Teremok is basically the McDonald’s of Russia: It’s just as popular and beloved, but instead of serving burgers and fries, it serves blinis and borscht. When the first Teremok opened in Manhattan last year, Russian expats went wild. In this episode of Cult Following, host Serena Dai grabs a friend who knows the fare and stops by to see what stirs all the hype.
Dai and her guest Talia Lavin stock up on caviar, blinis, and herring. Both diners love the blini, a thin, bouncy pancake that’s similar to a crepe, and here filled with bright crunchy salmon roe. Another favorite is the kvass, a fermented beverage made with rye: “In practice,” Lavin says of the drink, “it’s a lot like drinking a glass of bread.” To cap off the meal, the pair samples one more blini, this time filled with sweet preserves. It’s just like babushka used to make.