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Cheap to Mid-Range Kreuzberg Eateries?

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mmichaels Apr 22, 2009 04:33 PM

Hello--

My husband and I will be in Berlin for three weeks in June, staying in an apartment in Kreuzberg. We'll do quite a bit of our own cooking, but please tell me about your fave doner kebab stand, the best pizzeria, best Thai joint, etc. Having lived in Germany for many years as a teen, not too keen on German food, even of the nouveau sort, but rather in "ethnic" eateries.

I've done some hunting on the board going back a year or so, but am interested to hear, in particular, about where to get the best doner kebabs, falafel, etc. Yum!

Thank you in advance!

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  1. linguafood RE: mmichaels Apr 23, 2009 09:03 AM

    Hey. Which part of Xberg will you be in, 36 or 61 -- i.e. the southwestern or eastern part?

    On Bergmannstr. (Xberg 61), Knofi is great for both shopping for Middle Eastern/Turkish/Greek foods, and snack plates you can eat right there.

    I like the Thai place on Bergmannstr., Phuket. Just make sure you tell them you want it THAI-SCHARF... that is, if you like it hot '-D

    Great pizza can be had at Fratelli la Bionda at the eastern end of Bergmannstr.

    German (but awesome) is the restaurant "Henne" -- best fried chicken in town.

    The shawarma at Sesam on Gneisenaustr. is pretty good, though the best döner can be had in Neukölln - Imren on Boppstr....

    If you need more tips, feel free to write more about your location!

    17 Replies
    1. re: linguafood
      m
      mmichaels RE: linguafood Apr 24, 2009 09:47 AM

      Thanks linguafood---thought I could rely on you for some awesome recommendations! We'll be in the eastern part, near Schlesisches Tor. And since we'll be so close to Friedrichshain, any additional advice on that would be great as well.

      Thanks so much!!

      1. re: mmichaels
        linguafood RE: mmichaels Apr 24, 2009 12:18 PM

        Ah, so my recs won't help *that* much, as they were in a different area. Though Henne is still in reach, and IMO soooo worth it.

        Aldemir Ice cream comes to mind, on Falckensteinstr. They also have take-out pizza across that seems to be pretty popular.

        Azul on Skalitzer has decent pasta and good burgers -- according to friends. Note that I have not been there myself.

        A great Italian place in F'hain is on Kopernikusstr. -- Miseria é Nobiltá, really good food. The place is tiny, so maybe make a rez.

        I also like Schneeweiss (also in F'hain) -- creative German food at very friendly prices. I should mention that each time I've gone, there was 'something' not right with the food... i.e. risotto underdone, or the meat... but given the good deal it's hard to be overly critical (which I may well be '-)).

        Jolesch in Xberg on Muskauerstr. has awesome Wiener Schnitzel if you do want some "German" food, and Hasir still makes good Döner, even though the service is abysmal. I recommend take-out!!

        Sol Y sombra on Oranienplatz for excellent tapas, Morgenland on Skalitzer for fabulous brunch.

        Amrit on Oranienstr. for mediocre but tasty Indian food. Really good Indian food is hard to come by in Berlin...

        K. This should help you out a bit more. If you understand/can read German, I highly recommend checking out www.qype.com, the European equivalent of Yelp. Though it is slowly going the way of yelp, i.e. going down the shitter, there are still plenty of trustworthy recs (not alone my personal recs, www.qype.com/people/Eat_Berlin -- most are in German, some in English).

        And I'll be in b-town starting next week, so help is never far!

        Juten Appetit!!! :-D

        1. re: linguafood
          m
          mmichaels RE: linguafood Apr 24, 2009 02:40 PM

          Believe me, all the recommendations are greatly appreciated and it's so cool that you took the time to write all that up! We walk A LOT and are U-Bahn savvy, so nothing is too, too far away.

          And yes, I have a distinct feeling that we'll be at Henne quite often.

          Between my husband and me, we're pretty proficient in German, so the tidbit about qype is awesome! Will check that out now.

