Gostilna s prenocisci Malovec, Divaca 10-2012

I'm still unsure as to the actual name of this restaurant. The hotel it is attached to is called Penzion Riznik. The higher grade hotel it is related to down the road is Hotel Malovec. Tripadvisor lists this place as Gostilna s prenocisci Malovec. So be it.

Divaca is a tiny town in Slovenia for which the only reason to visit is enroute to the Skocjan caves. Scenic walking requires sustenance so it was pleasing to note that in this town containing only one gostilna, it was a very good one.

A specialty of Slovenia I was yet to try was horse steak. I have eaten small pieces of horse meat before in Japan and Australia but this was an opportunity to try an entire slab. All Slovenian restaurants seem to also offer Beef Soup with Noodles. I'm not sure what makes this such a local dish but thought my final meal in the country should cover all these missed bases.

The Beef Soup with Noodles €2.5 was quite simply as described, a relatively weak beef flavoured clear broth with essentially instant noodles. I wouldn't get it again.

Horse Beefsteak €15 was a medium-rare cut of eye fillet. An great quality piece of meat with the soft tenderness of the leanest beef equivalent. A little marbling may have made it even better but neither fillets nor horses are known for fat. If you haven't tried it before, horse has quite possibly the strongest game flavour of any meat I've tried. Be prepared to dampen it with mustard.

Finally to finish off I succumbed to an Apple Strudel €2.5. I am a fan of any apple dessert and have tried them all over the world; this was clearly the best I've ever had in the world. Crisp flaky pastry topped with icing sugar housed the greatest apple filling of slightly crunchy fruit strips with a moist core. Beautiful texture and flavour. I was so happy.

Next time I would order the Apple Strudel. I could have eaten a buffet for hours and would still have space for this. If "game" enough, Horse Steak will be memorable. If you ethically object, Squid dishes ordered by other people looked and smelt delicious and large enough to make you happy.