Whom we support in lockdown: from coffee shops to bookstores
Off-days in Russia continue, and although they will soon be over in Moscow and St. Petersburg, downtime is still bad for small businesses. The editors of Afisha Daily tell us about favorite establishments and stores worth helping on a remote basis. Some you can support, even without living in Moscow and St. Petersburg.
Editor of “Music” section, head of special projects
“Clean Plate Society.”
One of the best St. Petersburg restaurants from Kirill Ivanov from SBHR. There, on top of everything else, bombastic delivery. A box from “Society” is enough for two people for three days. Delivery can be ordered on Nov. 8 here.
“White Apple and Noise.
Two sister publishers, White Apple and Noise, publish the best foreign books on music, gaming, and pop culture in general. They are the ones who translated Reynolds and told the Nintendo story in Russian.
The best bookstore for kids of any age: books by Tove Jansson and Eduard Limonov, Samokat, and No Kidding Publishers are sold here. And it was here that the book’s presentation by five-year-old Fedor Kiselev “Seventy raccoons and two broads” took place – where else? There is delivery in Russia and around the world, and also online courses for teenagers and parents.
“Boomkniga, NoAge and Cloudberry.
It is better to support all the independent book publishers: in addition to the pandemic, they were hit by a wild rise in prices for everything from paper and ink to pallets. But I would like to single out three St. Petersburg publishers: Bumkniga, which publishes the best comics in Russian. Norge, which grew out of the children’s Polandria, and Cloudberry, which publishes Robert Capa and Man Ray books.
editor of the beauty section
The most brutal massage studio back in that quarantine came up with a take-home service. And you can order it again – a massage without leaving the couch costs 4000 rubles.
The cosmetics store came up with the beauty takeaway format during the lockdown. At the entrance to the beauty store on Tverskaya, you will be met by a consultant who will help you choose cosmetics. There is a 15% discount on any purchase on the day of pickup.
Freckles, a hairdressing salon for zoomers, has made season tickets. By buying such a certificate for 2, 3, or 5 haircuts, you will save money, as it is cheaper in bulk, and secondly, financially support the team during the closing period.
The favorite bar of the Taganka residents launched the delivery and developed a new menu for this case. Quiche with three kinds of cheese, baked eggplant, vegan chili, and several types of pot pie can be picked up by pickup or delivery.
food section editor
A small production of natural fabrics in a conventionally homemade style: cozy dresses, pajamas to leave the house in, over-size suits. The number of things of this or that model is rigidly tied to how much fabric is available. There are warm items, too – vests and sweatshirts.
“Do the culture.”
A small but proud cooperative. They make vegan hot dogs (5 kinds!) and pour banana cider in liter bottles. You can order by phone and pick it up at “Chistye Prudy” or send a courier to pick up the food.
A coffee shop in the front door is a dream of St. Petersburg visitors. The coffee is brewed at Catherine the Brewer, and they also make cocoa on specialty beans. The taste is mind-blowing! Get cherry pie with your coffee, and you’ll be as thrilled as Agent Cooper.
The owner firstly tried dozens of ramen bars in Japan, and then he went around Moscow ramen bars and understood that there was nothing similar. He had to find a technologist who reproduced the Japanese technology for making noodles, which helped him digest himself. After a gallon bowl of ramen, it’s easy to have dessert (and maybe more than one).
Store with Italian yarn on bobbins. The most valuable thing is sock yarn in colors that don’t repeat from bringing to bringing.
associate editor of the “Cinema” department
Vitaly Terletsky is a friend of mine, so I want to support him primarily. He is the leading independent author of comics right now in Russia, but due to the cancellation/postponement of several comics festivals (“Comic-Con,” “Bubble Fest”), all his fall novelties (Vitaly is extremely productive) were left without essential distribution venues. As a genuinely self-made author, Terletsky sells comics through his website. There are not only such classics as “Russians Unite with Crocodiles and Attack Europe” (an alternate history) and “Yeltsin’s Fall from the Bridge” (an adaptation of the Wikipedia article of the same name) but also novelties: for example, the fanfic on the manga “Jojo,” where the main character suddenly appears to be a Petersburg webcam model, living in 2025.
