Sunday, 19 December 2021

Split Gastroadvent at Chops Grill Celebrates Prosciutto, Joy, and Radio Journalists

December 19, 2021 - Split Gastroadvent at Chops Grill featured an impressive culinary display of steak and prosciutto-inspired dishes as radio journalists were honored on Sunday. 

Radio journalists and representatives of the tourist boards and project partners lit the fourth Gastroadvent candle, decorating the wreath made this year by artist Tonka Alujević. Along with the herbs of the Mediterranean, the wreath represents a lifebuoy, which Tonka says is a maritime object that serves to save a man who, for various reasons, is helpless in the sea and is in mortal danger. And that is exactly the health and political position we are in at the moment." 


Gastroadvent is a unique event that has promoted the Mediterranean diet for decades through a fusion of nutrition, gastronomy, and tourism. Thanks to the engagement and participation of dedicated journalists, who continue to bring light to Split, the event persistently shares scientific knowledge woven into gastronomic skills, the numerous health benefits of the Mediterranean diet, and the preparation of dishes from unique ingredients. The event's philosophy is to pass on the existing advantages to fellow citizens and offer them to guests.


The Mediterranean diet is not a closed and defined list of foods or a list of dishes that guarantee the sequence of this diet model. This is evident in the way UNESCO described the Mediterranean diet in 2010 when it recognized it as an intangible cultural heritage:

“Mediterranean nutrition is a set of skills, knowledge, practices, and traditions ranging from field to table, including crops, harvest, fishing, canning, processing, preparation and, in particular, food consumption. The Mediterranean diet is characterized by a dietary model that has remained unchanged over time and space and consists mainly of olive oil, cereals, fresh vegetables and fruits, moderate amounts of fish, milk, and meat, and many spices and moderate wine consumption, respecting the habits of individual communities. 

Today, science and the protagonists are not talking about the Mediterranean diet, but about the way of the Mediterranean diet, which is not just a list of food and dishes. The mentioned term covers a much broader spectrum, so this gathering of ours shows it as well," says the Gastroadvent organizer, Olja Martinić.


Inspired by prosciutto and herbs, the culinary table was designed and prepared by the head chef of Chops Grill, Ivan Nikolic, sous chef Toma Tripalo, and Pastry Chef Filipa Jurcević. The menu featured fritters with prosciutto, bomboline, classic cold prosciutto / cheese platters with homemade fig jam and pickled vegetables, baked fruit wrapped in prosciutto served with burrata mozzarella, homemade Žrnovo macaroni with prosciutto and truffles, steak bits with prosciutto and plums, monkfish with prosciutto, and much more. 




And for dessert, chocolate cake and grandma's cake with raspberries and almonds, to name a few. 

Rizman wine accompanied the delicious dishes. The philosophy of the Rizman winery is based on a long viticultural tradition and an ecological approach in the vineyard and cellar.

"With this ecological certificate, we give legitimacy to the original and autochthonous thing we strive for. Ever since Rizman's great-grandfather, who was not driven away from the hearth by the downy mildew and who returned and replanted the vine in the Neretva Valley, we have been tirelessly telling the story of the harmony of man and nature, stone and vine.


We are telling a story about sustainability, about the great potential of autochthonous Dalmatian and Croatian varieties, about our ecological vineyards from the youngest Croatian vineyard Komarna."

Split-Dalmatia County and the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board are avid supporters of Gastroadvent in Split, thus promoting the Mediterranean diet and local producers, entrepreneurs, and tourism workers.

The Split Tourist Board has worked hard to position the destination, harnessing a natural combination of history, gastronomy, and modernity, all to protect the components of the Mediterranean diet. The City of Split is determined to support projects that benefit its residents and demands guests after authentic experiences and new technological opportunities.

The Croatian Chamber of Commerce has advocated for years to encourage the representation of domestic products, and since 1997 has implemented the national project "Let's Buy Croatian." The project aims to increase the consumption of local products and thus support the economy. This project is of particular importance, emphasized by the director Joze Tomaš, and confirmed by the cooperation with Gastroadvent.

JU RERA S.D., as part of the project to establish innovative food products, has cooperated with primary and secondary schools in Split-Dalmatia County and stakeholders involved in producing or marketing Mediterranean food products and promoting the Mediterranean way of life. The project focuses on development opportunities and problem-solving related to popularizing the Mediterranean diet. The Mediterranean diet is a part of the Mediterranean identity inscribed in the UNESCO list of intangible cultural heritage. The project aims to strengthen research in this area following the UNESCO Convention on Mediterranean Nutrition, raise the quality of nutrition and life in 9 project partner countries, and promote the Mediterranean diet, which is recognized as the gold standard of proper nutrition with far-reaching health benefits.

