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Archive for April, 2009

For those of us who love baseball (like me) a doubleheader is having your cake and eating too, while for baseball non-enthusiasts it basically means twice the boredom for one low-price. 

Not familiar with baseball? Let me explain: A regular sesaon of baseball is comprised of approximately 1,274 games. Add in another 227 in the post sesaon and it’s easy to figure out the necessity for a doulbleheader. In a doubleheader opposing teams play two games on the same day, usually due to a postponed game from earlier in the season, (mostly because of a rain-out) so as to make another trip for the visiting team unnecessary, or the scheduling would be to close because the season is nearing its end. What it means for fans of the sport is easy to see:  double the time to drink beer, eat hot dogs and watch other people doing the same. And if the weather is nice you can also get a good tan.

So here today is our first doulbleheader, and  its from André Sander  and Jill Koglatis of Berlin. (They contribute so often , maybe I should change the blog name to “Dining out with André and Jill”. Not.) Thanks!

 

photo by andré sander for Number 22 and a beer

photo by andré sander for Number 22 and a beer

The Motzstraße surely is the culinary heart of Berlin-Schöneberg. There are dozens of restaurants and almost all cuisines are available. But it’s hard to find a place where the menus are numbered. No kidding. Most of them just write the menu on a board using chalk. And this time we did not want to go to any Asian restaurant (which of course number their menus in every single place). 

So we went to the “Schöneberger Weltlaterne”, which is at the less busy end of the the Motzstr. If you ever wondered what a typical Berlin restaurant looks like, go for the “Schöneberger Weltlaterne”! Good thing first: they serve Weizen-Bier from the tap – and it’s Weihenstephan, which is probably one of the best.

Number 22 was potato soup with a sliced sausage and some light wheat bread. The soup tasted very good, though. There was a butter flavour present, which is surely not the worst. The bread was just some bread, nothing specialhere. I was rather full after having had that bowl of soup, but as usual with soup the hunger came back pretty soon.

The price was a fair 3,90€ but the Weizen was extraordinarily expensive: 3,60€! Jill mentioned this was probably the Schöneberg factor. 

The main courses were all very basic and original German dishes. So, if you are not afraid of lots of calories and lots of meat, this is the place for you to taste German food.

Schöneberger Weltlaterne

Motzstraße 61
10777 Berlin
Telefon: 030/21969861 
Fax: 030/21969986

schoeneberger-weltlaterne.de

—————————————————-

 

photo by andré sander for 22 and a beer

photo by andré sander for 22 and a beer

Once again the #22 thing made choosing much easier. The menu at this place is endless, every kind of meat is combined with every kind of curry. #22 is chicken in a red curry sauce with coconut cream, pineapple and snap beans. What confused me a bit were the grapes that decorated the dish. I ate them anyway, since fruit is good for you. The curry was moderately hot (possibly still counts as a mild dish by Thai standards, but was marked “hot” in the menu. They have “very hot” options as well.).

There was not that much chicken to be found, but since the price was quite low, I was not too disappointed. Apart from that it tasted good, although under non-22-circumstances I’d have chosen something without pineapple. The owner was friendly, I plan to come back, since it is also possible to sit outside in the warmer seasons.

 

 

Chicken with Curry and coconut cream, 5,70 Euro

Beer: Becks, 2,20 Euro

Pailin Thai Küche
Wiener Strasse 11
10999 Berlin  Neukölln

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So there I was, trapped in Bremen Main Station, with only 22 minutes to spare before my train left and an amazing hunger which had me dizzy and confused after a full day of meetings. (Dear Spirit, let the economy recover, hallelujah!)

Now, I am an optimist but also a realist and figured there was only one way to go: choose the dead industrially-raised cattle with the funky flame taste from the BK-Lounge. Quick, and probably germ-free.

But lo and behold a vision for my weary eyes. Directly across from Burger King was a pearl in the rough: Mai-Mai. A quick glance at the illuminated menu and everything was clear. Numbers! And the 22 actually sounded (and looked) good!

