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Trout done two ways at Kin Dee restaurant in Berlin
Photograph: Robert Rieger

The 25 best restaurants in Berlin

Looking for a life-changing meal? You might well find it in our pick of the best restaurants in Berlin right now

By Anna Geary-Meyer
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Only a few years ago, a culinary elite from the more moneyed cities of Düsseldorf and Frankfurt might have insisted there was no truly outstanding food in Berlin. Sure, it’d be all too easy to stumble through a weekend in Berlin fuelled on nothing but doner kebab and Club-Mate, but the Hauptstadt boasts all manner of life-changing meals you shouldn’t miss out out on. The art, as always, is knowing where to look.

For a cheap and cheerful midday plate of hummus and fresh veg, head to Neukölln’s Sonnenallee, or to the one of several venerable Israeli joints in Prenzlauer Berg. Meat-eaters should try Kreuzberg’s köfteci and ocakbasi for stomach-warming grilled lamb, lentil soup and fresh bread served late into the night. Alternatively, you could shell out to see what this year’s Michelin hype is all about – the buzz is well earned, by the way – or snuggle up at one of an array of newly opened bistro-cum-wine bars cropping up around Berlin’s coolest neighbourhoods. How’s that, culinary elite?

Eaten somewhere on this list and loved it? Share it with the hashtag #TimeOutEatList. You can find out more about how Time Out makes recommendations and reviews restaurants here.

Best restaurants in Berlin

A whole fish at Kin Dee restaurant in Berlin
Photograph: Robert Rieger

1. Kin Dee

Part of the Grill Royal gourmet empire, Kin Dee has proven a worthy successor to Thai-Berliner institution Edd’s. Head chef and owner Dalad Kambhu strays into similar fusion territory, serving creative fine Thai cuisine with a focus on fresh, high-quality ingredients. With its set menu of small plates, excellent vegetarian options and a well-chosen wine list, Kin Dee has already won over the locals – and was awarded its first Michelin star in 2019. This makes Kambhu the youngest woman ever to receive the honour in Germany. How better to celebrate than with a meal you won’t be forgetting any time soon?

Price: Pricey

Grill Royal
Photograph: Stefan Korte

2. Grill Royal

Restaurants Global Mitte

One of the city’s best-known venues, the riverside Grill Royal is a stylish, friendly and exceptionally meaty experience. Not for vegetarians or anyone on a diet or budget, Grill is as brilliant for people-watching as it is for its (stoutly priced) steaks and seafood. The meat is sourced from local suppliers as well as from Argentina, Ireland and Australia. The walls are adorned with rather striking soft-porn art from the owner’s collection. Reservations are essential.

Price: Blowout

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Tim Raue restaurant
Photograph: Wolfgang Stahr

3. Tim Raue

Restaurants Fusion

Unlike many of Berlin’s fine-dining establishments, this small restaurant prides itself on its informality – despite its place at number 37 on the world’s best restaurants list. The tasting menu might include amuse-bouches of spicy cashews, prawn sashimi and marinated pork belly, moving on to main courses of wagyu beef, lobster, Australian winter truffle and tofu. Everything has a Japanese touch and comes served with blobs, smears or foams of contrasting flavours and colours. Book ahead.

Price: Blowout

Coda
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Nina W.

4. Coda

Offering a menu composed entirely of desserts and drinks, concept restaurant Coda earned its first (long-awaited) Michelin star in 2019. Masterminded by chef René Frank, its plates are artfully composed, use only the freshest ingredients and place an emphasis on the experimental. Come by for the blowout six-course tasting menu which pairs desserts with drinks (from €98). Alternatively, head to the bar for a superlative cocktail.

Price: Pricey

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Outdoor seating at Malakeh restaurant in Berlin
Photograph: Malakeh

5. Malakeh

Recent opening Malakeh’s Syrian cuisine is as mouth-watering as its origin story is heartwarming. Owner Malakeh Jazmati has no formal kitchen training, but once found a following as Syrian TV personality Maliket al-Tabkh (‘the Queen of Cooking’). Driven out of her country by the war, she came to Berlin in 2015 and has set up this restaurant with her husband Mohammed. As a poignant reminder of the home she left behind, Malakeh is decked out with pictures of Syrian artists and activists. Food-wise, expect excellent kibbeh in a yoghurt sauce, moreish fried aubergine and some of the city’s freshest tomatoes.

Price: Average

6. Nobelhart & Schmutzig

This restaurant’s tagline is ‘vocally local’ – meaning they refuse to import food from beyond the capital and its immediate surroundings. Sadly, that also means no chocolate. However, chef and sommelier Billy Wagner will win you over to the cause: he uses neglected traditional methods to create a seasonally shifting menu packed with bold, contemporary flavours. The frontage is nondescript, visible only to those in the know, and you have to ring a bell before being ushered around a long wooden table with just 28 seats. Booking is, unsurprisingly, essential.

Price: Pricey

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Eins44
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Michael A.

