It’s an exciting time to eat out in Berlin right now. The German capital boasts a dazzling array of ambitious new restaurant projects as international influences couple up with a culinary scene that’s ripe and ready for innovation. Here are the established chefs and new projects making waves across the city.
When the restaurant group behind Berlin’s iconic Grill Royal and Pauly Saal paired up with internationally acclaimed artist, Rirkrit Tiravanija, and the young Thai chef, Dalad Kambhu, the result was as high as we’d hoped. Kin Dee is an effortless interweaving of authentic flavours, beautiful design, and unique taste profiles and although Kambhu’s eight-course menu is unabashedly rooted in Thai traditions; locally-sourced produce is used to enhance a dish’s quality wherever it makes sense. Miang Kham, for example, uses endive leaves as a replacement for the traditional betel leaves. This fusion of German ingredients and Thai flavours gives Kin Dee a taste-of-place like no other.
Lützowstraße 81 10785 Berlin
+49 (0) 030 2155294Website
The most anticipated opening of 2017 was this 12-seat counter restaurant where prodigal 23-year-old chef, Dylan Watson Brawn (who completed stages at Noma, Eleven Madison Park and Ryugin) serves a stunningly simplistic, produce-focused, 25+ courses. Brawn’s menu is a hymn to the landscape of seasonality with much of it determined minutes before service depending on what’s been available throughout the week. His ritualistic preparation and paired-back presentation are the antidote to excess, as ingredients including Mangaliza pork from Austria and locally-sourced eel speak for themselves without the distraction of embellishment. Most arresting at this unconventional restaurant is Brawn’s unnervingly quiet confidence - it’s the sort which predetermines greatness.
An epidemic of new restaurant openings throughout the last year has ensured the Berlin food scene is finally the sum of its international and metropolitan parts. To the Bone is so new the paintwork has barely dried; but an Italian steakhouse in a sleek venue on Mitte’s Torstrasse is the exact sort of success story Berlin is now ready to foster. Alongside prime cuts of beef from revered producer Dario Cecchini, diners can also feast on snacks such as deep-fried mozzarella sandwiches, stand-out mains including Quail, chanterelles and polenta and a promising wine list.
To the Bone
Torstraße 96 10119 Berlin
+49 (0) 030 40753440Website
Head chef, Björn Swanson, worked in some of Berlin’s leading kitchens including Facil and Frischers Fritz before opening Golvet on Potsdamer Strasse in the summer of 2017. Every second of his previous experience is visible in Golvet’s richly inventive fusion menu. The laid-back dining room offers stunning 360 degree views across Berlin which are enjoyed alongside dishes such as Burrata, peach & pulled rabbit and Pigeon, fava beans & chanterelles.
Potsdamer Straße 58 10785 Berlin
+49 (0) 30 89064222Website
Although technically not new, CODA’s sensational ‘dessert-bar’ menu was made even better recently with different set courses available at different times in the evening. Don’t let the word ‘dessert’ fool you though, Rene Frank’s kitchen doesn’t permit the use of any added sugar - instead, he and his team are alchemists of unconventional dessert ingredients. An impeccable plate of yellow tomato ice cream, chickpea foam & five spice crumble is emblematic of Frank’s complex ingenuity but who would expect anything less from the former head patisserie chef at three-star Restaurant La Vie.CODA is easily Berlin’s most underrated restaurant.
Friedelstraße 47 12047 Berlin
+49 (0) 30 91496396Website
Staff shortages are hitting the hospitality sector hard, prompting some restaurants to look outside the industry to train those without restaurant experience for life in the kitchen. Andrew Friedman finds out more.