Europe Berlin, Germany
Good Value: Meal Deals in Berlin
Six neighborhood favorites, six mouthwatering menus
BY HANNAH WALLACE | PHOTOGRAPHY BY DEIRDRE ROONEY
The dining-room entrance at Café Jolesch; Weiner schnitzel with cranberry sauce at Jolesch.
Berlin is having a moment—thanks to its vibrant nightlife, a burgeoning art scene and, at last count, 10 Michelin-starred restaurants. Fortunately, despite the haute cuisine boom, the German capital still has a wide array of mid-priced restaurants, even affordable to our falling dollar. Locals divulged these neighborhood favorites, including a modern Vietnamese noodle shop in Mitte and an outdoor biergarten in the city’s famous Tiergarten. Wherever you roam in the city, you’ll never be far from an incredible meal for two at less than 50 euro (about $74 USD).*

1. CAFÉ AM NEUEN SEE
2 Lichtensteinallee, Tiergarten;
011-49-30-254-4930;
dinner for two, $60
In the middle of the Tiergarten, a 630-acre park with a forest and a zoo, this biergarten is a great place for drinks, especially on the terrace which overlooks a pond. Try the roast pork, the lamb cutlets or the thin-crust pizza with shrimp, spinach, garlic and crème fraîche. There’s lighter fare, too: a salad with buffalo mozzarella and pesto, and some simple but tasty pasta dishes. After dinner you can take a rowboat out on the Neuen See.

2. MONSIEUR VUONG
46 Alte Schonhauser Str., Mitte;
011-49-30-9929-6924;
dinner for two, $44
This funky Vietnamese noodle bar in Mitte (the now fashionable historic midtown core) has wooden tables, bright orange walls and large windows that open out onto the street. Daily specials like shrimp spring roll in fried taro and the spicy beef salad are proof there’s a pro in the kitchen. Entrées, such as chicken curry, come in oversized, asymmetrical bowls, and the tea selection is impressive (bamboo tea, anyone?).

3. RESTAURANT SCHNEEWEISS
16 Simplonstr., Friedrichshain;
011-49-30-290-497-04;
dinner for two, $60
A sexy spot in a (former) East Berlin neighborhood, with a minimalist white interior, ambient music and an international clientele. The upmarket Alpine food is outstanding, especially the Kasespätzle (dumplings with aged Gruyère) and the Wiener schnitzel served with warm potato salad. Specials might include mushroom-and-fennel cream soup or a perfectly roasted lamb with rosemary polenta. The waiters are uncharacteristically flexible about substitutions.

4. JOLESCH
1 Muskauer Str., Kreuzberg;
011-49-30-612-3581;
dinner for two, $74
Parquet floors and low lighting make this moody Viennese restaurant ideal for a romantic evening. The cuisine is Austrian with a Mediterranean twist—try the veal with fava beans and artichokes. But the menu also includes such German classics as goulash, Wiener schnitzel and fresh apfelstrudel, while the all-Austrian wine list has a fine selection of Rieslings and Pinot Noirs. For the best deal, check out the set three-course menu.

5. CAFÉ BREL
1 Savignyplatz, Charlottenburg;
011-49-30-3180-0020;
dinner for two, $60
This popular bistro is one of the many restaurants with views of Savignyplatz, a manicured square in the sophisticated Charlottenburg neighborhood. Choose an outdoor table for people-watching and classic French bistro fare: salade Niçoise with fresh tuna; moules frites or steak frites with herb butter. A cabaret singer performs on weekends, summoning the Belgian-born singer-songwriter for whom the restaurant is named.

6. CAFÉ SAVIGNY
53/54 Grolmanstr., Charlottenburg;
cafesavigny.de;
lunch for two, $60
On most mornings, the elegant café is filled with businessmen poring over papers and artists scribbling in sketchbooks. If birchermüsli and bread with jam are too mundane for breakfast, splurge on the Taittinger and caviar. Lunch brings superb salads and pastas, like the pillowy gnocchi with arugula and Parmesan, as well as more filling dishes such as goulash with sour cream, and Wiener würstchen (little sausages) with potato salad.

*Prices are for a meal for two, without drinks, tax or tip.


STAY

RCI-affiliated resorts in Berlin include:

Suite Hotel Berli Potsdamer Platz

Intercontinental Berlin

For more information, visit RCI.com or call

Weeks: 800-338-7777
Points: 877-968-7476

Other Berlin hotels:

Ku’Damm 101
101 Kurfürstendamm; 011-49-30-520-0550;
kudamm101.com; doubles from $175

Lux 11
9–13 Rosa-Luxemburg-Str.; 011-49-30-936-2800;
designhotels.com; doubles from $200

Ritz-Carlton, Berlin
3 Potsdamer Platz; 011-49-30-33-7777;
ritzcarlton.com; doubles from $330

NOTE: The cheapest way to explore Berlin is on the underground U-bahn, the elevated S-bahn (an urban railway) and the public buses. The Welcome Card gives you 48 hours of unlimited travel for about $24 USD; pick one up at any subway kiosk or order it online before you arrive (visitberlin.de).
Published: May/June 2008 Issue 
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