Wednesday, 13 July 2022

Breakfast in Split 2022: Your Guide to Morning Bites

July 13, 2022 - Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but that hasn't always been the case in Split. That is, until recently. A look at breakfast in Split 2022. 

As someone that grew up in southern California on breakfast burritos, loaded scrambles, crispy hashbrowns, eggs benny, and a neverending display of pancakes from the local diner, breakfast has always been my favorite meal. But on my visits to Croatia over the past 20 years before moving here 7 years ago, breakfast was hardly a meal to remember. 

In 1996, I remember mornings eating oversized pieces of crusty bread with butter and marmalade. In the early 2000s, we'd search for the saltiest burek to cure the hangover on Hvar or force the restaurant to serve french fries with the only ham & cheese omelet on the menu, if only to attempt at mimicking the breakfasts we were used to. But the selection, overall, was nothing to write home about. 

The story today, however, is much different, and Split especially has blossomed as a breakfast and brunch spot in the last few years. As a result, this summer's better than ever. 

Brasserie on 7

One of the city's first 'true' brunch spots is Riva favorite Brasserie on 7, bringing a taste of Australia to the Croatian coast with brioche French toast, eggs benedict, and homemade English muffins, among some of their morning options. You can find the full breakfast menu here


Split's best steakhouse isn't only home to the finest cuts of Croatian beef, but you can find breakfast here from 8 am to 11 am, with avocado toast, croissant sandwiches, toasties, and American-style pancakes on the menu. You can also snag their yummy breakfast sandwiches next door at Paradiso!



A wine bar that is so much more than the wine, Zindanfel ensures it is open in the morning for you to enjoy Florentine-style eggs, Turkish eggs, or the gourmet breakfast baguette for those looking to fill up for the day. You can find the full menu here


After its success in Hvar town, Fig opened in the heart of Diocletian's Palace back in 2019 to the delight of everyone eager to dig into their famous vegetarian breakfast burrito, California toast, or spicy steam-poached eggs. You can find the full menu here

The Daltonist

From craft cocktail bar to your go-to pub for grub, The Daltonist has an impressive morning menu that ranges from truffle benedict to shakshuka, and the uber popular 'Full Daltonista,' or their take on an English Breakfast with pork sausage, ham, fried egg, roasted tomatoes, mushrooms, greens, black beans, and homemade bread! You can see the full menu here


Ciri Biri Bela 

This cafe and restaurant is located in a romantic courtyard just behind the theater, serving a selection of farmer's fresh omelets, benedicts ranging from classic to royal, homemade waffles, rustic sourdough toast topped with avocado cream and wild salmon - and more!  You can find the menu here

Pandora Greenbox

The plant-based Pandora is one of the healthier options on the list, offering iced coffees with plant-based milk, vegan protein smoothies, and smoothie bowls with raw cacao, banana, and crunchy peanut butter! You can find them on Facebook


*Another plant-based restaurant new to Split is Barakokula - and they serve brekky, too! 

Kat's Kitchen

Priding themselves on using only seasonal and organic ingredients, some even sourced from their garden, Kat's offers free-range eggs, homemade granola, sweet and savory croissants, vegan pancakes, and coconut milk-cooked oatmeal as just some of what you can find. You can explore the menu here

Brooklyn Bagel Co. 

And if you're on the go and looking for something quick, filling, and tasty? Brooklyn Bagel boasts a variety of homemade bagels and shmears and a selection of hearty bagel sandwiches! You can learn more here


It's nearly impossible to name all restaurants serving breakfast in Split now, and that's not a bad problem to have. No matter where you are in the old town, you'll see a sign for breakfast. If you're in or near Pjaca, don't miss the always popular Bepa, No Stress, or Bokeria, and if you find yourself on the outskirts of the center - Ka Doma is a local gem. And if you want to add a touch of spice to your morning? Sanctuary Cantina will soon be serving up breakfast burritos, hashbrowns, and scrambles every day! 

