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Number 22 #12

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.

Number 22 #11

Our 11th Number 22 and a beer is again from André Sander and Jill Koglatis of Berlin. Thanks! Not only is the restaurant something new for us, this contribution is proof that simply by adhering to the Number 22 and a beer strategy of ordering, you can still get a table at a full restaurant, even without knowing the maitre d’! But read on dear visitor:

This time André and Jill have found a truly exotic restaurant and take us on a culinary excursion to Ethiopia.

And what an optical event it is!

I have never been to Ethiopa, and only once ate an ethiopian meal, in that well-known capital of Ethiopian ex-pats, Minneapolis, Minnesota. And it was truly memorable.

It left me filled for days, which I ascribe to the traditional ethiopian bread, known as injera. Made from flour of an ethiopan grass called teff, which is mixed with water and left to ferment for several days. But I guess the baking of the bread doesn’t stop the fermantation process completely, and about two hours after the meal, the belly puffs up and a slight, let me call it, “discomfort” sets in. But the stuff on the teff bread was purely magical and extremely spicy.

photo: andré sander for number 22 and a beer

photo: andré sander for number 22 and a beer

Bejte-Ethiopia
Zietenstrasse 8
10783 Berlin
TEL: 004930 / 2625933

http://www.bejte-ethiopia.de/

Our advice: call for reservations!

Price of meal: 17 Euros, Beer 3 Euros, Maxi-Malz (Malt beer) 2,10 Euros

Number 22: Vegetarian selection for two

The place was quite packed, we nearly did not get a table. But knowing in advance what we would eat, really reduces the time spent staring into menus, so we could assure the owner that we would be out in an hour.

The food looked as if it had expected the photo shoot. Different delicious lentil stuff, some of it spicy, some of it with horseradish, something containing potatoes, dollops of kale, tomato salad. Served with ethiopian sourdough bread, and to be eaten without cutlery, so wash your hands! It all tasted very good, and it was very filling.

The photo does not do the interior design justice, it is really really, erm, colourful and the place smells of incense. If you cannot stand the smell of incense, wait for warmer temperatures and sit outside, where as an added bonus you can see people sneaking into the swinger club on the other side of the road.

Number 22 #10

I just poured myself a glass of wine and am doing a little shimmy, because here at Number 22 and a beer it’s time to celebrate our 10th Number 22 and a beer!

But there is no time to rest on our laurels. The past 36 days have brought a lot of visitors to the site. Many more than I would have guessed, given the slim premise of the site and amateurish administration of your’s truly. (It’s actually around 7,000 visitors! Wow, that surprised me a bit.)

But it could be so much more! Together we can get this movement to go global, starting a world-wide revolution, a quest for the elusive magical Number 22 which may bring world peace and prosperity to all. YES WE CAN! Oh sorry it’s just all so exciting!

Regrettably our 10th Number 22 isn’t. Exciting, I mean.

That is by no means criticism of the contributor Heimo Tscherne who has two blogs worth visiting (if you speak german, all the better) schwarzthoughts.wordpress.com/ and bretterderwelt, which is brand-spanking new and, dare I say, no less bizarre than my little project here. But heck, champiñones con patates isn’t what I would consider rocking gastronomy. But here at Number 22 and a beer we play the ball where it lies. So without further adue, a less than spectacular plate of stuff the cat brought in. (Heimo, I commend you.) Oh and be sure to follow the link to Olé Madrid’s website. Web 0.3 in the house!

One more thing: Spread the word folks, please! Have you got good business contacts abroad? Then let them know about this site. Travelling to distant lands? Drop me a line, like everybody, I love a souvenir with a bit of heart put into it. And keep reading and commenting!

photo: heimo tscherne for Number 22 and a beer

photo: heimo tscherne for Number 22 and a beer

OLÉ MADRID
Häberlstraße 15
80337 München
http://www.ole-madrid.com/

Price : 2,50 Euro, 3,00 Euro the beer.

This number 22 comes from the Spanish restaurant Olé Madrid in Munich.

The restaurant is next to Goetheplatz, I had never been there before this visit. The room is big and tries to create a certain southern flair. The service is fast and the list of tapas is long. Number 22 here is regrettably only champiñones con patatas a tapas of mushrooms and potatoes. Keeping with the idea of taking a number 22 without thinking about the consequences, I nevertheless ordered it. The cook apparently was NOT having his best day. I have never heard about this restaurant again.

