A recent trip to Berlin found me sampling some of the finest food the city has to offer in top restaurant Borchardt. Our party knew very little about the place apart from a city guide which had given it 4 stars so we thought it was worth a shot. It was only when our taxi driver proudly announced that Obama had eaten there, and my subsequent research which revealed it as something of a celebrity hotspot. Who knew!
From the outside, Borchardt does not appear to be anything special – a simple awning stating the name on a nondescript building was not insightful. The inside is also quite minimal, having an atmosphere of a cross between a church and a museum. Marble pillars and tables closely parked together gave it a rather eerie, claustrophobic feel and yet we knew we were experiencing something special. The cuisine is french-german and certainly impressive, despite being limited in choice. I opted for goose on a red cabbage jus as a main dish. It was delightfully rich and the portion – enormous. Other choices included sea-bass and your traditional wiener schnitzel.
All in all, I enjoyed my meal and this is certainly somewhere you should try, but don’t expect anything cosy or intimate. I get the feeling that half the diners are more interested in who is sat at the next table than their food and as such it makes for a rather odd atmosphere. Also, bizarrely there were hoards of people smoking by the toilets. It isn’t cheap, but these places never are so I guess it helps if you have a celebrity to ogle / pay for you! Prost!
(Restaurant Borchardt, Französische Straße 47 10117 Berlin, Germany)