Apart from the desire to involve as many people as possible and bring them closer to the importance of the Mediterranean diet in everyday life, as well as its impact on their health, the other goal of the project is to establish a standard in the Med Diet Declaration logo to classify Mediterranean areas. The ultimate goal of awarding the Declaration is to position Split-Dalmatia County as a desirable Mediterranean culinary region.

Split Gastroadvent is held every Advent Sunday at a new location, honoring a different group of journalists with new culinary creations at each event. 

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Monday, 15 November 2021

Split Winter Tourism at Chops Grill: Chopsylicious Menu, Weekend Music, Christmas Flair

November 15, 2021 - Is Split winter tourism that hard to achieve? Croatia's second-largest city and the star of summer loses its buzz as soon as the seasons change. But it doesn't have to be that way. Our new TCN series looks at the Split businesses working hard in winter to give locals, and visitors, the environment they deserve. Continuing this week with Split winter tourism at Chops Grill. 

I was lucky to be introduced to Jasmina, the owner of Chops Grill, in my early days with TCN. That is something I am grateful for to this day. Not only is Chops one of Split's best restaurants, maintaining quality and culinary consistency year-round, but Jasmina and I have built a wonderful relationship over the years - and she continues to inspire me season after season. 

Chops Grill is not your typical Split restaurant, but a superb steakhouse that rewards guests with the best cuts of meat, American influences, and, of course, a Dalmatian touch. Jasmina and Chops also know no season and are applauded for working tirelessly year-round, adapting their offer depending on the time of year, from unique 3-course menus to on-the-go breakfast sandwiches. 

But what motivates Jasmina, Chops, and sister cafe bar Paradiso to bring the best to guests even in the winter? 

Croatia and Split had booming year-round tourism in the 1980s until the outbreak of the Homeland War, but now the Dalmatian coast sleeps through the winter. Why do you think that is?

First of all, I think we were a more affordable destination at that time. I know this because when I worked for Sunčani Hvar back in 2006, we had half-board offers that were very cheap per person through agencies. 

There also aren't as many big tour operators today. Everything is done online. Tourists do their own research and don't need agencies or operators as much.

And because nothing is state-owned, the prices are much higher, even in the winter. 

Back in the 1980s, many hotels offered health tourism, spas, and indoor pools, allowing older travelers to visit here even when the weather wasn't as nice. Today, we mainly have city hotels that do not have spas or facilities to accommodate winter tourism. 

If flights were not the problem, does Split have a winter tourism offer, and if yes, what is it?

I feel bad for tourists that visit Split in the winter, especially now. The only real options are for visitors to have dinner then drinks in a half-empty bar. Guests ask us what they should do after dinner, and we honestly don't know what to tell them.

The museums here are great and interesting for Croatian schoolkids needing to learn about the history of Croatia, but for international tourists, and even if I was a tourist here, there are no interactive museums where you could spend the day. When it comes to culture, we are also lacking in offering shows. HNK is amazing, but the program is mainly in Croatian, which doesn't tempt tourists - especially when musicals or drama plays are in focus. 


If I am on a city-break getaway with my husband, I would also want to go shopping, which is a huge problem here. My guests often ask where they can buy certain designer items. The people that come here are minimum middle to upper-class guests. They pay big money for their hotel room - around 300-400 euros. Most people on city-break trips travel without their kids - usually with their significant other or friends. This then targets travelers who want to go to a nice show, dinner, enjoy good cocktails, and maybe explore a museum. But they will also want to go shopping, and there isn't a designer shopping offer in Split. This is a problem we need to start addressing now. The wealthy Russian tourist cannot buy their Chanel in Split but can elsewhere. They could go to Montenegro instead. 

Istria already has a winter tourism offer, but Inland Dalmatia is not yet as developed. If you're coming to Split for 3-4 days, wouldn't you want to spend one day in nature with a local family that will serve you their homemade wines and products? Especially somewhere that is only a taxi ride away from Split? There are few places you can send tourists for that experience, and we see a lot of interest around this idea from our guests at Chops. We already have beautiful villas with pools in Imotski, but a nice family farm or winery where you can spend the day? Our current offer mainly targets Croatian families for a Sunday lunch. It's not a Michelin-star experience, but it's an authentic and local experience, and tourists would love it, too.

Are you aware of any initiatives to improve the winter tourism situation?