To make your life easier, and the path to Number 22 and a beer faster and stress-free, we’ve ditched the wordpress in the URL. Yes we shelled out the big bucks for you.

The new domain name is now: 22andabeer.com

But not to worry: all links linking the old address will be redirected.

Number 22 #9

Kudos to our first mutliple contributor, Holger Börner! ¡Ay, Caramba!

Not only is Holger apparently a true believer in the “Number 22 and a beer” idea he really, really must like to eat.

I am a lover of true mexican food, and yes I do also mean pickled pigs ears and nopales, a delightfully spicy-sour condiment made of marinated cactus. Fortunate enough to have lived in the USA for many years, I have been able to sample many fine mexican meals, including a wonderful home cooked Pollo en Mole from the salad lady at the Park Hyatt Hotel in Chicago. (Over fifteen years ago, but not forgotten!) Regrettably (at least as far as mexican food is concerned) I moved to Germany. And there is only one place where mexican food tasted worse than in Germany: a chain I would consider hell in form of a restaurant, Chi-Chi’s. Which incidentally had to close all of its restaurants in 1994, after an outbreak of hepatitis in a restaurant in Pennsylvania (Oy, the irony!) With all respect to Holger, I do urge any and all readers to take caution when choosing mexican food in Germany. Although hepatitis is probably unlikely, bad food is probable.
It’s sad. But true.

Here then is Holger’s report. (In the background when can discern Holger’s companion’s meal (number 23): a steak with a side order of bleeding fingers, it seems.)

photo: Holger Börner for Number 22 and a beer

photo: Holger Börner for Number 22 and a beer

Paydos
Wittenbergplatz 3
10787 Berlin/Germany
U-Bahn Wittenbergplatz
http://www.paydos-berlin.de

Opening hours:
su-th 9:00-24:00
fr-sa 9:00-2:00

Date eaten: March 18 2009

Price: € 11,50, Beer € 3,50

¡hola ricura! el número 22 y una cerveza, por favor

Pollo a la piña
Strips of chicken breast together with pineapple, vegetables, rice and salad

A large portion with lots of salad, it was a filling meal- for me at least. This dish is listed under “specialties” and tastes very good.

Paydos belongs to a series of three restaurants next to each other on the north side of the Wittenbergplatz, with a view of KaDeWe, (Berlin’s big department store). The interior is very nice, and one might be tempted to think of oneself in Mexico.
The service was friendly and pretty, at least at lunch when I visited. Because of the central location in Berlin’s West Center I presume reservations are recommended in the evening, when the place could be rather full.

Number 22 #8

I am glad to say that I am back and all bones are where they should be, and in as many segments as our maker intended.

The snow, sun and skiing were great, but sadly no 22s were to be found in the Austrian Alps. While I was away a few more did come in from faithful readers. This entry is from Jill Koglatis (text) and André Sander (photo) from Berlin. Thanks for your contribution!

Above all I would like to commend André and Jill for their bravery. Actually eating in a restaurant that uses dishes such as those pictured below, is a feat I would compare to willing yourself to jump off a bridge attached by nothing more than a rubber band. For some reason I can’t help thinking the restaurant owners must have picked up the china at the going-out-of-business-sale of this fine establishment.

photo:  André Sander for Number 22 and a beer

photo: André Sander for Number 22 and a beer

Mr. Long
Kollwitzstraße 89
10435 Berlin
http://www.mrlongandfriends-berlin.de/

(The actual menu and the one available online differ.)

Noodle soup with chicken, 5,50 €
(Beer: Saigon, 2,70 €)

We were a bit disappointed that number 22 was a soup, but since we skipped ordering number 22 at another place a few days ago because it was soup, this time we did not chicken out.
The soup looked very healthy, was a bit spicy and not the ideal dish for people who hate cilantro and the like.
The staff was friendly (in Berlin this always has to be mentioned).

Vacation Time

img_0043
Is there a 22 in here?

We will be taking a few days off. See you soon I hope. And hopefully I will have a new 22 or more in my suitcase when I return.