We ate very well in Berlin, thanks to the terrific advice from this Board, (with a special shout-out to linguafood).
Weinbar Rutz. Not a sausage maven, I loved the depth & complexity of my husband’s Sausage Neokolln and enjoyed my Palatinate liver pate with lovely pickles and fabulous bread (pretty sure from the incomparable Solana Brot und Ol). My Oldenberg duck was maybe the best duck I’ve ever eaten. My husband’s crispy cod with wild garlic sauce, less transcendent—fish bland, not crispy--though the sauce was brilliant (the kitchen shared by the Michelin-starred Restaurant and the informal Weinbar). I liked that dishes came in two sizes, small or large.
Renger Patzsch. Beautiful space, lovely service. My husband was equivocal about his wild boar salami, which I thought nicely done, but he really liked his lamb stew. I loved my Beelitz white asparagus w/ hollandaise, and pike perch fillet. For dessert, a delicious (massive) flambe tarte with apples. When I was up at 4 AM with jetlag, I enjoyed the leftovers.
Katz Orange. My husband liked his spring garlic soup. We both adored the tender (w/ fabulous, crunchy ends), succulent slow roasted pork (missed the fact from prior posts that it’s a dish for two). Sides: to-die-for fries cooked in goose fat and smoked pureed swede (a great complement). We resolved not to eat again for days.
Hasir in Kreutzberg (supposedly the best of the several branches) Brilliant Turkish lunch. My acili terbiveli lamb shish kebab was remarkably tender, delectably seasoned, the roasted, smokey jalapeno pepper a fabulous accompaniment. I can’t think when lamb has tasted so good. Salad and bread meh. Turkish tea just the ticket on a chilly, rainy afternoon.
KaDaWe: lovely (and massive—more than enough for two) slice of sponge w/ custard filling and almonds on the top.
Jolesch—My husband’s trout appetizer grew on him. We shared mains; and we both loved (underscored) the vast, beautifully breaded/fried schnitzel. Goulash another story: we both found the dumplings tough and flavorless (an off night?—these get consistent praise here)—my husband liked the meat, which I thought dry and salty. Sachertorte: dry. Service, distracted & perfunctory (our long reserved table, next to the WC).
Mustafa’s Gemuse Kebap, outside the Merhingdamm station. Standing in the hour-long line, I had plenty of time to observe and reflect on the fact that I was surely the only one there old enough to remember JFK’s “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech. The wait and rave reviews made me want to love my “Hanschen doner mit gemeuse (mit alles).” But I didn’t. Not the raggedy texture, not the over-salty chicken, not the sauces, at once sharp and flat.
But all in all: a great city and some great meals! Again, thanks.