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Saturday, 25 June 2022

Split International Food Scene: What's New in 2022?

June 25, 2022 - A look at the booming Split international food scene and what has opened this year. 

International flavors have increasingly shown their face in Split over the last few years, but it's hard to say if they've been as prevalent as in 2022. After the tastes of Mexico, China, and Japan became more common to find, this year, Split is alive with new international flair to the delight of tourists, expats, and locals alike. 

Here's a look at what's new in 2022. 

Siam Thai Food

Split finally has a Thai food restaurant! After Siam Thai opened in Kaštela over a year ago, the citizens of Split eagerly awaited its more central location - and this summer, we finally have it. Siam Thai opened in Pohodnik, or the tunnel underneath Split's Green Market (Pazar), offering takeout, delivery, and a handful of tables for those who want to dine in. With authentic pad Thai, curries, and spring rolls, Siam offers the best selection of Thai food favorites with hefty portions at reasonable prices. 

Rooh Indian 

And we finally have Indian food, too! One international cuisine expats especially have been waiting for is finally here. Rooh opened in the heart of Split a few months ago with everything one would expect from a traditional Indian restaurant. With a selection of naan bread, tandoori dishes, the popular honey chili cauliflower, samosas, and biriyani - Rooh has it all. And they know a thing or two about heat! Rooh has both indoor and outdoor seating and is located just off of Marmontova. 


African is a rather unexpected cuisine you'd find in Split, that is, until now. But in an effort to make sure it appeals to more familiar tastes, Zuva mixes the flavors of the Mediterranean with Africa, offering sourdough toasties and shakshuka among their breakfast items to oysters, Cape Malay curry, crispy African 'sadza', chicken, steak, and pasta mains, and sticky malva pudding for dessert. Zuva has a large outdoor terrace just opposite the Cornaro hotel. 

Sanctuary Cantina

Everyone's favorite craft cocktail bar is transforming into a Mexican cantina this summer! Known for whipping up espresso martinis and old-fashioned's, Sanctuary Cantina is a new Mexican restaurant in town, with an extensive selection of tequilas, margaritas, mezcal, and authentic Mexican dishes, like beef barbacoa, ancho chicken, and pork carnitas as the stars of their burritos, tacos, quesadillas, and more! 

Casa de Fuego 

And if you're looking for something a bit more low-key? Casa de Fuego is a new Mexican fast food restaurant in town, where ground beef burritos, hard shell tacos, and churros are king. Casa de Fuego has limited seating inside and is great if you're on the go. 

Pinsa Romana

Considering Romans did rule Split once upon a time, it's no surprise that a Roman-inspired sandwich shop has opened in Split. Pinsa Romana brings Roman street food sandwiches and 100% Italian specialties to the center of town, right across from the famous fish market. Enjoy mortadella sandwiches with pistachio pesto, stracciatella, and the only original parmigiana in town!


Did someone say empanadas? An Argentinian deli has opened in Split in the tunnel next to HNK, offering handmade empanadas, yerba mate, dulce de leche, Argentinian wine, and more. 

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 21 June 2022

A Foolproof Riva Brunch, Lunch, and Dinner Spot: Cool Off this Summer at Brasserie on 7

June 21, 2022 - It's the first day of summer, which can only mean one thing - we need to find the best places to cool off in Split. And one foolproof lunch spot that never disappoints? Riva favorite Brasserie on 7. 

The summer solstice has hit Split as we celebrate the official start of a new season, though with the busy crowds in the city center since Easter weekend and temperatures hitting 30 degrees Celsius for what feels like months, summer never felt too far away this time around. 

As we welcome back travelers from all parts of the world with tourism in full swing, we are reminded of the record 2019 season before the pandemic rattled our adventures. Our only issue now is finding a sanctuary in Split to kick back, cool off, and indulge - but Brasserie on 7 is perfect for just that. 

