To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever had bad food in Berlin. So if you forget all your printed restaurant lists in your airbnb-apartment, your smartphone is out of battery and you just go with your guts, I think you’ll be just fine. But people keep asking me where to find good food and these are places, where I keep going back.
Disclaimer: Pictures have been taken hungry, with a phone and with no intention to publish them in a blog, but they’ll help you get the idea.
Another disclaimer: Restaurant scene is very, very lively in Berlin, new good restaurants and cafés pop out every week and the amount of restaurants is crazy. So I will update this page time to time. My places-to-eat -list is longer than me. But this is a SMALL Berlin guide, so the idea is to give you a few tips, more on my Instagram.
Take a plate, teller, not a buffet. Trust me, you’ll be completely full, but you don’t have that icky feeling after you’ve eaten a bit of everything. Scrambled eggs, ruherei, is also always a good choice.
If you are in Mitte, go to Café Fleury (Weinbergsweg 20). Beautiful, sympathetic and comfy café with a nice terrace, that serves excellent breakfast plates, every day of a week.
If you are in Kreuzberg, check out Tante Emma (Köpenickerstraße 1). The interior is cosy, relaxed and fun. Old furnitures and candles, nice place for a drink too. They also have a big terrace, great place to observe life in Schlesisches Tor.
Okay, this next one is not a plate, it is a tower. And it’s one of the most expensive breakfasts I’ve had (22,50e for two persons) in Berlin, but yes, it’s divine. I’m talking about Anna Blume (Kollowitzstraße 83) in Prenzlauer Berg. It’s really popular, but if you don’t mind a bit of queuing and hassle, go and get it.
If your budget is running low, visit Zebrano (Sonntagstraße 8) in Friedrichshain. Great breakfast plate for two (includes 2 glasses of sparkling wine/juice) costs 10,90e and you can get it ’till 11pm. Yes, pm. Nice sofas, good music and atmosphere.
And right now many people are raving about breakfast and lunch in House of Small Wonder, let me know if it’s as good as they say!
Middle Eastern kitchen never fails in Berlin. You can find a Döner Imbiss in every corner, go and try. If you are a vegetarian, take the vegetarian döner with falafel or halloumi cheese. Or vöner. In Vöner (Boxhagener Straße 56), you can get great vegetarian fast food. Their veggie döner is made with big chunks of seitan, grilled bread, fresh salad and herbs, finished with sauce of your choice (yogurt, peanut, chili or tahini).
Other excellent, more authentic, Middle Eastern food you can find for example in Baraka (big Moroccan-Egyptian restaurant in Kreuzberg. Try the delicious sharing plates, but notice, no alcohol served here), Almayas (Turkish fast food in Friedrichshain, great meze plates) and Ali Baba (Lebanese kitchen, also in Friedrichshain).
Ali Baba (Krossener Straße 17) is my favourite. This tiny restaurant serves fresh made falafels, great hummus and other mezes at a good price (falafel in bread is 3e and it’s huge).
Biggest food trend in Berlin at the moment is the Korean kitchen. Where there is kimchi, there are people. And there are many places to find great Korean food. The best one I’ve had so far has been in YumYum Berlin (Alte Schönhauser Straße 6).
All the dishes I’ve tasted there have been rich with flavours, well made with good, fresh incredients and tasted just like the ones I’ve had in Korea. Try fried korean dumplings, mandu, as starters. Kimchi stew, jjigae, is also great.
YumYum is trendy, if you want to visit a more traditional Korean restaurant, reserve a table for dinner at Madang (Gneisenaustraße 8).
And one more great place to have lunch is Markthalle Neun (Eisenbahnstraße 42/43), the market hall in Kreuzberg. You can find all kinds of great food here (also on Thursday evenings when Street Food Thursday takes over), but if you like fish, try anything from Glut & Späne, you won’t be disappointed.
Hopefully, because the city is filled with excellent Vietnamese restaurants. If you are in Prenzlauer Berg, Si An (Rykestraße 36) is the place to find. If you are in Mitte, head into Chay Viet (Brunnenstraße 164). In Friedrichshain, Chay Village (Niederbarnimstraße 10) will make you happy.
In all these restaurants (which all are great for vegetarians and vegans), I’ve had so good meals, that I’ve been humming with pleasure: pho soups, coconut soups, sommer rolls, vietnamese pancakes, rice dishes, noodles, wontons, cocktails, tees.
If you fancy pizza, Il Ritrovo (Gabriel-Max-Straße 2) is the best choice. These inked Italian punks also own two smaller restaurants I Due Forni (Schönhauser Allee 12) in Prenzlauer Berg and Il Casorale (Grimmstrasse 30) in Kreuzberg.
All of them are full, loud and are accused time to time of bad service. But wine is good and, mamma mia, the pizzas are great. The crust is perfectly crisp on the edges, melted cheese stretches beautifully, nice choice of toppings and the pizzas are so big they pour over the plates. Watch out that chili-oil, it’s feisty.
In Berlin you can eat such a great meal for 10 euros, that I haven’t done much fine dining here. But there is one place where I go, when I want something special.
Restaurant Heising (Rankestraße 32) is really one of a kind. It is like a time leap to the beginning of the 20th century. The atmosphere, music, fireplace, tableware, roses, elegant dishes and the service. Mr. and Mrs. Heising run the place themselves. Or the word “run” doesn’t actually fit here. Everything takes time, but once you’re in there, you forget the world outside. And the time.
And then there is Neue Heimat (Revaler Straße 99), the Street Food Heaven. They have everything from schnitzels to kimchi tacos, from ribs to vegan burgers and bibimbap to oysters and pulled pork sliders. Every Sunday from 12 to 22 (sometimes on Fridays and Saturdays too, check the link).
Two old brickyards filled with street food stands and food trucks, candles, dj’s, live jazz, super cosy atmosphere. You just want to stay there the whole day, hang out and taste everything. Though it could get on your wallet. Dishes here cost 5-9 euros. They are rather small, some are good, some are okay. The set is different every week. If you see arepas, taste them!
Still want some more restaurant tips? Well, here’s my Good Food in Berlin part II.