Olympic Eats: What They’re Serving in Sochi

Health & Fitness

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Richard Heathcote/Getty Images(SOCHI, Russia) — Sure, there may be some athletes competing in the Olympics next month. But what we’re really interested in is what they’ll be eating. The menu has to meet the nutritional needs of the athletes while satisfying the palates of each ethnicity, but it’s also an opportunity to try some Russian specialties.

“Borscht is just one of the examples of Russian dishes that will be served in the Olympic Park,” said Maria Losyukova, a Sochi spokeswoman. “Guests and participants will be able to sample other classic dishes such as pelmeni and shashlyk. There will also be a wide variety of Russian traditional hot pastries, cakes and traditional tea from a samovar together with blini.”

If that was gibberish to you, check out our handy Russian dish definitions, along with a detailed look at what exactly goes into feeding the Olympics below.

By the numbers:

  • 2,100,000: Servings of food for volunteers
  • 70,000: Gallons of borscht expected to be prepared and served during the Games
  • 40,000: Total area of catering outlets, in meters squared
  • 30,000: Seating area capacity
  • 8,000: Number of chefs, sous-chefs, cooks, waiters, bartenders and cashiers working the Games
  • 7,500: Tons of food prepared and consumed during the Games
  • 2,000: Unique dishes for the athletes
  • 1,000: Catering points
  • 15: Average price, in dollars, of lunch for one at the Olympic Park

By the dish:

  • Blini: Thin Russian pancakes, similar to crepes
  • Borscht: Beet soup
  • Pelmeni: Russian dumplings, usually filled with minced meat, fish or mushrooms
  • Samovar: A heated metal container traditionally used to heat and boil water for tea
  • Shashlyk: Russian shish kebab (meat skewer)

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