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Many central and eastern European railways offer passengers seasonal menus, local products and reasonable prices in their dining cars.


The table is set with a crisp white tablecloth, there’s a soft glow from a tablelamp and outside the window, snow-dusted trees are whizzing past at 120 kilometres per hour.

This is the dining car on one of Czechia’s state-operated EuroCity trains, which link Prague with Budapest, Bratislava, Warsaw and Berlin.

Seasoned train travellers hail it as one of Europe’s best restaurants on wheels, with regional food prepared fresh to order and craft beer bespoke-brewed for the company.

Many central and eastern European railways offer passengers seasonal menus, local products and reasonable prices in their dining cars.

If you’re tired of dry sandwiches and instant coffee – not to mention aeroplane food – here are the best train journeys in Europe for an onboard meal.

Savour steak and dumplings on Czechia’s EuroCity trains

X account @_DiningCar is the social media font of knowledge on Europe’s train catering and it gives plenty of airtime to Ceske Drahy, the national rail operator in Czechia.

The company’s EuroCity trains feature dining cars with proper cutlery and draught beer on most services.

According to journalist Koen, who founded the travel website Paliparan, his meal started with goulash soup followed by svíčková, a traditional Czech dish of thinly cut sirloin steak with bread dumplings in a cream sauce.

Paired with a couple of pints of Pilsner Urquell, it cost Koen around €25.

Other mains include pork schnitzel with potato salad and roast chicken in a black beer sauce – costing between €11 and €13 – while desserts include multilayered cakes and pancakes with cream.

Warm up with soups and strudel on Austria’s Railjet trains

Austria’s flagship ÖBB Railjet services link major cities including Vienna, Salzburg and Innsbruck as well as crossing the border into Hungary, Germany and Switzerland.

Their restaurant car is a little more utilitarian without the frills of tablecloths and curtains but the food options are attractive.

The menu changes seasonally. The current winter edition features warming soups like spinach and smoked cheese or beef broth with liver dumplings and root vegetables at around €6.

There are jumbo salads with bulgar wheat and vegetables or breaded chicken and substantial mains (costing between €12 and €15) like Tyrolean Gröstl (roast potato slices with bacon) and warm cabbage salad or pork schnitzel.

Save room for dessert – a journey on an Austrian train is incomplete without a Viennese milk and cheese strudel or pancakes with a speculoos filling.

Chomp on currywurst on Germany’s ICE trains

Many of Germany’s sleek ICE trains – which whisk passengers all around the country and to neighbouring Belgium, Austria and France – boast a Bordgastronomie dining car.

The menu is extensive, with regional hams and cheese for breakfast, a plethora of sweet treats and a kids’ menu.

The mains include classic options like chilli con carne, lentil hotpot with sausage and veal fricassee. But on a German train, it’s the currywurst and fries you want to favour – and there’s even a vegan version.


Squeeze in an Alsace-style tartes flambées too, a kind of bacon and onion flatbread, and wash it all down with a pint of Knärzje lager or a glass of 2019 Riesling.

Feast on pork and pierogies on Poland’s InterCity trains

On some of Poland’s InterCity trains (check your service before boarding so as not to be disappointed) passengers can dine in the group’s WARS restaurant cars.

If you want a taste of the country’s regional food while speeding through its bucolic landscapes, this is where to go.

Soups of the day come with Polish sourdough bread while mains include Polish pork chop and a tortilla with pulled pork.

The stars of the show, however, are the pierogies – well-stuffed dumplings served with meat and lard or sweet caramelised onions.


Don’t forget to sample the Polish vodkas too, of course.

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