Levitate, a burgeoning star in Prague's fine dining scene

Levitate is one of Prague's newest fine dining establishments. Located at Štepanska 14, just 300 meters from Wenceslas Square, Levitate gets its share of the high-end tourist trade from Prague's five star hotels but the local culinary connoisseurs are starting to take notice. In spite of being rather new on the scene, Levitate has already created a bit of a buzz here through local and social media.

Levitate Restaurant fine dining in Prague
After a full year of preparation and planning, Levitate opened its doors on October 6th, 2017 with the unique concept of an Asian / Nordic restaurant. The Asian part is mostly in the food. Levitate uses spices, sauces, seasonings and herbs from Korea, China, Thailand, Japan and Viet Nam to create a melange of Asian flavours. The Nordic part manifests itself largely in decor and presentation but also key to Levitate's overall philosophy is the Nordic tradition of using locally sourced ingredients. Levitate uses only locally sourced ingredients and try to adhere to a strict "zero waste" policy.

All of Levitate's meat is from local farms. They get their mushrooms fresh from local forests and grow their own herbs. They even get seafood from local fish farms. Clearly, they take the Nordic concept of locally sourced ingredients very seriously. When you go to Levitate, the food on your plate was obtained that day. They don't even own a freezer.

Like all great restaurants, Levitate is mostly about the food but atmosphere is always important and their approach to the design of the space is worthy of note. Levitate's website describes it as "an oasis of tranquility in the heart of Prague." and i think that sums it up nicely. Walking into Levitate, you are truly transported to another place. It's not a large space but it's open and airy. It seats 22 but it could easily hold a few more. The creators of levitate, in keeping with a Nordic sense of  simple, clear and natural surroundings use lots of real plants, sparse furnishing and a bright and open space to create a unique dining environment. It really is an oasis. Just far enough from the bustle of tourists to make you feel like you've discovered a local favourite, which it's fast becoming.

As I said, Levitate is creating a bit of a local buzz and that buzz is mostly about the food. It would be accurate to call Levitate's food, "Asian fusion" but that would be telling only half the story. Chef and co founder, Chu Phong Duy has years of experience with Asian cooking but Levitate's policy of using only locally sourced ingredients, constantly challenges the limits of his creative ability. Much of that year of planning and preparation was spent experimenting and coming up with signature dishes. Chu is not able to take it easy now that Levitate is up and running. They plan to have a new menu every season, based on the best local ingredients available at that time. Every dish has been thoroughly tried and tested before it makes the menu but Chu's creative experimentation is a constant feature of Levitate's charm. If you find yourself there on a night that's not too busy, you can expect Chu to visit your table to talk about the meal, answer your questions and get a little feedback from you.

Levitate Restaurant fine dining in Prague
Levitate is the brain child of Thanh Nguyen. Thanh is of Vietnamese decent but born and raised in the Czech Republic. He knows Asian food because he grew up on it but as a born and raised European, Thanh understands European tastes and culinary desires. Thanh is part of that generation of Vietnamese Czechs who have one foot firmly planted in each culture, giving him the solid footing needed to take on a project like this.

Check out Levitate's website at (www.levitate.cz) to see their latest seasonal menu and click on the gallery option to have a look at the space itself but also the presentation of the food. The food is beautifully presented, using elements from nature in a fashion that stays in step with the Nordic theme. Thanh (George), Chu (Chris) and third partner Jiři Bosák have created more than just a restaurant. Levitate is a unique dining experience in Prague.

Steve Meyers

Levitate Prague
nám. Curieových 100/1, 110 00 Staré Město, Prague 1

Opening hours:
Tue - Sat: 18.00 - 22.30

+420 724 516 996