7. Eins44

Fancy a side of history with your main? Eins44 serves exquisite fine dining in the industrial surroundings of a former schnapps factory. Proving there’s a place for high-end eating in down-and-dirty Neukölln, the restaurant serves both lunch and dinner. Lunches tend towards the classics, while in the evening you can pick three (€46) or up to six courses (€73) from flexible menus featuring seasonal dishes such as venison with shiitake mushrooms and prawns with vermouth and yellow beetroot. 

Price: Pricey

Kumpel & Keule Speisewirtschaft
Photograph: Kumpel & Keule / Hendrik Haase

8. Kumpel & Keule Speisewirtschaft

Kumpel & Keule serves something startlingly rare in the German capital: high-quality, regionally sourced German cuisine with genuinely friendly service. It’s worth skipping lunch and going all-out at their Kreuzberg restaurant, whose menu offers modern takes on German and international butchery. Why not try the dry-aged steak menu or the handmade pork sausage? Alternatively, explore the menu’s more surprising side – we’re talking things like rabbit’s kidney with parsnip puree. Finish, if you’re up to it, with a round of homemade schnapps.

Price: Pricey

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9. Shaam

The shawarma at Shaam, a popular Syrian spot on Karl-Marx-Straße, may well be the best in Berlin, and the toum is so garlicky that both parties on a date should be required, by law, to dig in. That’s not a criticism; the sauce adds the perfect zing to the shawarma’s heavenly blend of crispy (the bread) and fatty (the meat). There are plenty of lighter, herbivore-friendly options, too, and everything comes with crunchy fresh veg to dip. Order a few plates to share.

Price: Bargain

Palsta Wine Bar
Photograph: Palsta Wine Bar

10. Palsta Wine Bar

Until recently, Scandinavian food had been oddly underrepresented in Berlin. Perched on what they’ve coined ‘the riviera of Neukölln’, Palsta’s prime location allows guests to look out over Tempelhofer Feld while enjoying any number of Nordic bistro treats and quality wines. The seafood starters, such as the shrimp tartare or grilled asparagus with salmon roe vinaigrette, are the high point of an already strong menu.

Price: Pricey

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Horváth
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Horváth

11. Horváth

Operating outside the usual Berlin luxury hotel system, Austrian chef Sebastian Frank gained a Michelin star in 2011 at this canal-side restaurant. Enjoy a tasting menu of typical German ingredients transformed through novel techniques and flavour combinations: the onion, pigeon and kohlrabi, and the sturgeon, rib and celery, are charred, elegant and perfectly plated. The Austrian wine list is also excellent. Booking advised.

Price: Blowout

12. Barra Berlin

Along with nearby Palsta, Neukölln’s Barra is part of a wave of fancy-ish wine bars that have opened up in Berlin of late – swanky enough to feel celebratory, but not prohibitively expensive. The quality of the small plates here – flavour highlights include sea bream, pumpkin, chicory and bergamot – match that of the low-intervention wines, largely from France and Germany. The chestnut soup with shiitake mushrooms is a hit, as is the chocolate mousse.

Price: Average

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Azzam restaurant in Berlin
Photograph: Tommy Tannock

13. Azzam

Restaurants Lebanese Beyond the centre

People flock from all over the city to sample Azzam’s hummus, made fresh throughout the day. The grilled minced lamb is perfectly seasoned, and the falafel is a crunchy, sesame-speckled delight. You get a lot for your money, too: each dish comes with raw veg, bitter olives, garlicky mayo or tahini sauce, and a basket of stacked pita bread which doubles as cutlery.

Price: Bargain

893 Ryotei
Photograph: 893 Ryotei

14. 893 Ryotei

This is one of the most talked-about openings in Berlin in recent years and, thankfully, it’s not all talk. Duc Ngo, also behind the city’s popular Cocolo Ramen, clearly knows what he’s doing: 893’s hybrid Japanese-Peruvian cuisine results in dishes that, while certainly boundary-pushing, are also just, well, tasty. Highlights include the veal heart skewers, the grilled octopus and the sashimi moriawase plate. Obviously, a bottle of saké  for the table (around €35) is a must.

Price: Pricey

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Das Lokal restaurant
Photograph: Tommy Tannock

15. Das Lokal

Restaurants German Mitte

Das Lokal comes from fine heritage: formerly Kantine, a cult pop-up of sorts which had occupied a space earmarked for demolition in David Chipperfield’s architectural office. The seasonal menu changes weekly and might feature starters of pigeon with chestnuts, mussels in broth or asparagus croquette – all have bold, local flavours in abundance. We recommend anything with offal or game in it. 

Price: Pricey

16. Risa

Yes, OK, there are a number of worthwhile Grillhähnchen (rotisserie chicken) joints scattered throughout Berlin. But there’s something weirdly electrifying about a trip to Risa, which has recently expanded from its original location in Neukölln to an array of new outlets throughout the city, including one shop in Prenzlauer Berg and another on Charlottenburg’s ritzy Ku’damm. Maybe it’s the fluorescent lighting, or perhaps the decadent range of ways to consume their killer fried chicken (tenders! burgers! wings!). Whatever it is, don’t forget to order a side of moreish sour pickles.