While it may be situated on Split's most famous street, this Riva favorite continues to impress year after year, with standout menus crafted by French American Executive Chef Alexandre Ange. And this summer is no different. 

We already know all about the meal that made Brasserie on 7 famous - brunch. But with eggs benedict, brioche french toast, and shakshuka on the menu, we're not surprised. Brasserie also ensures options for guests looking to stay healthy on holiday, with acai bowls, yogurt and homemade granola, and 100% fresh fruit juices to keep you glowing and going in the summer sun. 


The lunch and dinner menu honors local produce and modern takes on Dalmatian classics to add a touch of flair to your fare. The decadent prawn tartare is dressed with wasabi mayo, red pepper coulis & toasted nori, while the tangy and refreshing endive & citrus salad cools your palate with grapefruit, orange, red onion, and radish. 


Mirela Rus

The Seafood Risotto standouts with a scampi bisque, prawns, clams, squid & parmesan, and the Smoked Fish “Carbonara” uses Adriatic fish, cream & parmesan to up an all-time classic. Those wanting to stick to the more authentic side of Dalmatian cuisine can enjoy the clams 'buzara', market fish, or grilled octopus.


And for the meat-eaters in the group? The 45-Day Dry-Aged Rib-Eye is adorned with roasted cauliflower, capers, almonds & black truffle bearnaise, and the Duck Confit is plated with gingered potato, roasted peppers, arugula & honey-mustard vinaigrette. 


Chef Alexandre Ange also designs a weekly menu in addition to the la carte lunch and dinner dining, which evolves depending on what’s in season and available. Don't forget to check in with the waitstaff to find out what’s on this week! 

And we haven't even gotten to the desserts...


You can explore everything Brasserie on 7 offers on their official website.

For more, check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Friday, 29 April 2022

Split in 24 Hours: Attractions, Nature, Food, and Nightlife

April 30, 2022 – A look at the attractions, nature, food, and nightlife you must experience in Split in 24 hours.

Split is the second-largest city in Croatia and the largest city in the Dalmatia region and the Croatian Adriatic coast. Split has for many years been a transition hub, and fairly neglected by tourists. Nevertheless, in the last decade or so, Split has acquired quite a reputation and is becoming one of the most popular cities in Croatia. Split is most famous for Diocletian's Palace which was built by a Roman Emperor Diocletian in 305 AD and is located in the heart of the city. Split is also very famous for its rich culture, music festivals, football club Hajduk, beautiful beaches, Marjan hill, and many other attractions. If your goal is to experience the beautiful Adriatic coast while also enjoying the vivid urban life and exploring rich history in combination with local cuisine and the Dalmatian way of life, Split is your place to go.

9.00 a.m. – 10.00 a.m.

The start of the day in Split, the capital of Dalmatia, always has to begin with a coffee. I suggest visiting some of the numerous cafes in the Split city center or along the Riva. Also, it is good to grab something to eat while you are on the way. If you are a bakery person, head to Bobis, Prerada, Krušćić, and Tradicija (locals call it Kirigin) with the latter specializing in sweet pastries. Another good tip would be to visit the local green market which is also located in the city center, next to Diocletian's Palace. There you can find various stands with fresh fruits, vegetables, and other organic and homemade products. If you are keener on eating breakfast in a restaurant, Brasserie on 7 or Zinfandel should be on your list. 


Split Riva ; source: Pixabay

10.00 a.m. – 13.00 a.m.

After eating a proper breakfast and drinking your morning coffee, I would recommend wandering around the city center and especially Diocletian's Palace. There you have many city attractions such as the Saint Duje bell tower, Split city museum, Diocletian's cellars, Split Ethnographic museum, Temple of Jupiter, and of course the main city square Peristil and neighboring Vestibul.


