Mini Retirement Project

Tips for Foodies in Berlin

There have been some great culinary experiences during our 2 weeks stay in Berlin. My friends were right when they said that Berlin has a lot to offer other than currywurst. For such big European city like Berlin, the cost of living and food here are actually quite reasonable, compared to it’s other neighbouring cities i.e. Munich or Vienna.

Also, since Berlin is now home to so many expats and immigrants, it is not surprising at all to find so many different variety of cuisines within its city. You’ll find that majority of these are from Kruezberg neighbourhood, which was where we lived. Due to the huge number of expats and mulit-nationalities living here, we find ourselves stumbling into some unique and charming little street food eateries here. These were some of our favourite Berlin foodie finds  in random order.

  1. Currywurst

Apparently, Berlin actually invented the currywurst, which as the name goes, basically consists of sausages with curry ketchup sauce serve usually with a bread roll. We’ve had only a few tries at sausages because I’m not a big fan of them. The best one that I had was at the Alexanderplatz Christmasmrkt. Crispy sausage skin, with a dash of curry powder into the pipping hot ketchup sauce — really made my day on a cold winter morning. I’ve also heard plenty of rave about Curry36 — which I’ve yet to try.

Currywurst

Currywurst in Berlin

2. Falafel in Berlin

We stumbled upon this cozy little Middle Eastern cafe randomly while walking around our U-bahn station. We spent the next 3 days having our lunch here sampling their delicious doner kebabs. So far, everything we tried from falafel to haloumi to their signature chicken schawarma, tasted delicious. If you happen to stop by Kruezberg, give them a try! (Located directly opposite Gorlitzer Banhoff station)

Shopfront Falafel in Berlin

Shopfront Falafel in Berlin

Falafel and haloumi doner in berlin

Falafel and haloumi doner, it’s so good.

Chicken schawarma on a plate

Chicken schawarma on a plate

3. Gel Gör

One word, Künefe. Gel Gör is a famous Turkish cafe recommended by many websites for their various baguette sandwiches. We did try them, but after Falafel in Berlin, everything else was just so-so. What we enjoyed tremendously was the Künefe. It’s a turkish dessert, a mild tasting cheese served with filo pastry and sugar syrup baked until crisp on top, and oozing underneath. To this day, I’m still salivating over that dish — and i’m not even a big sweet tooth person! It’s just perfect, not too sweet and with enough texture from the crusty pastry. (Located along Kottbutsser Damm, just google it- it’s famous)

Gel Gör shopfront

Gel Gör shopfront

One big tray of freshly baked Baklava goodies

One big tray of freshly baked Baklava goodies

 

Künefe served with Turkish tea

Künefe served with Turkish tea

signature Turkish lamb baguettes

Their signature Turkish lamb baguettes

 

4. Pic Nic 34

Just when we were about to get bored with eating Turkish food, we stumbled upon a nearby Italian sandwich shop serving simple Italian sandwich fare and the occassional pasta (whenever the chef is in the mood). I’ve never had Italian sandwich served to me like this, so.. ala-carte and fuss free. It’s exactly like ordering a Subway, but from an Italian deli instead. You get to choose your type of bread, cheese, meat and pickled vege option. My personal favourite was the slightly pricier option of Porchetta sandwich — chef’s recommendation. True to the chef’s own words, the combination of the bread, meat and cheese was ‘to die for’. On our second last day in Berlin, we got to try his pasta as well. Again a very simple, traditional fare with only two ingredients — cured pork cheeks and chickpeas, yet somehow it became one of the most satisfyingly delicious pasta I’ve ever had. Just proves that simple dishes created with fresh & quality produce are the best. It’s a good thing we don’t live there anymore, because I can totally foresee ourselves pigging out at the shop every other day. (Located on Wienerstrasse 34, Kruezberg)

PicNic34 shopfront berlin

PicNic34 shopfront

Prochetta sandwich at PicNic34

Prochetta sandwich at PicNic34

Cured pork cheeks and chickpea pasta at PicNic34

Cured pork cheeks and chickpea pasta at PicNic34

5. Street Food Market at Markthalle Neun

Lucky for us, we found out about the weekly Thursday night streetfood market at Markethalle Neun in Kreuzberg. There were plenty of stalls offering non traditional German fares, everything from American sliders to Thai mango salads. Most of these stalls are running their own food truck business or have a store opened nearby. Every Thursday without fail, the Markthalle is packed with food producers, chefs, and foodies eagerly trying out the different food on offer. Due to our stomach limitations, we did not have the capacity to try everything on offer so we do our best with what we’ve got. Next time, Berlin…

Markethalle Neun decorated in beautiful Christmas decors

Markethalle Neun decorated in beautiful Christmas decors

Taiwanese pork belly ‘bao’ sandwich

Taiwanese pork belly ‘bao’ sandwich

German Kasspatzen

German Kasspatzen. A type of pasta like dish served with cheese. Think German Mac & Cheese

Thai mango salad with crsipy fish

Thai mango salad with crsipy fish

Italian coconut dessert cake

Italian coconut dessert cake

Italian bakery goodness on display, baked fresh inside the hall

Italian bakery goodness on display, baked fresh inside the hall

6. Turkish Market

Have I mentioned we love food markets? We found another market to visit near our place again, (we love Kreuzberg!) this time was the Turkish market along Maybachufer, Neukoln. Found a delicious stall selling Gozleme and Cheese Cigars to enjoy before we started our day. Located along Maybachufer next to the river, this market is held every Tuesday and Friday.

Turkish market in Berlin

Food stall selling varieties of local Turkish dishes

Best selling Gozleme stall. Unlike the others, these are freshly made to order here.

Gozleme (the flat one) with feta and spinach, and a cheese cigar.

Honestly, we didn’t know how good we had it in Berlin until we left the city. From time to time, we are still reminiscing some of the goodies we encountered there and we miss the cheaper price tags too! We didn’t manage to do too many sit downs / fine dinings in Berlin because there’s always a food event happening around the corner due to the Christmas season. No doubt, there’s definitely more to try in Berlin. We will see you in Summer next year Berlin…

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Debbie Lim

Debbie Lim

Born and bred in Penang, Malaysia, Debbie has spent the last decade in her second home Brisbane, Australia as an engineer. Her professional experiences have taught her how to plan efficiently and manage effectively in the various aspects of her travels. She is an experienced minimalist traveler who believes in keeping it simple yet fun. You will not find a fixed itinerary sheet on her and definitely no alarm clocks or wake up calls when she travels. After spending most of her adulthood in a highly analytical and tightly regulated environment, she currently revels in a a good adventure and spontaneity when least expected.

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