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Feb 16, 2010 07:55 AM

German Food in Manhattan?

Looking for a place for a family birthday celebration - the birthday girl loves German food. Is there anything in Manhattan? Zum Stammtisch in Queens is geographically difficult for some of us. Schnitzel Haus in Brooklyn does not have many good reviews. Looking for any suggestions; Manhattan not necessary, Brooklyn is okay, Queens if near subway transportation. TIA.

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  1. Loreley is your best bet, or Zum Schneider.

    Avoid Old Heidelberg and Rolf's.

    If you are willing to do Austrian....Blaue Gans and Cafe Katja are both good.

    3 Replies
    1. re: gutsofsteel

      why avoid heidleberg? i have german friends who swear by it

      1. re: thew

        my meal at heidleberg was so so. nothing special. my schnitzel was super oily..

        1. re: thew

          The food is mediocre at best, and overpriced for what it is.

          Hey, just because somebody is German doesn't mean they have good taste in food. :-)

      2. Danube might be an option, although it may be a bit stuffy for a birthday celebration...

        3 Replies
        1. re: StheJ

          Danube is Austrian. And closed for over a year. Idea: Leiderhosen.

          1. re: chow_gal

            Just in case the OP wants to look it up: it is spelled Lederhosen.

            1. re: gutsofsteel

              Thanks for the info on Danube. Surprisingly I'm not all that surprised or dismayed... I did enjoy the artwork though and the schnitzel was quite good.

        2. If Brooklyn is okay then I would head to Radagast in Williamsburg. It's a huge beer hall that is very family freindly, has great beers and some pretty awesome food. The brat on a pretzel roll is amazing. Plus it's within walking distance from the subway (about a 10 minute walk).

          For Manhattan I would go with Zum Schneider. I love the food and it has a fun atmosphere during the day. At night it gets a little bit too rowdy so depending on your familyit might get a little too much but it's always a fun time. Enjoy!

          1. Heidelberg is an excellent choice for German food. Their Jaeger schnitzel is excellent as are their potato pancakes.

            6 Replies
            1. re: ellenost

              What about Blaue Gans down in Tribeca? They've got the curry wursts, brats, and a great wurst platter, great spaetzle (one of my german/austrian restaurant tests which they passed with flying colors), vienerschnitzel prepared four different ways (I stuck with the traditional and it was nice and crispy and came with delicious potato salad). also traditional german/austrian beers on tap. Was there fri night for the first time. It can definitely hold a big group too if you need a table for 8-12. They also had a good looking dessert menu but we were too stuffed. My one caveat is that I had probably the worst waiter I can remember. She seemed totally checked out but compared to the warm welcome by the rest of the staff, I hope it was just an anomaly or an off day. I would still go back.

              1. re: preppie foodie

                I suggested Blaue Gans and Cafe Katja upthread. I like both of those places a lot, but they are not German, they are Austrian.

              2. re: ellenost

                those were super greasy as well (pancakes).

                1. re: smokeandapancake

                  The potato pancakes were great (not greasy at all) both times that I've had them. Some people may prefer a dense/dry style of potato pancake (not me).

                  1. re: ellenost

                    i heart grease, butter and oil, but this was doused in it....just my experience. maybe an off day...

                    1. re: smokeandapancake

                      That has been my experience there too. Everything either uneasoned, or with nothing but enough salt to choke a horse, and everything very greasy.

              3. I'm in agreement with those who would suggest avoiding Heidelberg.

                Lederhosen would be my preference. Service is excellent, there are party platters if you want to feed a crowd on a budget and the large tables in back will leave plenty of space for all your friends. Zum Schneider is a good time, but it is sometimes too crowded to be pleasant in my experience. Loreley has good food, however service leaves much to be desired. I've had servers there who don't know how to pour beers and have gotten orders wrong because they don't know their own German menu.

                The food at Cafe Katja is Austrian, which is somewhat different, though if your friend is an all-around Central European fan, Katja is very good.