Insider Tips: Eating Out in Berlin

Am Hackeschen Markt | At Hackescher Markt
© visitBerlin, Foto: Wolfgang Scholvien

If you know where to look, Berlin can be a foodie’s dream. With options ranging from Michelin starred restaurants (of which there are now 25) to food trucks, food aficionados are spoiled for choice and there is something available for people of every budget. However, we know it can get a bit overwhelming so here are a few tips and tricks for eating out in Berlin.

Don’t Forget Your Euros

A good tip for all those seeking the culinary delights of Germany’s capital: be sure to bring enough cash. While some restaurants do accept debit cards (EC Karte) and credit cards, a majority of restaurants and cafes will only accept cash. So save yourself a frantic search for the nearest ATM, and make sure you always have enough in your wallet to cover the cost of your meal.

On the Weekend, Make a Reservation

While there are hundreds of eateries to choose from throughout the city, one thing remains certain: on the weekends it can be tough to find a place that isn’t filled to the brim. At trendy restaurants and local favorites on Friday and Saturday evenings it can be a struggle to find somewhere with a free table, particularly if your party is larger than two or three people. Brunch on Saturday and particularly Sunday mornings is also a peak time. So look up where you want to go a few days ahead and see if the restaurant accepts reservations, it will save you from disappointment and hunger.

Strandbar Mitte
© visitBerlin, Foto: Philip Koschel

Get to Know Your District’s Flavor

Each district in Berlin has its own unique culinary highlights, and it’s a great idea to spend some time figuring out what makes your own area special. Did you know that every Sunday at the Kulturbrauerei in Prenzlauer Berg that there is a street food market with delicacies served from around the world? Or that in the summer a small park in the quiet district of Wilmersdorf is transformed into the Thai Park, where hundreds of people gather every weekend to eat delicious, fresh south-east Asian food? These types of events are common throughout Berlin.

It is important to note that while Mitte may be the more expensive and trendy area of the city, that sometimes the most highly rated restaurants of the city are to be found in unexpected places. Such as Horvath, a restaurant with two Michelin stars which can be found on a quiet street in Kreuzberg, several blocks removed from the busy and popular Skalitzer Straße.

Get to Know Berlin’s Culinary Specialties

Konnopke’s Currywurst, Berlin-Prenzlauer Berg
© visitBerlin, Foto: Philip Koschel

While over the past couple decades Berlin has grown into a diverse city with a wide variety of culinary options, it is important not to overlook the specialties which originated in the city. The three most famous regional foods of Berlin are currywurst (bratwurst with curry ketchup), ketwurst (bockwurst in a roll dipped in ketchup), and döner kebab (beef, veal, or chicken with salad and sauces in pita bread). These fast foods can be found at kiosks throughout the city with varying quality. It can be quite enjoyable trying out different locations, but there are also several famous locations that are worth checking out even though there are often lines. The general consensus states that for döner kebab, the place to go is Mustafa’s in Kreuzberg and it has the lines to prove it. For the East Berlin specialty of ketwurst, the place to go is Alain Snack in Prenzlauer Berg, one of the few places where it is still easy to find. Finally, the discussion on the best currywurst in town can get rather heated with most in the city divided between the West Berlin favorite Curry 36 with branches Charlottenburg and Kreuzberg and the East Berlin landmark Konnopke’s Imbiss in Prenzlauer Berg which first introduced the dish to capital of the GDR in 1960. Which is the better currywurst? Well, it’s hard to say, but it certainly isn’t a trial trying out both to find out.

Finishing Up…

With thousands of restaurants in Berlin and more popping up every day, there is certainly something for everyone. For a list of different restaurants around the city, be sure to check out AngloINFO’s directory of restaurants, bars, and more around Berlin.