How to Feed a Michelin Star Restaurant Owner Visiting Zagreb?

By 1 December 2021

December 1, 2021 - Where to take the owner of a Michelin Star restaurant in Zagreb who knows the culinary scene well in the Croatian capital? Restoran Matrix, perhaps.  

One of my favourite people in the world is visiting Zagreb. A hugely successful businessman, whose many accomplishments includes having his own restaurant with a Michelin Star, our occasional lunches are always fun, with interesting food, fantastic wine, and outstanding stories. 

He called the other day to say he was in town with his wife and invited my wife and I for lunch. 

It was more than my turn to organise lunch. The problem was, he knows the gourmet scene in Zagreb much better than me. What could I possibly do to impress him and his lovely wife?

There was only one option I could come up with - the recently opened Restoran Matrix, located in Matrix Office Park. He would certainly not have tried it yet, and possibly not have evn heard of it. 

I extended the invite, and he gratefully accepted, confirming that he had never heard of the place and was always keen to try something new. 

Next, I contacted Manuela Maras, who runs Matrix. 

The instructions were simple. Table for 4 at 13:00. A special foodie friend coming for lunch. A special 5-course meal with wine pairing - dishes to be decided by the chef. 

This is what happened next.  


The most famous egg in the world, the famous Alain passard egg. 


Butter flavored with caramelized onions and Kajmak from Užice (Serbia) 


Mackerel, 2 types of beets, shizo leaf 


Tataki Tuna, Kimchi And horseradish ice cream 


Ramsteak tartare And homemade brioche bread 


Celery puree, Jacobs cap, trout roe, black autumn truffle


Pigeon, fig cooked in syrup, rhubarb cream 


Black Slavonian pig in 3 segments, potato sauce, sarma 


Basil and olive oil ice cream on a bed of deehydrated butter flakes


Pumpkin in 4 segments .. Crumble, biscuit, ice cream and Pumpkin cooked in syrup 


Our afternoon was accompanied every stretch of the way by Alessandra Vekić, Mate oil, one of the 2 best Croatian oil in the world .. Flos Olei 99 points for last year's harvest .. 


Each dish was personally paired by Matrix sommelier Manuela Maras. It is beyond the scope of this fat blogger to recall and write about them all, but this wine, paired with the pigeon, will give some indication. Brkic is one of the top producers in Herzegovina, and there are only 242 bottles of this label produced, with only one place in Croatia that serves it - Matrix. And rather a fine drop it was. 

It had been quite a culinary journey, and my visiting friends deemed the lunch a great success. So much so in fact that they went in to congratulate young chef, Marko Jantolek, and to make arrangments for both chefs to meet and swap experiences. 

I went over to settle the bill with a little bit of foreboding. How much would such hedonisticfun for four actually cost? And that was the final surprise of an excellent afternoon. A little more expensive than my usual mixed grill for sure, but far less than I was expecting. 

Learn more about Restoran Matrix on the official website

I was fortunate enough to be invited to the official opening of Restaurant Matrix a few weeks ago (see the video below) - Restoran Matrix, an Innovative Addition to the Zagreb Dining Scene