If you are thinking of going to Berlin you must read this article on the best eats in Berlin!
While cities like Paris and San Sebastian may be better known for their food, Berlin (perhaps surprisingly) is also home to a wide array of diverse, delicious cuisine. Due to the city’s large immigrant population and cosmopolitan character, you can find anything from traditional German fare to authentic Turkish, Vietnamese, and Italian cuisine here, much of which is affordable even for budget travelers. Since moving to Berlin earlier this year, I’ve loved exploring the city’s food scene and trying out as many restaurants, cafes, and markets as I can. If you’re planning a visit to this special city, here are my suggestions for the best eats in Berlin!
We are starting off the best eats in Berlin with a staple of the city! If you’ve never had currywurst before, you’re in for a treat. This German snack food staple is said to have been invented in Berlin in 1949 and no trip to Germany is complete without it, in my opinion! The dish is simple–bratwurst covered in curry ketchup and sprinkled with curry powder–and although it sounds like a questionable combination, you might be surprised by how good it is. My favorite place to go when I’m in the mood for this fast food bite is Curry Mitte, conveniently located right next to the Rosenthaler Platz U-Bahn station. Served with perfectly cooked fries and a drink of your choice (including beer!), a hearty serving will only set you back 5.40€. It’s also open late, so it’s the perfect place to end your night after enjoying Berlin’s legendary nightlife.
Located in the middle of bustling Sonnenallee in the neighborhood of Neukölln, Azzam is one of the best places you can go for Middle Eastern food in Berlin. A great stop for cheap but filling fare, Azzam has a wide range of dishes and the portions are huge, so consider sharing! Order at the counter while the rest of your party hunts for a table, and enjoy the complimentary tea while you wait for your food (though you won’t have to wait long). The gemüse teller (a vegetarian plate comprised of falafel, halloumi, eggplant, pickles, and other goodies) and the foul (a rich and creamy bean dish to be eaten with pita) are my usual go-to’s, but you really can’t go wrong here–everything I’ve tried has been amazing. If you’re feeling adventurous, grab an Ayran to drink–this salty yogurt drink is particularly good for when you inevitably eat a bit too much of their amazing hot sauce and need some relief from the spice.
For unpretentious but delicious homestyle German food, Hackethal’s Gaststäte is the place to go. This cozy restaurant is located on a quiet, residential street that feels a bit like it’s in the middle of nowhere, but once you arrive it’s easy to get comfortable in their small, well-decorated dining room. If you can, call ahead to make a reservation, since the tables can fill up quickly. (It’s worth swinging by even if you don’t call ahead, though, since they might be able to seat you at the bar.) Although the menu is small, you’ll have a hard time choosing among their rotating list of specials like schnitzel and stewed beef with potato dumplings and sauerkraut. The staff is friendly and happy to answer questions or make recommendations about the food and drinks. Be sure to save room for dessert, too!
I would be remiss to list the best restaurants in Berlin without including at least one spot for Turkish food, as Turkish people form the largest minority group in the city. You can find döner kebab on practically every corner, but I recommend hitting up Aldimashqi in vibrant Neukölln, an unassuming spot for awesome Turkish dishes. Although the ambiance and service may leave something to be desired, the food is definitely worth it–try the chicken schwarma, the kebab plate, or the baba ganoush and you’ll know what I mean. And after your meal, you’ll have money left over to grab a drink next door at the cozy Vater Bar or any of the numerous cool bars sprinkled throughout this hip neighborhood.
If you and your travel companions are having trouble coming to a consensus on what to eat, head to Markthalle Neun. This grand food hall, which dates back to 1891, has a wide range of stands to choose from, so there’s something there for everyone. Wander through the vendors and you’re guaranteed to find at least one thing that piques your interest, from barbeque to handmade pasta to sushi burgers and kimchi poutine. If you happen to be in town on Thursday, stop by to experience “Street Food Thursday” for an even wider range of delicious bites. The hall also features a brewery, a few shops with kitchen supplies and knickknacks, a flower shop, and several spots to grab something sweet to round out your meal.
Berlin is also home to a large Vietnamese population–in fact, it’s the city’s largest Southeast Asian community. (Many Vietnamese people came to East Berlin during the 1980s as contract workers because of a deal between East Germany and communist Vietnam.) Naturally, then, in Berlin great Vietnamese restaurants abound. District Mot in the Mitte neighborhood is a favorite for both its vibrant, charmingly kitschy decor and excellent street food inspired dishes. Pull up a stool outside if the weather’s nice and enjoy their delicious noodle dishes, spring rolls, and pork bun style burgers. You’re sure to leave with a full belly and a few snapshots for your Instagram to boot.
If you had one too many German brews last night and are looking for a good hangover cure (no judgment), Factory Girl is the perfect place to get your groove back. This bright, plant-filled cafe offers a range of delicious egg plates and other breakfast dishes like muesli, plus great coffee and even mimosas if you need a little hair of the dog.
The food and decor will make you feel as though you could just as easily be in Los Angeles or Sydney, but there’s something about this place that’s still unmistakably Berlin. After brunch, take a stroll through this charming neighborhood to peruse the numerous shops and art galleries nearby, or indulge in another latte at the renowned The Barn just around the corner.
This list is by no means exhaustive, as there are still tons of wonderful restaurants that I haven’t had the chance to visit yet, but these suggestions are a good starting point if you’re planning a visit to Berlin and want to know some of the best eats in Berlin. I hope you get a chance to try some of them and experience Berlin’s impressive food scene for yourself.
If you’ve been to the city before, what are the places where you’ve found the best eats in Berlin? Or if you’ve yet to visit, what are you most looking forward to trying? Let us know in the comments!
Best eats in Berlin was written by Wellesley Boboc. Wellesley is our wonderful content editor who happens to be living in Berlin. We are very fortunate that she is willing to write these wonderful pieces for us on a city we adore! Afterall, no better advice than from a local!
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