Vestibul ; source: Pixabay

Since it is not possible to visit all of the aforementioned city attractions, I will leave the choice up to you. Nevertheless, I would strongly recommend climbing up the St. Duje bell tower or at least the Vestibul (you can access it through the ethnographic museum) just to get a sense of the city and the surrounding islands.


Saint Duje bell tower; source: Pixabay

10.00 a.m. – 13.00 p.m.

It is already lunchtime so it is time to try some of the well-praised local cuisine. There are numerous Dalmatian dishes that you should try, such as Dalmatian prosciutto and cheese, Pašticada, Gregada, Škampi na Buzaru, Peka (veal, octopus, or lamb), Fritule, Rožata, Soparnik, Viška pogača, Crni rižot (Squid Ink risotto) and many many more. Some of the well-praised local restaurants are the following: Konoba Varoš, Konoba Hvaranin, Šug, Zrno Soli, Adriatic, Uje, and Chops Grill, among many others. If you are traveling on a budget or you would just like to experience the street food of split, then check out this list.


Pjaca; source: Pixabay

4.00 p.m. – 6.00 p.m.

After eating, it is a perfect time for an after-lunch stroll up the Marjan hill. You can access it through the Marjan stairs that lead you to Vidilica and from there to the St. Nicholas church. From there you can either continue further or if you are in the right mood you can climb up to the peak (takes around 30 minutes).


View from the Marjan Hill; source: Pixabay


hermitage of St. Cirijaka on Marjan; source: Pixabay

Besides the already mentioned Split city museum and the ethnographic museum which are in the city center, there are three other museums I would strongly suggest visiting. The first one is located close to the Marjan hill and it is the Museum of archaeological monuments. The second one is the Split archaeological museum located near the magnificent Poljud city stadium (home ground of Hajduk Split). Lastly, the third one is the Croatian Maritime Museum, located in the Baroque fortress of Gripe which is also a great place to visit (a 10-minute walk from the city center).

If you are visiting Split in the summertime, you should check out the beaches around the Marjan hill since these are the least crowdy and nature there is simply stunning. If you are into sports, you should head down to Bačvice or Firule beach where you will find locals playing a local game of picigin.

6.00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

It is time to head back to the city center, on your way you can visit Sustipan and Zvončac which are two small parks. From there you can walk along the Zapadna Obala (West Coast) towards the center. It is again time to experience local dishes preferably seafood accompanied by world praised Dalmatian wines. Split thrives in the evening and you can feel its energy on every corner, especially in the summer.


View from the Sustipan peninsula; source: Pixabay

There is always something happening in the city, bars such as Basket, Adriatic Social Club, Ghetto, Flag Pub, and Charlie's are known for live performances and good music. On the other hand, there is Hrvatski Dom which offers a wide variety of classical music events. Split has a deep connection with music, and if you don't know who Dino Dvornik or Oliver Dragojević are then please find out as quickly as possible. Needless to say that it is not a coincidence that Split is home to many music festivals such as Ultra Europe, Split Summer Festival, Split Festival, Split Blues Festival, Fibra Festival, Ego Free Festival, and Xstatic. There are also two important film festivals taking place in Split, Mediterranean Film Festival (June) and Split Film Festival (September).

9.00 p.m. – onwards

If you are still looking for action, then I suggest either staying in the city center where you can visit numerous bars and pubs and even end up in a club such as  Kuka, Central or 305 AD. If you want to extend the nightlife even further and you don't mind getting out of the center then you have two unique possibilities either going to the "Barbarinac Island of love" known in the slang as Barbados or hopping off to some boat party. These two venues happen only through summer and usually over the weekend. 

That would be all for Split in 24 hours, to be honest, you should multiply these hours by at least 5 since this is undoubtedly one of the pearls on the Adriatic coast as well as in the Mediterranean.

If you want to find out more about Split, check out our dedicated section Split in a page 2022.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 22 April 2022

Two-Year Wait is Over: Breakfast is BACK at Zinfandel Food & Wine Bar!