Meat Me Pita Bar
A small café on Shabolovka makes excellent Middle Eastern and Southern European style street food – contrary to the name, and there are vegetarian options on the menu. Not all dishes are available for delivery (for instance, you can try shakshuka only on the spot), but you can provide yourself with gyros, falafel, and the best local french fries even during the lockdown.
Mr & Mrs. Right
One of Russia’s first barbershops has grown into a robust chain of beauty salons where everyone will feel good, regardless of gender or sex. Posters with David Bowie and the universe’s leading horror characters perfectly complement the perfect haircuts during which you will be served coffee and whiskey and manicures.
The brand has had its ups and downs, but I wish the store would stay with us forever: few have a flair for exciting niche brands like the chain’s owner Hayk Sargsyan. Extraordinary perfumes, cutting-edge grooming, the most unusual makeup – all this at Cosmotheca. Before the lockdown, there were also parties and events devoted to distinctive brands – we want to believe that we will come back to this.
Russian brand for “travelers and dreamers” makes basic comfortable clothes – hoodies, T-shirts, pants – in pleasant complex colors and with warm phrases, such as “Home is where the heart is.” Now the brand’s store at “Bread Factory” is closed, but things can be delivered by courier or by mail – there is a promo code for any order, and if you buy from 500 rubles, they give you socks as a gift.
The snack bar from the team of the not unknown bar “Zaliv” has table soccer, a large mosaic panel with the sun and, in fact, roe deer, and simple, understandable food – sandwiches, dumplings, soup, and borscht. So far, only the last item can be appreciated because of the lockdown – the institution works on a takeaway basis and treats with pancakes, shawarma, and hot mulled wine.
The opening date of the iconic cafe’s new location came on another lockdown, which is a shame. In the ’60s, people used to come here from Moscow, especially to drink tea from bags, which was strange at that time, and listen to nuclear physicists’ conversations. Yuri Medvedev writes about it specifically in his novel “The Wedding March,” The atmosphere can be seen in the film “Nine Days of One Year.” The new version of Neutrino’s bakes and sells bread serves desserts and sandwiches, and brews coffee and mittens. If you’re going to Dubna and the surrounding area on the weekend, stop in here for a drink and a snack – it’s now the best place in town that runs a takeaway.
children’s section editor
“The Gift in Odintsovo.
This is a clean and cozy teahouse by the highway. Two chefs are responsible for the menu – a Turk and an Uzbek. Correspondingly, the “Dar” serves Turkish and Uzbek cuisine. Here you can find the richest Lagman and the best baklava on cream, which melts in the mouth like an overripe peach. The guys smile a lot and seem to be sincere. They readily share recipes and secrets of national cuisine. One drawback: all this happiness is possible only to take away in the lockdown, and “Dar” works strictly until 9 pm.
Modest craft, creativity, and hobby store on Rublevka. There are writing lessons, master-classes on making Christmas toys, and sketching. In O’Key House, there is a good choice of paints, albums, canvases, liners, fabric for patchwork, and even paper for scrapbooking.
editor of the “Money” section
Zanzibar, Yuzhnaya, Duty, Barca, and Cherry Orchard, a chain of liquor stores.
As the founders themselves say, their projects for several years now attract students, “connoisseurs of drunken spirits and cheap beer and artists of all varieties” with their democratic nature. Some make dates and get-togethers there, while others come for lectures, poetry readings, and other events. Today, these places are in danger of closing and not opening during the lockdown, but you can support the guys after the lockdown is over.
This store opened back in the early 2000s and has become a center of attraction for all Moscow intellectuals. Its assortment is strikingly different from that presented in chain stores, and there you can always find new releases from almost all independent and major publishers. Before lockdown, you could endlessly wander between the racks and find exciting and inspiring books. This is not available, but you can order them “to go” in the community group and thereby support the independent book trade.