who do a bit of research and venture outside of the touristy old town, it can really be a positive surprise.

    (PS. Even though I work/live in the city I’m not saying these things out of chauvinism as I’m neither born here, nor am I a Romanian national!)

  5. I don’t know why everyone is so surprised by how nice Romania appears. I’ve been fortunate to have a long-time Romanian friend and have visited his family a handful of times. It’s a beautiful country with great food and drink, warm hospitality, and some unique cultural aspects. Just go with it and have fun. There’s more to Europe than England and Italy. I just wish travel writers weren’t so patronizing in writing about the place – as if they’re surprised people the place isn’t completely grey and covered in graffiti. Lots of miles doesn’t equal being a good traveler.

  6. @Romanianflyer – I appreciate your perspective and thank you for sharing it. I’ve just known many people who have gone there and come back with stories / impressions that were not appealing. I’m happy to take a look into it, but you definitely hint at some of the negative input I’ve received over the years.

    Regardless, this series of articles, and others I have seen from other sources, have definitively put Romania/Transylvania on my list of places, so I consider that a good thing overall.

  7. I’m all for this Trip however I wonder the reception one would receive if one was black. I’m not making blanket statements about certain countries but it would be foolish and naive to ignore the issue completely.

  8. @Adams9802, there’s a black boy in the picture of dancing children. It looks like he is smiling. Unless he is a romanian boy wearing blackface i think there are no problems for POC in Romania.

  9. Romania is a great travel destination. Here are 2 great restaurants in Bucharest – Farm to Table and more upmarket cuisine at the Artiste. Great decor at the latter!

    Give it a try if you’re still there!

  10. @Largo

    That boy is likely Roma or similar; definitely not black. Central and Eastern Europe as a whole does have a tendency towards intolerance and racism (lived in Sofia and Chisinau)

  11. The more I see from this trip the more I feel I need a trip to Romania urgently 🙂
    It looks like a very interesting place to me.

  12. @Chiguy1979, I think it’s because so many people in the West have been told and also been brought up on movies that depict Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union as dark and foreboding places full of bad people. Lol.. nothing could be further from the truth.
    And someone has to bring up colour… why?? Typical Americans creating a situation where there isn’t any. You people will never be united because you don’t want it.

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