In Moscow the restaurant "Dining in the Dark" was opened by a famous Russian ophthalmologist Igor Medvedev in 2006. For six years of its existance, the restaurant has become a cult place. Everyday it is full of visitors: loving couples, groups of friends, thrill-seekers and others.
Last week my friends and I decided to go there for the first time. Even the open hall on the top of the restaurant is rather dark. The interior design of the visible part of the restaurant is very rich in elements and looks like a French cabaret. One of the walls is decorated by a panorama of Paris, on the other walls you will see big mirrors in graceful frames and photos of the last century.
Time spent in the restaurant is devided in different sessions (2 hours each). It is a real challenge to spend two hours in complete darkness. We were signed up for the session at 16:30, but they asked us to come there half an hour earlier, in order to get instructions and choose menu. The restaurant offers 5 different kinds of the menu: meat, fish, vegetarian, Japanese ones or menu with a suprise (in this case the cook or your waiter decides himself/herself what to bring to you).
If you come to the restaurant not alone, I advise everyone of your friends to order the same dishes, because it will be interesting to try to define on taste the ingredients of your dishes all together in the dark.
We were sitting at a big general table, but for extra 1000 rubles you can take a separate one.
We had to leave all our mobiles and other things, which could produce any sound or light, at the entrance to the dark room. Then all the visitors followed a blind waitress Elena in a single line and step-by-step plunged into the darkness. Having passed through some twisting corridors and cellars, we finally reached our table. The walls in the room were soft like in the mental house, in order to prevent any bodily injuries. We were in a state of shock as we had never been in the complete dark before. We lost the sense of space. Some of us felt like we were in a very small room, but others were sure that it was something boundless.
When the waitress brought us our drinks, I regreted that I ordered mulled wine. I was in white jeans and was afraid to spill the wine on them. The waitress took my hand and put a glass of wine in it. The first thing that you feel, dining in the dark, is the smell of food. I have never paid any attention to that before!
At first it was hard to eat with a fork and a knife, but later we got used to that. We found our first dish not very delicious, it had some harsh taste.
Our waitress Elena told us how they catch in the dark alcoholics, debauchees, rowdies, etc. Security guides watch attentively through an infrared camera what is going on in the room all the time. So you can feel safe there.
The next dish and dessert were very delicious. It was interesting to discover new tastes of the food.
We didn't feel how time passed. Soon our session was over and we started to move out from the dark in a single line again. I was the last person in the line and nearly got lost in the dark several times, but had finally reached the entrance too. Then we took back our things and sat at the table to see the bill and photos of our dishes.
Our bill was about 2000 rubles for food and 1000 rubles for drinks per one person. We were a little surprized by such expensive prices, but were happy to know that this sum will be donated to charity.
In conclusion, I would like to say that I really enjoyed this place. When you are in the dark, you begin to use all the five senses. You try to catch every sound, every word and rustle. Your intuition starts to work at a completely new level. A session in the dark gives you an opportunity to discover a new world of feelings and emotions and experience a real adveture! The dark is worth to deep in it at least one time!