          Danke, danke, danke!

          1. re: mmichaels
            linguafood RE: mmichaels May 21, 2009 05:26 AM

            BTW, a new place that's been getting great reviews is Schlesisch Blau -- heading there Sat night & can report back if interested....

          2. re: linguafood
            StevenFro RE: linguafood May 20, 2009 01:49 PM

            I looked at some of the restaurant reviews on Qype. It was fun to check out, but I was surprised at all the positive reviews. Everything seems to be 4- and 5-stars. I thought Berliners were more critical! The worst anyone seemed to say was, "I don't know what all the hype is about." The problem is one is left with a long list of interesting restaurants -- not all of which can be good. Can they?

            1. re: StevenFro
              linguafood RE: StevenFro May 21, 2009 05:25 AM

              Huh. Not sure about that. Just go and read the recent shit storm that has hit Due Forni, a HIGHLY overhyped & overrated pizza joint in Prenzlauer Berg that is finally getting its comeuppance.

              Also, there have been some legal battles over negative reviews (surprisingly, given the decidedly less letigious German society), so users may be a bit more careful... I certainly have no problem writing bad reviews and telling it how it is.

              1. re: linguafood
                desylicious RE: linguafood May 23, 2009 12:28 AM

                Re: shitstorm- What does it say? Does it also apply to my beloved cranky punk pizza place on the corner Il Casolare?

                1. re: desylicious
                  linguafood RE: desylicious May 23, 2009 03:46 AM

                  Apart from the 'attitude' they seem to think is their shtick -- which, let's be honest, is just another way of basically telling their guests to fück off -- they've had some hygiene issues reported and posted online on the newly installed "Ekelliste" of the Pankow/Prenzlberg Bezirksamt.

                  I do like the mothership, Casolare, better. Less attitude. Tho I'm not sure the pizza is all THAT great.

                  1. re: linguafood
                    desylicious RE: linguafood May 27, 2009 05:07 AM

                    Eeeew.

              2. re: StevenFro
                dutchgrub RE: StevenFro May 22, 2009 10:56 AM

                Agree with you, StevenFro, on ratings on Qype being overly positive. Noticed that many times for Amsterdam where I hang out. There are several average pancake houses and even the food section of a department store receiving 5 stars. On average!

                I don't think Yelp is much different. You have to read through the posts to get a feel for what is good and what is not.

                Knowing the people who understand food and write good posts is key. If you go with www.qype.com/people/Eat_Berlin, you'll be fine!

                dutchgrub
                --
                www.dutchgrub.com

                1. re: dutchgrub
                  linguafood RE: dutchgrub May 22, 2009 11:05 AM

                  >blushing<

                  thanks, dutchgrub :-D. always happy to help spread the word about good food in my hometown!!

              3. re: linguafood
                desylicious RE: linguafood May 23, 2009 12:48 AM

                What she said. Except that you shouldn't bother with Amrit. there is so much better food that you shouldn't bother with this place.

                As for my favorite doener, I love Imren on Boppstrasse 4. The mid-block imbiss not the place on the corner. Yes, i know I sound like a broken record. Fresh real meat instead of pressed mystery meat and they roll out and bake the dough fresh for the Turkish pizza and durum doener. La Femme is a Turkish cafe chain that serves a nice Turkish breakfast. There is one near the swimming pool on Spreewald platz.

                Near there is Cafe Morena for regular German breakfast and a nice atmosphere The place is beautifully tiled inside and they have nice outdoor seating. Good for drinks in the early evening also. If the place is packed head for Marx or La Femme on the same square.

                There is a small Vietnamese place on Skalitzer right under the Goerlitzer U-bahn stop. It has a very limited menu but it is very fresh and hip. Like most M Voung knock-offs but in your hood and cheaper. On Skalitzer and Lausitzer there is an Egyptian place that is really reasonable and has an exotic eat-on-the -floor dining room.

                I'm sure there's more. Will have to think about it...