April 22, 2022 - It's been a long two years without the morning grub at one of our favorite wine and dine spots in Split. But we are happy to announce that the wait is now over - and breakfast is back at Zinfandel Food & Wine Bar! 

It's no surprise that the sister restaurant of one of Split's best Riva breakfast spots has been known to serve up a mean morning meal, but when we say that Zinfandel breakfast is back and better than ever after two-year hiatus, you know we are talking about the real deal. 

Not only is Zinfandel serving the famous brekky dishes from Brasserie on 7, like the hollandaise-heavy eggs benedict and carmelized banana french toast topped with cinnamon cream cheese, but they're rolling out several new breakfast dishes that'll ensure your day starts on the right foot. 

Break the day with a selection of new dishes, including the spicy 'Turkish eggs' or poached eggs with garlic-infused yogurt sauce, chili & pepper, and butter sauce. 


If you're looking for the ultimate hangover cure or something to hold you over until dinner, dig into the hearty gourmet breakfast baguette, stuffed with two fried eggs, ham, rocket, and aioli. 

Since no breakfast menu is complete without eggs Florentine, Zinfandel crafts theirs with hollandaise, baby spinach, mushrooms, and homemade English muffins.


Those wanting to keep things a light should choose the Greek yogurt and chia parfait, with housemade toasted granola, lime, and honey, or the Superfood smoothie bowl with spirulina, baby spinach, toasted granola, and fresh fruits.


A fresh fruit platter is also on offer for breakfast. 


There is no reason to let your tummies grumble until lunchtime. Whether you're looking for something light, classic, or keep you full throughout the day, Zinfandel has something for everyone. 


Breakfast is served at Zinfandel Food & Wine Bar every day from 8 am to 11:30 am. You can explore all menus here.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Thursday, 24 March 2022

24th Restaurant Week Returns from March 25, Eight Split Restaurants on Offer

March 24, 2022 - The 24th Restaurant Week in Croatia returns on Friday, March 25, where participating restaurants around the country offer 3-course menus for promotional prices! 

Restaurant Week returns to Croatia for its 24th edition on March 25. The special event is a chance for foodies around the country to enjoy three-course menus at various participating restaurants for 100/125 kuna, during both lunch and dinner. The 24th edition of this event will be held from March 25 to April 3, 2022. 

So, what is Restaurant Week anyway?

Restaurant Week is the idea of Željka Marjanović and Ozren Drobnjak, who wanted to find a way to promote Croatia’s culinary scene in cooperation with its catering establishments. Restaurants participating in the campaign meet the needs of guests through a special promotional offer. The concept is modeled on capital cities around the world and is adapted to the Croatian market. During the event, participating restaurants offer various three-course menus at promotional prices. It is held twice a year, usually in late February and late September, though the 23rd edition was held last October and this one in March.

The Croatian capital has 20 participating restaurants this time, while Croatia's second-largest city Split welcomes eight restaurants this year. 

Thus, diners in Split can enjoy 3-course menus from Brasserie on 7, Da'Mar at Hotel Marvie, Dujkin Dvor, Olive Tree, Kaštil Slanica, Sidi Bar,  Restaurant Split 1921 at Hotel Park, and Zinfandel Food & Wine Bar. 

Some menus on offer: 