The only question on my mind- can they get in done in time?

The answer was reassuring: Only take three minute!  Spicy or sweet and sour? Rice or noodle? When train leave? Hamburg? Oh, lot of time!

But I was skeptical.

4 Minutes later I have my meal. The rice is good, the vegetables are all fresh, cooked crunchy but not raw, and the duck, despite the appearance that brings to mind a certain rare type of avian acne, is still moist and pleasantly crunchy. (The fact that it probably was shipped here that way from China and just thawed, is conveniently pushed aside.) Only weak point: the sauce is not spicy, but a bit salty. A genorous helping of sriracha helps.

photo by number 22 and a beer

photo by number 22 and a beer

Mai-Mai

Bremen Hauptbahnhof (Main Station) East Wing 
across from Burger King

Opening hours from around 8 am till 10 pm

Number 22 Crispy Duck: € 7,00

Becks Beer: € 2,00

 

A lot better than I had expected. I was happily filled with 5 minutes to spare.

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Holger Boerner sent us another Number 22 and a beer from Berlin, thanks Holger. (Sorry it took so long to go up, but the bills have to get paid!)

And keeping with the general stress around here I will be brief. I have only one question: Do people actually enjoy “Berliner Weisse” beer? 

photo by holger boerner for 22 and a beer

photo by holger boerner for 22 and a beer

Vivo 
Wittenbergplatz 1
U-Bahn Wittenbergplatz
across from KaDeWe

Opening hours from around 10 am till 7 pm

Number 22 Pizza Greca: € 7,50

Weisse mit Schuss: € 2,60

Pizzeria Vivo is directly across from from Berlin’s largest Department store KaDeWe (Kaufhaus des Westens) and a fairly open-air location which makes a visit in nicer weather much more bearable than during rainfall (although there are a few pavillions to stand under.) The pizza is a decent average, although the mini pizza mista is better than the pictured Number 22.  All in all Vivo is a decent place for a snack while shopping.

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Baluchistan. A little like India. Only less delicious.

A quick glance in wikipedia will tell you where it is, but having some of the food from there, just might make you want to never go.

Admittedly, generalizing a region’s cuisine based on a sole visit to a restaurant thousands of miles away from the actual place is wrong. For all I know, the local specialties may well be delightful, a mixture of Indian and Persian influenced cooking, with nuanced spices, tender meats and refreshing exotic ingredients.

The version of Baluchi cooking to be found in this Hamburg restaurant used only one spice. And I am not really sure it even is a spice. Salt. And lots of it. The meat was fish, but remarkably dry as a bone. The only exotic ingredient to be found: a few pomegranate seeds strewn over the iceberg lettuce, (but trying to blend in by hiding under a heavy layer of dilled dressing.) Ok, here is my point: It stunk. This clearly might have been the worst of all possible Number 22s to be found. It was only the appetizer, so I ordered a main course to round off the evening as well and give the kitchen a second try. I will say this much: the chefs working here are at the least, erm, consistent.

photo: by number 22 and a beer

photo: by number 22 and a beer


Balutschistan
Grindelalle 91
20146 Hamburg
Tel +4940 41280246

Date eaten March 31, 2009
Price € 4,20

This number 22, “Lahori Machli,” was a fillet of fish, presumably pollock, fried in chick-pea flour and served with a side of two chutneys and a mixed salad. I think Lahori machli translates to “abhorrently mushy,” the deep-fried fish fillet was by no means crispy as the menu proclaimed but soft and fibrous. The concealed fish was dry and bland. The chutneys would have been great on toast, but were just very sweet and a total visit to the chutney shithouse. Terrible. And a mixed salad to go with it is just a lame way of filling up the plate. Guys, you really need to work on this one.

The beer was a refreshing König Ludwig Weissbier which is brewed in Castle Kaltenberg. The brewery is still owned by the descendants of bavarian King Ludwig III.

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