Berlin, a City Tasting Tour
With all due respect for Harrods and its immense department dedicated to gastronomic delights, foodies will think they have died and gone to heaven when walking onto the sixth floor of Berlin’s KaDeWe.
The second-largest food market in the world, after Takashimaya in Tokyo. Since 1907, the 60 thousand square meter space (the size of two soccer fields), has been catering to the needs of epicureans and curious eaters, while currently employing 110 cooks and 40 bakers and pastry chefs who furnish the dozens of counters and small restaurants held within.
The chronically indecisive may have trouble deciding among the 1,800 different kinds of cheeses, the 1,500 jars of sauces and condiments and the 400 types of bread. Ah yes, Berlin is a bread-lovers paradise with variants in sesame, sunflower seeds, walnuts and anise: it’s worth a trip here just for the bread alone. The seventh floor, added in the early ‘90s, features a winter garden with a seating capacity for 1,000 and a restaurant with a view of the Wittenbergplatz.
If you happen to be in Berlin on a Saturday, don’t miss the food market Wochenmarkt Winterfeldtplatz , with its myriad food stalls where you can taste bread, meat, vegetables and cheeses. There’s a wide variety of ethnic and organic products as well.
For those who want to spend a bit less (about 3€), try Berlin’s most popular street food, currywurst: a sausage served sliced, sans bans, and smothered in curry and sauce. So beloved is this dish, that Berliners have even dedicated an entire museum to it, which is best visited on a full stomach.
One of the best versions can be eaten at Wittys , which serves organic meat alongside crispy French fries and mayonnaise . Another popular currywurst kiosk is Mustafas Gemüse Kebab, where the lines are long and the Döners are irresistible .
A bit off the touristic track is Rogacki, which serves and sells fresh and smoked fish—both local variants as well as eel. Established in 1932 in Wilmersdorferstraße, you’ll be greeted by the scent of smoky herbs as products are smoked on site. You can eat right there at the counter, and will surely be able to satisfy your hunger for around 10 euro. Also worth trying: their salads, deli goods, game meats and chicken.
Inside the Brandenburger Hof, a Luxury Boutique Hotel and among Germany’s finest, is the exquisite, Michelin-starred restaurant Die Quadriga whose young chef Sebastian Völz, uses local, organic products—from beef to eel—and transforms them into masterpieces. Another hotel boasting a two Michelin-starred establishment is the Regent and its restaurant Fischer Fritz run by chef Christian Lhose, perfect for fish lovers and those who prefer an elegant French touch to their meals.
The brisk air of Berlin might incite a craving for chocolate. Should this occur, head straight for the legendary Fassbender & Rausch Chocolatiers. Established in 1863, since the mid ‘90s it also features a restaurant on the first floor.
In a traditional, Central European atmosphere, Melanie serves chocolate truffles in unusual variants like curry, horseradish, garlic, green tea and asparagus. Intrigued? There are at least 70 different flavors of chocolate to choose from.