Brasserie on 7



1. Sweet potato and ginger soup - Sour cream with vanilla, pepper & walnuts

2. Endive and Citrus Salad - Endive, Grapefruit, Orange, Red Onion, Radish & Citrus Dressing

3. Cheeses & charcuterie - Selection of local OPG cured meat products and cheeses served with fig jam

Main course

1. "Carbonara" of smoked mackerel - Smoked mackerel, cream & parmesan

2. Bbq beef sandwich + french fries - Chili aioli & ginger slaw served with french fries

3. Chicken sandwich + french fries - Basil aioli, roasted peppers, cottage cheese & rocket


Selection from the cake display case



1. Shrimp tartar - Marinated shrimp, wasabi mayo, red pepper coulis & toasted nori

2. Cheeses & charcuterie - Selection of local OPG cured meat products and cheeses served with fig jam

3. Shrimp and mussels risotto - “Bisque” from shrimp, prawns, mussels, squid & parmesan 

Main course

1. Buzara - Mixed mussels, basil, kulen & confit tomatoes

2. Adriatic fish - Young onions, potatoes, peas with an emulsion of shellfish and saffron

3. Duck confit - Potatoes, roasted peppers, arugula & honey, and mustard vinaigrette


Selection from the cake display case

You can find all of the menus on the official website

For more, check out our lifestyle section

Friday, 4 March 2022

Chops Grill in Split Reopening on March 5, TCN is Giving Away Dinner for Two!

March 4, 2022 - Chops Grill in Split reopens on March 5 after a short winter hibernation - and we are giving away dinner for two! 

It's the moment we've all been waiting for... the doors to Split's famous steakhouse will welcome you with open arms and the juiciest cuts of meat on Saturday, March 5! 

Chops will reopen tomorrow with their special Chopsylitious 3-course menu, loved by locals and foreigners alike, and will also offer a smaller selection of their celebrated a la carte meat options, including USDA steaks and the original Japanese wagyu beef. 


Better yet, TCN is giving away a Chopsylitious dinner for TWO with a glass of wine, valid for the next month while the promotional Chopsylitious menu is on offer! All you need to do is follow our TCN Instagram and Total Split Facebook page and tag the person you want to have dinner with when we share this article. TCN will contact the winner on Saturday, March 5, by noon! 

But it isn't only about the beef. 

Guests can begin with scampi & shrimp pate, burrata with smoked prosciutto and peaches, ceviche, grilled scallops, and wagyu beef carpaccio, to name a few. 

Pistachio pesto linguine, mushroom and truffle tagliatelle, langoustine and apricot risotto, and a fish selection from salmon to sea bass and local bluefin tuna are just some of the menu items beyond the beef. However, we'd highly recommend the Frenched rack of lamb and Beef Wellington if you're feeling fancy! 

Classic soups and salads are readily available to lighten the load, and a dessert selection from homemade sorbet to chocolate lava cake, upside-down cake, raw cake, and Schwarzwald are just a few of the ways you can end a stellar meal. 

Chops will also be honoring Women's Day on Tuesday, March 8, offering a glass of bubbly to all the ladies on their special day!

You can explore the full Chops Grill menu HERE.

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

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

Friday, 11 February 2022

2022 Valentine's Day in Split: Romantic Menus and More

February 11, 2022 - Have you planned your 2022 Valentine's Day in Split yet? This should help. 

Valentine's Day is around the corner, and whether you're the type of partner that plans ahead or fails to realize your significant other's favorite holiday is only three days away - we have you covered. 

Split restaurants are just beginning to reveal romantic menus and Valentine-themed events for this weekend with a selection of special offers fit for all lovers. 

Zinfandel Food & Wine Bar 

Zinfandel Food & Wine Bar has announced a special fish, meat, and vegetarian menu on Valentine's Day. Enjoy live music and 3-course menus for 230 kuna per person.


Reservations: 099 874 0132

Brasserie on 7

Brasserie on 7 reopens February 12, just in time for a fab Valentine's Day brunch! Check out the menu below at 200 kuna for two people. 


Mazzgoon is preparing a secret dinner on Saturday, February 12, and Monday, February 14, with an aphrodisiac menu and DJ! 



Want to hear live music? Head to Baraka on Monday for an Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry tribute band!  273816663_726493108789475_4749171008262542823_n.jpeg

Kavana Central 

Kavana Central at Heritage Hotel Santa Lucia is offering two 4-course menus (fish and meat) for 290 kuna.


