- Toot Jan 17, 2007 04:10 PM
I am looking for suggestions in Berlin. I will be there for a week in business. Mostly looking for inexpensive places, take out and places where it would be ok to dine alone. A couple of higher end suggestions too, since I may be going out with co-workers one night. My hotel is in the Under den Linden area, nearby the Galleries Lafayette.
First time in Berlin, so I welcome any suggestions, thanks.
Everyone loves Monsieur Vuong in Mitte. In Prenzlauer Berg around Kollwitz Platz and across Danziger there are all sorts of cool, moderate cafes where you can pick and choose whatever you like. In Berlin, cheap food comes in Turkish, Lebanese, imbiss-looking places. These places fill you cheaply and moderately without much style. The cafes have style. But, strange and stereotypical as it sounds, compared to lots of other folks around the world, Berliners are not so simply interested in food and it shows. Bread and coffee are higher art forms unless you are at the top end.
I apologize in advance because I cannot remember the name of this restaurant, but it is very easy to find and on your side of town. It is located right at the Brandenburg Gate on the left hand side if you are looking down Under den Linden into East Berlin. I was there last year and it is a wonderful new Berlin type of restaurant. I was there in August and had this incredible Chanterelle tasting menu as they were in season. Anyway, give it a try you will not be disappointed and if you do, please respond with the name of the place.
that would probably be Vau, the only michelin-starred restaurant in berlin. i had a prix fixe lunch there on a business trip. it was good, but not earth-shattering. great lunch deal though (can't remember exactly how much). given the general lack of fine-dining in berlin, it's probably the best you can do.
Stayed at the Adlon a few weeks ago right near Brandenburg Gate. Higher end recos within walking distance of your locale--Margaux and Vau. Moderate---Lutter and Wegner. Great bar scene at Newton. Cafe Einstein good for light breakfast. Connected to Galleries Lafayette is a shopping center with great people watching and good light meals or drinks in a beautiful lobby. A beautiful space with great food is Maxwell. Avoid Aigner.
here's a copy of my tripadvisor review for Vau. it was a horrible experience - poor service, expensive, food was hit or miss, stuffy environment.
Vau, what a disappointment...
i think the restaurant must be resting on its laurels since it received a michelin star 9 years ago. the service was poor, the food hit highs (lobster and beef were great) and lows (one forgettable course which i can;t recall and a dessert that was 20 minutes late and not worth the wait), and the ambiance was muted and bland.
the tasting menu ranged from 85-125 euros per person. i had the 85 euro version without foie gras and cheese course. there were several mix-ups about who got what at our table of 8. 5 of us participated in the tasting menu and 3 ordered a la carte. i was surprised that it wasn't required that the entire table order either a la carte or the tasting menu, but soon i realized that was the first sign that this wasn't going to be a haute cuisine experience. our table had to remind the waitstaff several times what we ordered, and as mentioned, my dessert was apparently forgotten and served after 45 minutes wait.
compared to the top-rated restaurants in a similar price range in NYC - eleven madison park, tocqueville, daniel, blue hill, etc - this was a real disappointment.
we had a much better eating experience at the winterfeldplatz market on saturdays. great grilled fish, bratwurst, fresh juice, melted cheese sandwiches... all for less than 10 euros!
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A short walk up Friedrichstrasse is Oranienburger Strasse with several places I would recommend for the low-key eating alone (or with others). Cafe Orange and Cafe Oren. They are on the same side of the street and pretty close to each other. There is an U-Bahn stop (Oranienburger Tor) or an S-Bahn (Oranienburger Strasse). If you like Indian (Northern), Amrit at Oranienburgerstr. 45 is good. On the opposite side of the street from Orange or Oren is a bar with a large variety of beers (100 different kinds) and whiskey (40+) , caled Aufsturz. Also low-key, the place you'd go to read or just talk over a few beers.
Further down Unter den Linden, behind the University under the S-Bahn tracks really close to the Museum Insel on Georgenstr. 2 (you can take the 100 bus if you don't want to walk) is Die Zwölf Apostel, which has a lunch special you can't beat...half price pizzas, very good.
As for really cheap and really Berlin, Turkish food stands selling Döner Kebabs is the way to go, if you don't mind standing up and a high likelihood of yummy drippy garlic sauce. Döner connoisseurs all have their favorite place...and I haven't lived there in a while so my favorite may not be there anymore, but it WAS at the norhtwest corner of Torstr. and Brunnenstr. right outside the U-Bhf Rosenthaler Platz, which is on the U8 line.
Forgive the unscientific statistical approach , but keep in mind that 90% of curries made in Berlin will be cream-based. As a result, 95% of all Indian restaurants and imbisses are serving curries which are virtually indistinguishable from one another. The people here don't seem phased. One interesting alternative are the African oriented Massai places on Goltzstrasse in Schoneberg -- a cool, inexpensive eating street, and Prenzlauer Berg's Lychener Strasse, another cool inexpensive eating area.