Lingua Cafe at Cafe “Most’” / Кафе Мость
Цесовская Набережная 2
Thursdays 20:00 – ????
Entrance free, drinks from ~$3.
Phone: 706-388, Website: www.most-cafe.ru
Irkutsk isn’t a city which is known for its nightlife; there are very few clubs and bars and those that exist are generally the kind of tacky, overpriced places filled with bad music and obnoxious people which can be found in most Russian cities. Lingua Cafe, a weekly event occuring at Club “Most’” is one of the few things that make it worth occasionally going out in Irkutsk. Lingua Cafe is supposed to be a meet-and-greet for foreigners in Irkutsk and for locals who are interested in foreign languages. If you go regularly, you’ll soon meet nearly all of the foreigners residing in Irkutsk, as well quite a few of your classmates from the Linguistic University.
Lingua Cafe generally begins at 8 PM, although due to the small size of the club the time can be variable and the turnout varies greatly week to week – some weeks will see a large turnout of up to 50 people, while on quieter nights the number hovers around 20. The setup is fairly informal, with the dj-ing done by one of the employees from a laptop up on the small stage. Song requests are almost always accepted, and the playlist tends to focus on foreign music of all varieties. The club is largely divided into two rooms, an outer room with some benches where people tend to sit and chat, and the larger inner room with the bar and stage which gradually becomes dominated by dancing as the night wears on. There’s also a small private room off of the bar which is occasionally reserved by large groups. During the warmer months, the party usually spills out on to the street, with large groups of people gathering outside to smoke. Smoking is also allowed inside the club, though the smoke generally stays at a moderate level and is not quite so overpowering as at some Russian bars and clubs. Occasionally, on nights with an especially large crowd, the club may provide free drinks and/or blini, but don’t count on it. Most’ Cafe also has LGBTY events on other nights of the week and functions as Irkutsk’s only gay bar; be aware that there are some pictures of nude men on the walls.
Drinks at the club are reasonably cheap by Irkutsk standards, a beer or shot of vodka is approximately 100 rubles, a bottle of champagne is about 200 rubles, other beverages are similarly priced. There is also a menu with food, but be aware that any food you order will likely take an interminably long time to be prepared and will probably be overpriced and not very good. There isn’t any particular closing time for Lingua Cafe, but the party generally winds down around 6-7 am, conveniently at the same time that the dorm opens.