Only Paul and Total Croatia News, haha. I've been part of the tourism industry for a long time, and I don't know of anything happening at the moment. Oh, but I do know that the Mall of Split bus is running from the ferry port! 

Give us a few quick wins that could make Split a bit more attractive in the winter months?

Shopping, winery day trips from Split, contemporary/interactive art and museums, and shows. This is what I believe is most important for Split to offer in the winter. There also are not many destinations that offer both the beach and city-break getaways. Maybe Nice and Cannes if we are talking about cities comparable to Split. But what do they have? Shopping, art, and beautiful restaurants - but why? Because they have yachts. They have a similar climate, but it is not swimmable in the winter there either. Yacht owners, however, keep their yachts there in the winter. They check up on them and maintain them in the offseason. They know that bars and restaurants are open and that they can shop. Montenegro is starting to do the same thing. We have a lot of regular guests at Chops that live abroad but keep their yachts here in the winter, but what can we offer them? We also have an advantage compared to similar cities because these guests can easily fly into Split Airport, check on their yacht, and spend 2-3 days in Split. We need this tourism. 


Are you planning an event(s) of your own soon?

On Saturday night we had a lot of reservations, due mainly to our Chopsylicious menu, which we have been doing for the last 7 years! Once we announced it this year, the interest was crazy. Everybody wants to try the menu, which is an excellent value for money. Diners can taste some of our products during the winter when they have more time. We have adjusted the menu to the season. For example, we are not selling the wagyu for 200 kuna. Instead, we changed the menu and are using it to test new dishes for next year. We are tracking what guests like and improving what is needed. When next season comes, we can introduce it to our menu. It's a win-win situation. And guests who like the Chopsylicious menu revisit us in the summer or recommend us to friends and family!  




Besides Chopsylicious, we host two music professors from the Josip Hatze school who play inside the restaurant every weekend. Paradiso will be bringing in some light live music from next weekend, and we will begin decorating for Christmas as part of our winter wonderland. We have done it already for two years, and it's beautiful. This year we are going the extra mile to create a Christmas village. We will once again offer our breakfast sandwiches at Chops and Paradiso, so people will always have a place to eat and drink. 


Will you close at all this year?

We always close from January 6 to March 1. It gives us a small break, but we also need to use the time to prepare for the season with renovations. We cannot preserve everything and need to repaint, repair the chairs, and the like. We also use this time to create the menu. 

Back in 2020, we had plans to keep Chops open year-round. But, of course, the pandemic happened instead. That remains our ultimate goal, and I don't think we would have much trouble doing business even in January and February.

When winter tourism is mentioned, many locals say that they do not want it, as they are tired after the busy season. What is your perspective as a successful business owner?

We want it! We do need a break; everyone needs a break. I know I do because I have never worked harder on the operational side of things than this summer. But I only need about 15 days. I get nervous after that, haha. I need to do something actively; I cannot just twiddle my thumbs at home and not work because we had a 'successful season'. The Chopsylicious menu and our winter offer keep us busy, and I am happy we have that.


I would be terrified to close my doors for the entire winter. You cannot keep quality by doing that. Businesses that close in the winter also make the hospitality industry less desirable. It makes us a servant to our tourists. If you can work for an entire year, especially at a restaurant with a lot of business in the summer, and have good business throughout the winter with a year-round salary, then being a waiter is a beautiful job where you can support your family. Who wants to be a waiter only for 4 months? Then it's just a student job. 

We care about our suppliers a lot and try to find a lower-cost product in the winter than the premium products we offer in the summer. With our chefs and their innovation, we create affordable dishes that guests can enjoy in the offseason. For example, the tuna salad on the Chopsylicious menu uses lower-cost ingredients but looks beautiful. The most expensive part of that dish is that someone had to come up with it in their head. If I am looking at that as the owner, the cost of that dish is lower, but someone needs to think about how to create that using the products available. That is why I invest in my staff throughout the year, and that is how you can adapt your offer in the winter to make sense for your restaurant and your guests. 

What are the key steps in your opinion to getting more flights in winter? (Optional)

The Marriott (which will open eventually), Le Meridien Lav, Radisson Blu, and Atrium offer over 1,000 hotel rooms combined. All of those hotels have a spa, which I've already mentioned is crucial for city-break destinations. That's about 2,000 potential guests per day, offered beautiful hotels, great service and food, and indoor pools. If they all got together and spoke to a low-cost carrier about offering and filling these 1,000 rooms, that's a solution. It could almost be some non-formal tour operator. Say, for example, you buy the flight from a low-cost carrier and are offered reasonable rates at these hotels. This is especially important on the weekends when there are no business people from Zagreb in Split. But I truly believe these hotels with indoor pools need to come together; that is the only way it will work. Think - 2,000 people per day is 14,000 potential tourists per week. Those guests will be able to visit the hotel spa and swim, have a nice dinner in town, go to a cocktail bar, and even go to Joker for shopping!


