Typical German Food?

I have always liked to try food from different countries, and I also think that food is one of the biggest part of a trip, when being out travelling. Last year, when I lived in Spain for example, tapas is one the things I remember the most; I remember which restaurant that served the best, which tapas that became my favorites, who I used to have my tapas with…
Since I hadn’t been to Germany and had no idea about German food culture, I became curious, and asked  my two friends what typical German food is. None of them seemed to be any big fan of German food, and instead they told me that they normally eat pizza, pasta or Asian food. When I think about it, I never eat ‘Swedish food’ either, however; got a bit curious about what I had to expect.

Yesterday, my Italian friend Alessiya arrived to Berlin, and at 3 p.m. I went to meet her up outside of her hotel. The hotel is located in Wilmersdorf – a part of Berlin I hadn’t been to before, and since one of my colleagues at work is living there at the moment, I thought it would be nice to see what it was like. Since we had planned to be back at the hotel pretty early, we decided to just walk around in the neighborhood, and I must admit that it isn’t really an area I planned to come back to. Wilmersdorf is quite far away from Prenzlauer Berg and wasn’t at all as charming as the rest of the parts in Berlin. The best “thing” we discovered was the shopping mall ‘Wilmersdorfer Arcaden‘ where we bought some nice Gelato.

Later that evening, Alessiya and I joined her mother and some of her friends to a restaurant. The restaurant was located in the area, and in order to get to it we had to walk about 3 km. Even though it was freezing (it was 7 degrees yesterday) I enjoyed this walk a lot; We started at Adenauerplatz, and then we followed the big shopping street Kurfürstendamm (more commonly known as: Ku’Damm), all the way to Uhlandstraße. Walking on that street felt a bit like walking in a museum; it was full o exclusive shops and buildings, and I must admit that I find it really fascinating with all the contrasts here in the city. I often tell people how surprised I am of Berlin, that people never dress up, and then you go to this part of Berlin, and all girls wear high heels, skirts and exclusive designer clothes.

In the end of Kurfürstendamm was the restaurant where we had booked a table, and where we were supposed to have a ‘typical German dinner’: Alter Biersalon Berlin. The restaurant is famous for being one of the oldest beer saloons in the whole city, and since we were quite a big company we had already ordered what to eat. We were all having a three course meal, and well… maybe my friends were right when they told me that German food really isn’t anything special.

As a starter we had: Brandenburger Kartoffelsuppe mit Wiener Würstuchen und Brot. This was allright, but quite boring.
As main course we had: Rostbratwurst mit Sauerkraut und Kartoffelpüre, which was a rather grey dish and kind of tasteless.
As a desert we had something like “Dessertkirschen” – which was a bit like eating jam in a bowl.

To be honest, the food wasn’t that bad, it really wasn’t, and it was fun to try something typically German. But, I I would never pay to get it served again.

Normally I really enjoy modifying pictures, but when it comes to this (huge) portion of sausage and mashed potatoes I think I must keep it to show exactly how grey it looked when it arrived to the table. 

To sum it all up, I’m glad that there are so many different restaurants here in Berlin, and that it is possible to eat food from all around the world, so I don’t have to eat “totally German” the whole time.


13 thoughts on “Typical German Food?

  1. We have some awesome German restaurants in Sydney and I’ve always thought signature German food was schnitzel?
    Loving your blog! :)

    • Haha, yes I actually think it is, so I guess I will need to try that next time. But otherwise, Döner is really big here in Berlin, and I don’t complain; it is cheap and so good!

  2. Berlin is a great place to sample foods from around the world, and all the Berliners cook German food at home, so they typically don’t want it when they go out. I don’t think I had a traditional German meal the entire time I was in Berlin, and that’s okay by me!

    • I totally agree – it is just that when you move to a new country you feel like you “have to” try some national dishes… But I’m totally fine with eating Asian, American, etc. too

  3. If you feel like cooking some German food, check out my blog, morethanbratwurst.com. I have committed to fight the preconceptions people have when it comes to German food. Not sure if I will be successful, though :-)

  4. I suppose the “jam in the bowl” you had for dessert was Rote Grütze, a fruit pudding of different berries, red currants and cherries that is absolutely delicious when properly prepared. Your post made me cringe because it fits that ugly stereotype so well. I hope you will give German food from a different kitchen (your own?) another try while you are in Berlin.

  5. Pingback: The best Wienerschnitzel in Berlin ? | The life of a Swedish girl Living in Berlin

  6. Gosh, this must have been a really terrible trial! You must have stumbled into a typical tourist-trap!
    There are some more good restaurants in Berlin that do not serve this greyish stuff… Try for example “Spätzle & Knödel” in the Wühlischstraße or more expensive “Schneeweiß” in the Simplonstraße (make a reservation)… or the Weltrestaurant Markthalle in Kreuzberg etc etc…
    Just forget about your trial… german dishes are really worth a second trial!

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