                1. re: desylicious
                  m
                  mmichaels RE: desylicious May 23, 2009 01:48 AM

                  Thanks desylicious, et al!

                  If Amrit is bad, can you tell us where (hopefully in the 'hood) to find good Indian food. We just had a bad experience in Amsterdam at the Balti House and are dying to find some GOOD Indian while in Berlin.

                  And will definitely check out that doner place--am looking forward to a properly layered and prepared doner kebab!

                  1. re: mmichaels
                    linguafood RE: mmichaels May 23, 2009 03:47 AM

                    OK, as we've said -- good Indian is nearly impossible to find. Try Namaskar. Apparently, it's one of the few 'better' places, which -- given the 'competition', doesn't have to mean anything...

                    1. re: linguafood
                      StevenFro RE: linguafood May 23, 2009 09:35 AM

                      First, a big thank you to lingua and desy. Going through the Berlin posts, you guys have been incredibly generous with your time and experience in helping us visitors to the Stadt. We owe you a major debt of gratitiude.
                      As for qype, it may have something to do with the way I was browsing. I think I was just looking at the top recommendations in each neighborhood, so that may explain why things were so positive. Of course, that's what I want to know: what's good?
                      Speaking of qype and "mid-range Kreuzberg eateries", the topic of this thread, two places got very good recommendations that haven't been mentioned on Chowhound: Mustafas Gemuese Kebab on Mehringdamm and a Vietnamese place called 3 Moms on Hornstr. Any experience with either of these places?
                      Also, lingua is always raving about Henne, but the qype-line gives the nod to Huehnerhaus. Thoughts?
                      Lastly, do you have the names of those Vietnamese and Egyptian places, Desy?
                      Thanks again for all the assistance. I'm eagerly awaiting my trip in July.

                      1. re: StevenFro
                        desylicious RE: StevenFro May 27, 2009 05:33 AM

                        I think the Huenerhaus is just a stand, not a sit down resto. You can get a half chicken and fries to eat there or to take away. Very tasty, very salty. The Henne is a proper sit down place- dark and traditional inside, nice garden outside. Very limited menu as people come there for the freshly fried chicken they make to order (takes a while). So- beer, chicken, coleslaw, potato salad, schnapps, done. Last May my boyfriend had his birthday dinner in the garden there (this year, Oderquelle).

                        The Indian situation is strange. My SO says that they used to be better, more diverse, larger range of offerings. In the last few years they have become popular and hip, but the menus are now all the same- mediocre at best and so repetitive.

                        Vietnamese - there are a lot of places like this, but this is the one we went to as it was under the workplace. Fresh and light offerings, perfect for summer.
                        Hoai Nam - Kreuzberg
                        * Adresse: Skalitzer Str. 103, U-Bahnhof Görlitzer Bahnhof, 10997 Berlin
                        * Telefon: 017624199782

                        Chandra Kumari- an indian place that is better than most but you have to ask them to spice it up. Make them believe you.
                        Gneisenaustrasse 4, 10961 Berlin

                        Egyptian - dont know the name but its on the corner of Skarlitzer on Lausitzerplatz. you cant miss it.

                        If you are in Mitte, Clärchens Ballhaus has a beautiful garden, too. Ask for the pizza to be well done. Nice breakfast alternative. Close to shopping but not overrun by tourists (just expat moms and babies).

                        1. re: desylicious
                          r
                          robincurtis RE: desylicious May 28, 2009 10:19 AM

                          can I suggest that you move beyond the mid-range and go to Hartmann's on Fichtestrasse - or order from the daily menu at Jolesch and don't just stick to the other Austrian (not German) food there... They are both awesome places. Let them suggest different wines for each course.
                          Also: Asian food tends to suck in Berlin - especially compared, say, to Toronto. Stick to Turkish and European adn you will be better off. It is really just beginning to develop here; asian places are a whole heck of a lot better than they were 10 years ago. But they still are just ok...
                          Also: Il Casolare in Kreuzberg had no problems with cleanliness. Just the location in Prenzlauer Berg (Il Due Forni).

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