I would also try to create a promo video for tourists showing them exactly how their 4 days in Split would look, instead of just sharing Croatia's most beautiful destinations from above, usually without people. You could create a beautiful 'day-in-the-life' type of promo video showing exactly what you can expect on your Split trip. We need to show tourists what they can do here and not just share aerial footage. 

Message to other businesses in Split?

If you stay open in winter, the summer will be easier since you can keep your staff. You'll offer better service, too. If you have both of those things, you'll earn even more money. And if we are all open during the winter, buying from our suppliers won't be as complicated!

Some businesses see each other as competition. If you have a city with many good restaurants, people visit for gastronomy, meaning they'll choose a new restaurant every day. Having more quality restaurants means more business for everyone. This would also help us to be recognized as an excellent gastronomic destination. We all need to support each other. Why can't other restaurants recreate the Chopsylicious idea? That is a wonderful idea, and it gives us more places to visit for dinner!

We also need to think about the minds of tourists and understand that they may not want to eat Dalmatian food every day of their trip. While local food should be enjoyed, it is impossible to expect that someone will eat grilled fish and blitva all the time. I know that when I am visiting Mexico, I cannot eat Mexican food every day. Sometimes you need a burger or pizza; comfort food that hits the spot and gives you a taste of home. And that is fine, too.

We offer eggs benedict on our breakfast menu and make the English muffins in-house because you cannot find them in Croatia. While we have to put in more work, knowing that our guests have that piece of familiarity is worth it.  We also can't expect that every tourist likes eating fish or can peel scampi! A lot of these experiences may be new to them. That's why we should think about what tourists have available at home and try to recreate it in our way with traditional influences. 


This is the direction we need to be going in. We should never lose our identity, but let's celebrate international cuisine with a Dalmatian twist. 

You can explore Chops HERE.

If you are a business in Split with a winter program, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the subject Split Winter Tourism. 

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Start Your Split Morning Right with Chops Breakfast, Fresh Juices, and Fit Options

November 4, 2021 - Because Chops breakfast serves every kind of Split morning, rain or shine. 

Breakfast - sworn by parents as the most important meal of the day, never missed by athletes, and indeed a meal no tourist traveling Croatia can afford to miss before their sightseeing adventures. 

And while you're exploring Split, you'll notice that some restaurants do breakfast better than the rest. Chops Grill is one of them. 

Making waves last year with their affordable yet quick grab-n-go brekky options, like the irresistible croissant sandwich with prosciutto or salmon and tangy spring onion and honey mustard touch, dining at Chops for your morning meal comes with a generous selection of feel-good food you won't soon forget. 

A staple on the Chops breakfast menu is the hard-hitting eggburger, which first made its debut last year on the new Chops to-go menu with the favorite croissant sandwich. A perfectly chewy bun warmed by fluffy scrambled eggs, cheese, sriracha mayo, and spring onion make for a delightful yet just filling enough morning munch. 


But Chops' breakfast goes beyond these beloved sandwiches. Classics like eggs benedict on in-house English muffins, the ham, cheese, and pancetta omelet, or the over-the-top Chops breakfast with scrambled eggs on focaccia with pancetta, grilled sausage, and asparagus will teleport your morning from Split to the USA. You can even sit down for American pancakes to seal the deal! 


But that's not all. 


Those of you looking to keep things light can opt for the chia pudding, fit breakfast with Greek yogurt, avocado toast, or veggie omelet, or quench your thirst thanks to a variety of freshly squeezed juices, from apple, mint, and ginger, to Super Green, Veggie Focus, or the Heartbeat abounding in avocado, banana, apple, and red beet! 


And juices aren't the only way to whet your morning palate, with standout items like the avocado or almond butter berry shake on offer, too. 


Topped off with award-winning coffee, there is something for everyone at Chops Grill - and you'll likely return for dinner to try their star-studded selection of steaks! 

You can see the full Chops breakfast menu HERE

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Thursday, 18 March 2021

The Wait is Over: Chops Grill in Split Reopens Terrace for All Steak Lovers!

March 18, 2021 - Chops Grill in Split has reopened its spacious terrace for all steak lovers in the city!