 Reservations: 091-317-8350

Allora Restaurant

"Spend Love Day with your loved one at Allora Restaurant with romantic music and dinner courses.

We have prepared two menus for you:
- Greetings from the kitchen
- Shrimp tartare
- Crispy octopus
- White fish fillets
- Dessert
- Greetings from the kitchen
- Ramsteak carpaccio
- Arancini strogano
- French Rack
- Dessert

If you want to escape from the hectic everyday life and spend a weekend at Ora Hotel Split with someone you love or just come for dinner, there are various possibilities. 

For all information and reservations, contact us by phone 021 / 778-708 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.."


Perivoj announced their Valentine's Day couples: pork & steak and mullet & hake!

"We dimmed the lights, lit up the garden, played light music, and found the perfect pair in the selected wines for each course.

It's up to you to find your partner and choose your menu! We will start the celebration on Friday, February 11, and end on Monday, Valentine's Day!" said Perivoj. 

For all reservations, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

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. 

Wednesday, 6 October 2021

Split Restaurant Nights: Explore 3-Course Menus at Promotional Prices

October 6, 2021 - As part of the Taste of the Mediterranean Festival, Split Restuarant Nights will be held for the first time this weekend!

As part of the Taste of the Mediterranean Festival, Split Restuarant Nights will be held for the first time on Friday, October 8, and Saturday, October 9, in which 15 restaurants will offer unique 3-course Mediterranean menus and wines at promotional prices.

Participating restaurants include Atlantida, Bajamonti, Brasserie on 7, Bokeria, Corto Maltese, Dujkin dvor, Fantažija, Konoba Fetivi, Konoba Marul, Mazgoon, Laganini, Pandora Greenbox, Portofino, Sidi bar, and Šug.

Split restaurants have already started sharing the 3-course menus they'll be offering to guests this weekend in anticipation of the new event. 


Konoba Marul, for example, will offer a 3-course menu featuring:

1. Orzotta with shrimp and smoked mussels
2. Octopus tentacles with creamy puree and šalsa
3. Split cake for dessert

Two glasses of wine of your choice (Posip and Plavac mali) are also included, for a total price of 210 kuna.

Dujkin Dvor, on the other hand, is offering:

1. Risotto with Adriatic shrimps, sun-dried tomatoes, and cheese ice cream
2. Tuna pasticada 'a la Dujka'
3. Split cake

This menu includes Posip Smokvica (Korcula) or Plavac Lucic (Peljesac) wines for a total price of 195 kuna. 

Finally, the Šug menu features:

1. Šug plate - pate of shrimp, tuna, shrimps with pistachio, and smoked swordfish

2. Tećada - with white fish, shells, scampi, octopus, and macaroni

3. Split cake

This offer includes Cosseto Malvazija Prima Luce (0,125l) for a total of 210 kuna.

This is just part of the 9th Taste the Mediterranean Festival, which brings together international and Croatian chefs from Michelin restaurants and Gault & Millau accolades.

In addition to this weekend's event, the Split restaurants Dvor, Kadena, Kinoteka, Hotel Park, Zora Bila, and Zrno Soli will host chefs from seven countries who will organize six-course gala dinners together with Croatian chefs, and Noštromo will turn the entire Split Fish Market into a restaurant for one dinner. The festival also includes many workshops and panels at Briig Boutique Hotel in Bačvice, which you can read about here

For the second year in a row, the festival partner country is Spain, which will present its delicacies, wines, and olive oils in Split. Chef Maria Jimenez Latorre and chef Goran Šikić will offer Spanish gastronomic products at a gala dinner at the Briig Hotel, while Dr. Mirella Žanetić will lead a Spanish olive oil tasting.

Part of the festival will be held in the vicinity of Split, as participants will visit Omis, the Cetina River Canyon, Radman's mills, and Arsan Tasting House in Omiš. 

For more on lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

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