Stinky cheese and tripe soup: 50 classic Czech foods loathed by foreigners

TasteAtlas has released a ranking of the traditional Czech foods that its readers rated a little hard to stomach. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 28.10.2023 12:33:00 (updated on 30.10.2023) Reading time: 3 minutes

TasteAtlas is at it again and this time they're coming for your párek v rohlíku. The food rankings site has released a list of the 50 Worst Rated Czech Foods & Beverages which include some real head-scratchers as well as some true stomach-turners.

Acknowledging that food preferences are inherently subjective, TasteAtlas said it "aims to capture this diversity of perspectives through community ratings of dishes from around the world."

The ranking was compiled by analyzing 6,000 ratings and claims to "ignore bot, nationalist or local patriotic ratings, and give additional value to the ratings of users that the system recognizes as knowledgeable."

The site says its ranking should not be seen as the final global conclusion about food but rather as an effort to "promote local foods, instill pride in traditional dishes, and arouse curiosity about dishes you haven’t tried."

The list takes aim at everything from key Czech spices (kmín) and ingredients (mak) to beer brands (Černá Hora) and even dessert (bublanina). Some of the ratings make total sense (the country's infamous stinky cheese, Olomoucké tvarůžky) while others are sure to elicit outrage from lovers of Czech cuisine (plum dumplings, as if!).

Meanwhile, a number of foods on the list are loathed by Czechs themselves. Rice pudding (rýžový nákyp) and buchtičky se šodó, a mainstay of school canteens, make an appearance as do a host of smoked, pickled, and jellied meats primarily enjoyed by men over 60 at the pub or during the masopust season.

Here's a little taster of the top Czech foods that made the TasteAtlas audience lose their appetite. (Note: number eight on the list was the Slovak sheep's milk drink žinčica and thus not included in this recap.) For the full ranking head over to the site and don't forget to tell us your least favorite Czech food in the poll below.

Jitrnice and jelito

Photo of Czech sausages via Lokal Hamburk
Photo of Czech sausages via Lokal Hamburk

Coming in at 10 and 9 on the list respectively, these typical Czech sausages consist of pork cuts, various internal organs, and pork liver. They make an appearance during the Czech Mardi Gras season during the traditional pig-sticking (jelito is a blood sausage).

Starobrno beer

Starbrno beer / image via Wikipedia
Starbrno beer / image via Wikipedia

At number 7, Brněnské pivo, also known as Starobrněnské pivo, is a beer produced in Brno district. It comes as a non-alcoholic beer, light tap beer (světlé výčepní), dark beer (tmavé výčepní), and a lager.

Tripe soup (dršťková polévka)

Photo via Wikipedia commons

Dršťková polévka (number 6) is a Czech tripe soup made by braising beef tripe with onions and paprika. Variations exist across regions. The soup has a thick, reddish consistency and mild heat. Smoked meats are sometimes added.

Noodles with poppyseeds (nudle s mákem)

Noodles with poppy seed is a Czech classic. Photo via iStock - meteo021

Ranking at number 5, nudle s mákem is a simple Czech dish of wide pasta noodles covered in melted butter and then topped with poppy seeds and sugar. The dish's exact origins remain obscure, though similar versions exist across Central and Eastern Europe under different names.

Fish soup (rybí polévka)

Czech rybí polévka (fish soup). Photo: iStock / phbcz

Landing in the fourth place on the ranking is rybí polévka, the traditional Czech fish soup that is served as a part of the festive Christmas Eve dinner. It is typically prepared with carp, various root vegetables, and different spices, but some versions also use white wine, cream, or fish roe.

Mushroom kuba (houbový kuba)

Houbový kuba photo via Wikipedia

Traditionally associated with Christmas time, houbový kuba in third place is a Czech take on risotto that combines barley with dried forest mushrooms, seasoned with caraway and marjoram, and baked casserole-style.

Tuzemský rum


Invented in the 19th century as a substitute for the original Caribbean rum, tuzemský rum (domestic rum), made from potatoes and beets, not sugarcane, can no longer be called rum due to European regulations. Tuzemák (grabbing the second spot in the ranking) is still produced in the same way and consumed in cocktails as well as used in the traditional Czech Christmas cookies (vánoční cukroví).

Carp (kapr)

Fried and breaded carp. Photo: iStock, zi3000.

Topping the list of things TasteAtlas users can't stomach is the Christmas-time staple carp. Known as Třeboňský kapr as most that make it to the table are reared in fish ponds in the Třeboň Basin, the fish is a healthy if bony delicacy and certainly an acquired taste.

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