It is no secret that Berlin is one of my favourite cities in the world! It is vibrant, hip, contemporary yet historical; there is so much life, so many different kinds of people, the mentality of progression and forward thinking is everywhere and I just LOVE it! As I try to spend as much time there as I can, I am starting to get to know Berlin really well – I feel like with each trip I make, I discover some new corner of the city, scout out new secret dives, and I have decided to share all of these with you here on my blog! When I thought about how to present this post, it became clear that there was too much to say, too many places to recommend, in just one blog post, so I have made it into a trilogy: restaurants, drinks and attractions. These are basically the things that I love to do in Berlin and each of my posts will take you a little away from the main touristy places; I will showcase some absolutely amazing spots in Berlin that you might not find in your guide book and I hope that these ideas will be helpful to you if you are thinking of making a trip to this wonderful city!
For this first post, I have collected together some impressions of a few of my favourite restaurants in the city. There is an incredible culinary scene in Berlin, and whether you fancy Japanese, Chinese, Thai, American, Mexican or just a typical Döner Kebab, there is definitely going to be something for everyone. Here are a few of my favourite eats.
1. Silo Coffee
Starting with the most important meal of the day, breakfast! Silo Coffee is, hands down, my all time favourite place for breakfast/brunch… ever? The food is absolutely delicious and all locally sourced, the only problem is that it is so difficult to choose what to get – everything sounds so good! I can personally recommend ‘The Silo’ – two organic poached eggs on beautiful sironi toast, with herby avocado, bacon and marinated feta… are you drooling yet?! Silo also offers smaller options if you are not so hungry, such as granola or toasties, and gluten free and vegan options are available too. And I just had to add a mention about the quality of the coffee here; being a total coffee addict I take my coffee very seriously and Silo Coffee is as good as it gets.
It is also worth knowing that Silo Coffee is a small joint with a limited number of tables. This is something that I find gives it a very special, intimate atmosphere and a real ‘homey’ and friendly feel. You cannot reserve tables so be prepared to wait a few minutes (you will need this time to choose what to order anyway) but rest assured you are in the right place – Silo Coffee is a total MUST for breakfast time in Berlin.
Tips: cash only, outdoor seating perfect in the summer, open every day (Sundays too).
Check out Silo Coffee here!
2. Lon-Men’s Noodle House
This tiny restaurant may not look the most promising from the outside, but trust me that it is an incredibly special little eatery. It is cheap and cheerful, truly authentic Taiwanese cuisine but they also have some amazing speciality Thai dishes too, with lots of seafood options, ox and even pig’s ear – yes we did try it and it was pretty good! I have to recommend the dim sum, which was definitely some of the best that I have ever had, and the noodle dishes were also fantastic.
As it is such a small place, you may find yourself sharing tables with strangers, but there is something really lovely about this. When we were there, we were seated next to an old German couple, who told us that this was their favourite place to eat in Berlin and they had been coming there for years. There is no better testament to how good this restaurant is than that!
Tips: time your visit a little later in the evening to avoid the rush hour (around 9pm is perfect), closed Wednesdays.
3. Mrs Robinson’s
If you are looking to spend a little more and try somewhere REALLY cool and trendy for dinner, Mrs Robinson’s is the one! It is chic and modern, in it’s decor, atmosphere and food, and beware that it is so popular right now that you even get a certain allotted time for your meal, after which you will be asked to leave. Reservations are a MUST.
The food here is Asian style and simply amazing. Upon arrival you will receive an amuse-bouche of fried nori, and honestly it is so good that if that had been the entire meal I would have gone home extremely happy! The menu offers a selection of amazing starters, including crispy tofu which is an absolute star of the menu, and a variety buns for your main course which are great for sharing. I recommend, for a party of two, getting a couple of starters (definitely go for the tofu and perhaps the beef carpaccio) and a couple of portions of buns (the pork and chicken were great). You can always order more if needed, but remember to save room for dessert because you seriously don’t want to miss out there! I also hugely recommend trying one of their cocktails – I guarantee you will not have tasted anything like these drinks ever and they are SO worth it.
Tips: RESERVE, cash only, closed Sundays and Mondays.
Check out Mrs Robinson’s here!
4. Markthalle Neun Breakfast Market
Although more of an event and not strictly a restaurant, I had to include this as, if you are a foodie like me, you will absolutely love it! The breakfast market at Markthalle Neun is a huge food market that happens once per month, on the 3rd Sunday of every month, where little food trucks of all different nationalities and cuisines gather in a huge market space and sell their own culinary delicacies. You will find Japanese sushi, American apple pie, Mexican tacos, New Zealand pies, Swedish pickled salmon sandwiches and many, many more. If you happen to time your visit in Berlin to coordinate with the Markthalle, you must give it a visit!
It is extremely fun to walk around, look at everything that is on offer, and is even a great social event too. There are also little kitchen shops, selling cooking gadgets, nice crockery and art work, as well as lots of little bars where you can pick up a coffee or a bloody mary. Altogether is is a great way to spend a morning or afternoon and there is plenty of great food to be eaten.
Tips: fighting for seats at the picnic benches can be tricky so be on your guard, cash only, open 10-5pm every 3rd Sunday of the month, there are lots of other foodie events going on at Markthalle Neun that are worth looking into!
Check out Markthalle Neun here!
Papilles is a gorgeous little French restaurant located in an up-and-coming part of Berlin. Like a few of the places I have mentioned here, it is very small, with a very personal and unique atmosphere, so reservations would be a good idea. I noticed on my visit that the other customers seemed to be regulars here – lots of them were friends or well known with the waitresses, and this gave a really friendly and close vibe.
The chef at this restaurant is known for doing whatever he likes with his food, and as such there is no official menu here! Our waitress explained to us what was on offer but that, while we could order the lamb or the burger, she couldn’t really tell us what any dish came with or how it would be presented as this was totally up to how the chef was feeling that day. What a unique idea! I was already sold after I heard this, but the food was so delicious that it spoke for itself. This is definitely a restaurant that I can’t wait to visit again, and I know that every time I go there will be completely different.
Tips: cash only, closed Wednesdays.
Check out Papilles here!