Paninoteka Restaurant… Ljubljana’s Premier Sandwich Hub
Paninoteka At A Glance
Set by the iconic Cobblers’ Bridge in the heart of Old Ljubljana, with magnificent views over historic town and majestic Ljubljana Castle above it… there you’ll find Paninoteka, one of Ljubljana’s most popular mid-priced restaurants.
Paninoteka is famous for its sandwiches but it’s also a full-fledged restaurant and café. Open 7 days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner, chances are a visitor in Ljubljana will stop here at least once.
Choose from à la carte menu or from a selection of daily lunch specials… or go for one of their legendary panini sandwiches.
More on Paninoteka below… or jump to…
Eating out is something my family and I like to do. Luckily for us Ljubljana is in no short supply of tempting eateries.
On occasion the adventurous bug takes hold and we try someplace new. Other times we opt for the ‘tried and tested’ usual standbys, Paninoteka restaurant being one of these.
Paninoteka—which translates to ‘Sandwich Place’—is a friendly, family-run restaurant that serves an interesting mix of Italian and local cuisine. From its humble beginnings selling hearty sandwiches and soups back in the 90s, this small outfit has grown in popularity attracting a loyal customer following.
Paninoteka’s Terrace Overlooking Cobblers Bridge
We’ve been regulars of Paninoteka for several years and over time have become well acquainted with its owner, Gašper Žitko. Gašper’s focus has always been on simplicity and fresh produce. The ethos being – flavor before fad!
The pasta and breads are produced in-house; the seafood, fresh off the boat; the cheese smooth and melting. And, let’s not forget the eatery’s key player – mouthwatering sandwiches.
From the standard Slovenian classics—Karst, Domestic, Peasant and Mortadella to the more exotic ones—Thai, Greek, Popeye and Salmon, there’s something to suit all tastes.
Having found ourselves a comfy spot in the fresh outdoors, we hummed and hawed between ourselves agonizing over the menu – decisions, decisions! All the while our friendly waitress ever at hand to assist.
Our glasses of water were constantly replenished and each of our main course choices kindly and patiently explained. Staff can make or break a restaurant and Paninoteka has some great people on their books.
Finally, we settled for…
Spaghetti with Smoked Salmon and Capers
Salad with Roast Beef and Chicken Fillet with Ham
Chicken Fillet with Ham, Spinach and Mascarpone Cheese
Service was quick and within only a short time our food was placed piping hot before us. Everything was cooked beautifully, the pasta dish subtle and creamy; the sandwich unravelled into crisp and chewy ciabatta generously filled with melt-in-the-mouth tuna salad; the roast beef deliciously tender; and the chicken fillet succulent and juicy. The kitchen staff were accommodating and happy to remove or add-on ingredients to suit our personal tastes. Simply delish!
Location & Setting
You couldn’t ask for a better spot to lunch out. Located in a pedestrian zone of old Ljubljana, the restaurant is happily nestled on Jurcic Square – cobbled and deliciously charming. Coming by car? Don’t worry, there are two handy parking spots minutes from the restaurant, Congress Square and NUK II. And, if you’re environmentally conscious, Ljubljana’s rent-a-bike scheme, BicikeLJ is an awesome way to get around. Check out my page on BicikeLJ rental bikes.
Directly opposite Paninoteka is the ever popular Cobbler’s Bridge, home to a feast of street performances and festivals.
Teo Colori & Band on Cobblers’ Bridge
I love going for a lazy stroll along the banks of the Ljubljana river that gently meanders past. No better way to stretch out those limbs after a satisfying meal. And of course, the cherry on the cake, Ljubljana Castle sitting up on high adds the perfect finishing touch to the scenic vista.
This is an ideal venue to unwind with friends over a cup of coffee or tea. Or, for those looking for a brief respite from busy city living without actually having to leave the city! The old world architecture and colors of the buildings running parallel to the river’s banks has the most relaxing effect. Breakfast, lunch and dinner can be enjoyed either al fresco or in the air conditioned interior. The outdoor seating space is intimate and shaded with bistro style tables and chairs.
Al fresco Ljubljana style
The recently renovated building is bright, airy and spacious, filled with warm colors and appetizing aromas. Arched ceilings, large windows and sleek wooden tables and chairs create a welcoming atmosphere. The ambiance is further elevated by the great choice of background music.
Warm and welcoming interior
As I forked the last morsel of my plate, I felt that sweet sensation of being pleasantly satisfied with my meal. I thought how delicious simple ingredients cooked well could be. That coupled with killer views and attentive staff, what more could you ask for from a lunch out.
Posting about Paninoteka, Mom?
I know what you’re thinking, how about a cheap bill? Well, there too we were in luck. The bill, a very reasonable €35,80 (considering the central location and excellent menu), made this an entirely top-notch experience in my books.