Price: Bargain

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Inside Standard Serious Pizza in Berlin
Photograph: Standard Serious Pizza

17. Standard Serious Pizza

Another year, another Neapolitan-style pizza restaurant opening in Berlin. We’re not complaining, though. Berlin’s pizza renaissance has upped the quality of the pies by huge margins, and Standard in Prenzlauer Berg is a crowd-pleasing favourite. You can’t go wrong with the margherita, with its fior di latte mozzarella and San Marzano tomatoes (€8.50), or the more out-there house white pizza featuring smoked cheese, semi-dried tomatoes, aubergine and olive pesto (€14.50).

Price: Average

Khao Taan
Photograph: Khao Taan

18. Khao Taan

Sure, there’s nothing wrong with a quick Thai curry from your cheap and cheerful go-to just around the corner, but it’s worth a ride on the S-Bahn for something a little more special. Everything at Khao Taan, a new venture opened by former lawyer Gaan, feels earnest and fresh, with an emphasis on family-style eating. For €35 a head, everyone at the table shares from a fixed set of dishes, meant to guide guests through the flavours, textures and (communal) dining norms of Thai culture. The fish curry is particularly good. Cash only.

Price: Average

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Mrs Robinson’s
Photograph: Cate Gowers

19. Mrs Robinson’s

In a fabulous tale of modern romance, Samina Raza and Ben Zviel met in Berghain, fell in love, and went on to open Mrs Robinson’s, one of the city’s most daring and creative kitchens. Working with a broad palate of flavours from Israel, where chef Ben comes from, as well as from Asia and the greater Brandenburg region, this relatively new restaurant in northern Prenzlauer Berg is bound to make a splash on the Berlin food scene. The cocktails are gorgeous, too.

Price: Average

Burgermeister
Photograph: Burgermeister

20. Burgermeister

There are plenty of great burgers to be found in Berlin, but none are quite as iconic as Burgermeister’s. This joint first opened in a former public toilet outside the Schlesisches Tor U-Bahn station, and, as a testament to its success, has now expanded to three new locations. The menu is refreshingly simple, the cheesy fries as comforting as comfort food gets, and the mouth-watering vegan burger nothing like your token veggie option.

Price: Bargain

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Lon Men’s Noodle House
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Berthold R.

21. Lon Men’s Noodle House

If Berlin had a Chinatown, it would be Charlottenburg’s Kantstrasse. This tiny hole-in-the-wall spot knocks out Taiwanese classics such as noodle soups and gua bao (rice buns filled with duck) as well as more esoteric plates of dressed beef tongue or pigs’ ears sliced finely over rice noodles. It’s almost always full in the evening, but the turnover is fast enough that you’ll find a seat pretty quickly.

Price: Bargain

Rogacki, Shopping, Berlin
Photograph: Tommy Tannock

22. Rogacki

Shopping

A trip to Rogacki, a German-Polish deli-cum-food market, is like stepping back in time. The draw here is the fish: specialities include bratherings (brined and fried herring) and rollmops (pickled herrings rolled around gherkin). Alongside the excellent, high-quality produce, you’ll find gourmet ‘islands’ at which you can pull up a stool and order fischbrötchen or oysters and wine for much less than at KaDaWe. It’s excellent for people-watching, too.

Price: Bargain

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The terrace at Café Einstein Stammhaus
Photograph: Café Einstein Stammhaus

23. Cafe Einstein Stammhaus

For a taste of old-world decadence that never goes out of style, visit this Nollendorfplatz institution. It’s set in a neo- Renaissance villa built in the 1870s by a wealthy industrialist; red leather banquettes, parquet flooring and the crack of wooden chairs all contribute to the historic Viennese café experience. You could come for a bracing breakfast of herb omelette with feta cheese and spinach, or, in the afternoon, a classic apple strudel and a Wiener Melange (a creamy Austrian coffee), all served with a flourish by the charming uniformed waiters.

Price: Average

Fine Bagels
Photograph: Shendl Kopitman

24. Fine Bagels

Germany isn’t exactly known for its bagels, but this Friedrichshain bagel shop-cum-café-cum-bookstore does a fantastic job bringing NY-style bagels and Jewish-American bakery sweets to Berlin. It’s hard to go wrong with anything on the menu here, and the espresso by Bonanza Coffee is the perfect complement. Settle in for an hour or two if the weather’s bad, or pick up some forgotten holiday reading material at the Shakespeare and Sons bookstore.

Price: Bargain

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Konnopke’s
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Borris H.

25. Konnopke’s

Restaurants European Prenzlauer Berg

Refurbished a few years ago, this venerable sausage stand has been under the same family management since 1930. After coming up with a secret recipe for ketchup (which wasn’t available after the Wall was built), it was the first place to offer currywurst in East Berlin and still serves the most famous – and quite possibly the best – version in the city. Expect queues. 

Price: Bargain

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Photograph: Shutterstock

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