"The spacious and airy, unique and pleasant ambiance of #ChopsGrill restaurant is perfect for birthday celebrations, baptisms, first communions, and Confirmations, as well as business gatherings with colleagues and partners. Share unforgettable moments with your loved ones and enjoy the top gastronomic delicacies of our chefs."

It's the moment we've all been waiting for... Chops Grill has reopened their roomy terrace for all meat lovers in Split! 

From Thursday, March 18, at noon, the doors to Split's famous steakhouse will welcome you with open arms, the highest safety standards, and the juiciest cuts of meat. 

Whether you'd prefer a veal ribeye, Black Angus ribeye and beef tenderloin, T-Bone, striploin, or tomahawk on the bone, Chops' vast selection of meats has a cut for everyone. 

But it isn't only about the beef. 

Guests can begin with scampi & shrimp pate, bruschetta topped with mozzarella, tomatoes, pesto, or a chilled and tart tuna carpaccio with shallots, rocket, pomegranate, and citrus. 

A light apricot risotto served with a pea cream or linguine prepared 'buzara' style with shrimp, shells, and the freshest fish available will make you forget you're even at a steakhouse. The mango-dressed salmon filet with chickpeas, sea bass filet in a red paprika sauce, or grilled local bluefin tuna can do no wrong, while the beautifully grilled monkfish soaked in a truffle sauce is a delightful, delicious, and dangerously good option you won't be sorry you chose. 

Classic soups and salads are readily available to lighten the load, and a dessert selection from sorbet made in-house to traditional egg flan, mirror-glazed cheesecake, or chocolate souffle are just a few of the ways you can end a stellar meal. 

You can explore the full Chops Grill menu HERE.

For all info and reservations, call +395 91 365 0000.

Chops will work every day from 12 pm to 10 pm.

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Saturday, 22 June 2019

From Lobster to Langoustines: Try the Seafood to be Savored at Chops Grill

June 22, 2019 -  Have you savored in the seafood side of Chops Grill yet?

It’s officially summer, and now that we are one day into the new season, we thought we’d welcome this new spell with something that Split does best - seafood. 

We know that summer is as good an excuse as any to increase your seafood intake, that is, especially if you’re frolicking around Dalmatia. But some places do seafood better than most, and we’d like to consider Chops Grill one of the best. 


Sure, they’re known for their steaks, and boy, do we love them, but for those of you looking for something a bit lighter, easier on the figure, or as the perfect complement to a summer day, we’re going to suggest you dig into the seafood side of the menu at Chops Grill.

Here’s why. 

Reason number 1: Chops Grill offers lobster, yes, lobster on their menu! Namely, you can get a whole live Mediterranean lobster cut in half and grilled; served with creamy rice, citrus dressing and a Caesar dressing infused with anchovies. 


Reason number 2: They stick to the classics, like langoustines (or as we like to call them, ‘scampi) prepared in Dalmatia’s savory red ‘’buzara’’ sauce with tomatoes, white wine, and garlic. And you get to enjoy this dish with spaghetti.


Reason number 3: Their selection of fish general, which you can try individually, or thanks to the ‘Chops Duet for 2’, which consists of a medley from their seafood menu. If you’re up for digging into grilled scampi, whole sea bass, tuna steak, salmon, swordfish and monkfish, served with Dalmatian potatoes and grilled vegetables, you’re in for a treat. 


It would only make sense to begin your seafood feast with an appetizer from the sea, like shrimp pâté, vegetable and shrimp soup, or Mediterranean risotto - and if you're feeling dangerous, have you seen their dessert menu?

It's safe to say that this steakhouse packs in the seafood, and you won't have trouble pleasing anyone in your dinner party by dining at Chops Grill. 

You can find the full menu at Chops Grill here, and follow them on Facebook here

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

Sunday, 11 March 2018

We Meat Again: Chops Grill Returns with New March Menu!

Carnivores, pescetarians, and vegetarians, rejoice! Chops Grill is back with a menu that suits you all, and everyone in between. 

Thursday, 11 January 2018

Because You Don't Want to Wait Until March...Get Your Steak Fix at Chops Grill Now!

Let the buttons loose on your trousers again; you have just about another week to enjoy the finest steakhouse in Split…that is, until March.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Chops Grill Introduces the Best Beef in the World

Get your taste buds ready! Chops Grill introduces the best beef in the world.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

The Day We Have All Been Waiting for...Chops Grill is Open Again!

Chops Grill has opened again just in time for spring. 

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Chops Grill: The Perfect Place to Taste the Holidays

With the arrival of winter and the celebration of Advent in Split, Chops Grill Steak & Seafood has crafted their own special way to celebrate: a holiday menu.

Page 1 of 2